Why we steal from our clients.
In the marketing world, agencies are supposed to be the ‘creative’ ones and clients are supposed to be the dullards who are grateful for a fresh source of ideas. In our experience, that’s just not how it works.
Yes, we’re in the ideas business and we like to think our creativity is second to none. But we’ve worked with some really creative, intelligent, articulate clients who are curious about the world and about communications and who know their markets inside out. These people are fountains of ideas and we’d be idiots not to splash around in their brilliance.
Over the years, we’ve stolen lots of things from our clients and put them to work for Velocity itself or for other clients (ones who don’t compete with the originator). In fact, it’s one of the joys of being in this business.
Admittedly, our first reaction can sometimes be, “Shit, we didn’t think of that, we need a reason to not like it.” But if the idea is good, it quickly out-weighs the Not Invented Here impulse.
Literally every time we pick up the phone to Paul Nerger of dotMobi, we know we’re going to hear some new ideas for products, services, pricing, marketing, business models, experiments or novel demonstrations. And he doesn’t just think up the ideas, he writes the code, develops the algorithm, launches the site and recruits the first adopters.
John Watton of ShipServ is a magpie like us. He flies around the world and the web, picking up shiny things and figuring out ways to use them to market his e-commerce platform. You don’t see viral videos starring Raymond Massey on the typical maritime industry website but you do on ShipServ.com (we had fun with that one).
Jens Hørup of Amplex is a fantastic communicator with a real interest in presenting ideas. He turned us on to the power of Keynote as an alternative to Powerpoint and, more recently, to Prezi, the coolest presentation tool we’ve seen in a while (watch this space).
The line between creatives and non-creatives doesn’t exist. We’re all enthusiasts about something. So we’re not only happy to steal shamelessly from our clients, we wouldn’t want to be part of an agency that frowned on it.