There is never a dull moment in PR. But a routine is set quite quickly. So what do you do when you want to get that after-holiday vibe of fresh energy and ideas, but already spend enough time on a sunny beach? You organise an exchange with a different agency! Easy said, easy done. I joined the Manifest London team during a (mostly) sunny week in September. These are the findings of both me and Manifesto’s in London – because an exchange goes both ways.
How we’re already on the same page
First thing. It’s crazy how much we have in common! Like what we do to become a great agency to work for:
We both have a non-hierarchical structure that makes sure we focus on what people are good at and what we like to do. That sounds ‘soft’, but actually, it’s about making decisions that more than one person supports and creating a forward-going vibe. For example, if you are a pitch-queen, you probably are not the one to sit behind your desk all day gaining insights. Then why should you, if there are also people around who love the insights part, and not the pitching part? Become a specialist, not a generalist.
Agencies are built upon people, not on job titles. That’s why we both don’t focus on them. Oh, and we both have unlimited holidays. Yes, correct. That means we can take a much days off as we feel that we need. It’s a matter of trust.
We both offer a lot more than traditional media relations and in that sense, are focussing on a broadening demand of the client. We both have a content studio, knowledge about rented/social media, influencers etcetera.
We don’t say yes to everyone who wants to work with us, unless you pass our client checklist. Including questions about ‘are the people at agency and client side a match’? And ‘do we like the product or service’? Arrogant? We say it’s smart. Starting with something that turns out to be a fiasco later on, will actually cost you in terms of motivation, energy and probably money as well.
What we’ve learned from each other
Well, a lot. Besides the small things that we at Coopr could integrate, like placing our clients every week in categories of ‘green’, ‘amber’ or ‘red’ based on the amount of time they require or how happy they are currently, the focus on branding is absolutely interesting. Writing a branding book for a new client will make sure that you live and breathe the brand. Off course, it should be a request from a client. But it can also be the start of a new project.
And the magic words ‘I’ll buy you the biggest coffee you have ever seen’ should do the trick in getting the whole company to join a PR stunt at 06.30 in the morning. I will definitely try that at home.
So thank you all so much for your time to guide me tru your company, your creative way of thinking and for sharing all the fun! I’ve had more than enough tea (with milk and with sugar) than I could dream of having. Let’s break more rules together!