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EcommNews recently spoke with Paul Beard, the marketing manager for Attain Design.
According to his Linkedin profile Paul is a “Marketing professional…looking to make new connections and help who I can”
A great attitude to have for marketing and building relationships in business, an attitude that shows through when speaking with him…
Can you provide a brief overview of your company, Attain Design?
Attain Design are a Creative & Digital Marcoms Agency. In other words, we generate outreach, promote buy-in, ensure retention and overcome obstacles for brand-owners through the strategic application of design and technology. I like to think of what we do as the business of creativity.
Although we’re a small team, with just 6 in the office from day to day, we have a cherry-picked network of industry experts to call upon for every conceivable channel or technology: Ideally, we try to build bespoke teams for each client and project. So with that in mind, our thinking is very much that of an integrated full-service agency.
I’m the Marketing Manager. Sounds funny doesn’t it: Marketing Manager at a Marketing Agency…
But, alas, I am not in charge of all the marketing done here at Attain. In fact, while all 6 of us bring different skills to the table, we all share a strong background in marketing and communications so we’re fortunate in that we can all chip in together to crack those tricky briefs.
No, my role is a bit of a hybrid, really. On the one hand, I drive the overall marketing communications strategy for the agency, building brand awareness and seeking opportunities to develop key areas of the business. On the other hand I do the same for our clients in the capacity of a marketing consultant. So you could say that I bridge the gap between client and agency to lay foundations and ensure the smooth delivery of projects.
How do you like to start your working day?
I tend to kick-off my day with a quick nosy through the news; local, national, global, industry etc. It’s not really ‘new business’ research per se, but it does help me to clear my head and focus for the rest of the day. I find that the little insights I discover get my brain in gear and keep me up-to-date with general industry trends and moves.
What are the main events that occur during your working day?
It’s hard to say exactly what I do from day-to-day though. At any given moment I could be copy writing, blogging, tweeting, creating email campaigns, providing consultancy to clients, writing proposals, managing client campaigns, picking up the phone and building relationships directly; Anything that promotes a two-way dialogue with our audience, really.
What do you think about meetings? Interruptions or necessary communication?
One thing I can say for sure is that I love the consultancy meetings. I fell head-over-heels for agency-side marketing over a decade ago precisely for that reason.
What could be more exciting than meeting organizations to learn more about their obstacles with a view to lifting burdens and generating progress for them? I think progress is the ultimate goal in any business activity, and to be there when it all starts makes seeing the results so much more satisfying.
Do you you prefer to work in a shared office or in your own space?
I guess I’m lucky in that our internal meetings hold similar appeal for me too: I get to treat Attain Design like a client and put forward ideas for growth in the just the same way. In fact, working in a shared office is a fantastic driver of creativity for us. We all have a lot of faith in each other so we take each and every idea as it comes. Since the best ideas often come uninvited, it makes sense to pitch them when they occur so we can put them to the ultimate test – each other!
Our new web site is a good example. We have all added our own expertise to create something that impresses from all angles (design, development, tactical delivery etc) and shows understanding at all levels. However, the brand and tone are uniform throughout. The key thing here is that we managed to do it without endless rounds of meetings and amends because we could all work on the project in close quarters and communicate our ideas to each other so freely.
How important do you think communication is within business? Both internal company communication and the sharing of industry news with peers?
We’re a very open bunch like that: Relaxed because we can be unguarded while still knowing we can speak our minds very honestly. The most effective and efficient Marcoms solutions are borne out of creativity, and the only way to achieve the ideal of creativity is to think harder, even when you think you’ve cracked it. After all, you never know if there’s a better idea out there until you think of it… That’s the irony I suppose. And the challenge!
The theme of open and honest communication, working toward a common goal through the sharing of information, is one that I often contemplate. I always endeavor to forge relationships with external organizations to grow our trusted affiliate network and also to share insights. Most people seem very interested in the former but sadly not the latter.
Personally, I feel that gaining knowledge is the best kind of progress achievable and is an investment in yourself as well as your business. Sometimes I wish I could shake people into realizing that it’s not always about the immediate sales and resellers! It’s about relationships too.
Finally, how do you feel about your job in general?
But how can I complain? I have great clients, expert colleagues, stimulating projects, inspiring affiliates and exciting opportunities. I’m always learning about some new development code or swatting up on the latest social media trends, following up-and-coming brands or staying ahead of the curve on market analysis – This job doesn’t let me stand still and that’s why I will never grow tired of it.
Paul is clearly a person who loves his job, something that always brings the best out of someone when working on a project. If you want to know more about his work and the rest of the team check out www.attaindesign.co.uk