Thursday, February 4, 2010

New Year, New Journey

In Mid-December, I joined a new team—which you could probably figure out by the lack of activity on the blog.  Even though I have enjoyed, and learned an incredible amount about sales and marketing during my twelve 12 years with MarketBridge, I came across an opportunity that was too good to miss.  

For years, the Big 4 (WPP, IPG, Omnicom and Publicis Groupe) had rolled up agencies to create vast global networks with a broad spectrum of services to meet the needs of their global client base.  The strategy of following the money and clients had served them well, and it grew the business substantially over the years.  

However, it left a gap in the market. The “big” focused on big and primarily consumer ad budgets, leaving the complex needs of business-to-business companies unmet. For business-to-business companies, having a big ad budget isn’t necessarily as important and/or effective as targeted, highly customized one-to-one communication,…but it does matter to big agencies. 

A few smart folks, including Rick Segal, CEO of the former HSR Business to Business headquartered in Cincinnati, and Richard Glasson, CEO of Gyro International, out of London, recognized this opportunity and the need for a new agency model. 

The group has been busily assembling a collection of best-in-class B-to-2B agencies with services ranging from traditional direct marketing to leading-edge digital shops.   The agency, now called GyroHSR, combines the names of two leading, awarding-winning agencies. 

Customer feedback on the new agency model pointed to the need to add greater expertise and experience in understanding channels.  With the noise and confusion surrounding Web 2.0, and the necessity to increase precision with marketing investments, adding a new team member was essential.        

That’s where I come in. My role on the team is to add a bit of some little left-brain thinking to the right- brain creativity, blending the best of the art and science worlds.   

I’m starting a new practice that will focus on helping clients better understand how customers buy and what channels they prefer to use during that process.  The Channel Marketing practice is going to be based in a new Washington, D.C. office, opening this month.

Over the next few months, I’ll be tweeting and posting about my assimilation into the new world of art.   My “online diary” should provide an interesting view into the agency world through the lens of a left-brain consultant.  I can tell you this already: We definitely do see the world differently, not better or worse. Just differently. Stayed tuned. It should be an interesting journey.