November 2010 – March 2011
As Ark° was growing we set our sights on London. When it came to the big launch, there was only ever one agency I wanted to work with. Frank PR are one of the top players in the game, having won Marketing Week’s agency of the year three times, most recently in 2010.
It quickly became apparent that we couldn’t afford their fees but in recognition of my talents and work to date, I was offered a job personally by Graham Goodkind, Chairman of Frank.
This was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. Frank works with the biggest UK brands and their creative campaigns are renowned internationally. While I have a huge amount of love for Ark°, I felt I had taken it to a great place and was happy leaving the reins to Cameron who had plans to bring the movement to America.
The next six months were an exposure to the very best in corporate consultancy. I was brought in as one of the lead creatives in the development of national PR campaigns for household brands. This involved participating in design processes to unearth creative ideas for our clients, and respond to briefs for new business development. Frank is a hot bed of ideas and I immediately felt at home.
I also worked directly on CSR for the energy giant Npower and coordinated global PR for Grolsch in Russian and South African markets. The latter allowed for significant immersion in brand positioning, culminating in a research trip to Moscow to understand how local consumers responded to the re positioning of the brand.
My speciality at Frank (informed by my previous work at Ark°) was in the not for profit and charity sector. This involved the classic nuts and bolts of PR: Implementing campaigns, building relations with the media, writing press releases, and selling in campaigns. One of my most significant contributions during my time at Frank was for Global Cool, a green charity that promote sustainable lifestyles. As part of their thought leadership drive I aided in the drafting and editing of ‘Sustainability: Moving from the Nerd’s choice to the Herd’s choice’, a white paper on how brands can utilise behavioural economics to nudge consumers toward more sustainable consumption. I was also project lead on the follow up sustainability roundtable that brought together industry heads, including the Customer Sustainability Director for Coca Cola Europe and the Global External Affairs Director at Unilever, to map out the case for sustainability and what business needs to do to move from green to growth.
My contract ended in March, having given me the opportunity to gain rapid immersion in a whole new industry setting. I now move forward with fundamentals of PR, and enhanced understanding of the creative process, and best practise in high profile client relations.
One of my primarily roles in Ark° was to build a loyal movement around the brand. While big spend marketing campaigns can bring a percentage increase in sales, only a genuine two way relationship can foster sustainable growth. I saw Facebook as the home of our movement and through a year of consistently engaging, original, and creative posts, we reached 10,000 fans. No advertising, no competitions, just engaging content. What it really amounted to was the creation of a social business, a new breed of brand that recognises the paradigm shift that is social media, using its channels to tear down the wall between consumer and producer, bringing believers on a journey of co creation.
Here is a sample of my work, highlighting imaginative concepts, engaging copy, and beautiful story telling. All perfectly suited to our audience of university students.
We created viral Ark° suggestion coupons that people could print out and put on notice boards around the world.
We brought thirty of our most loyal fans on a ‘Great Ark° Underwear Run‘ around London.
We revealed our top five business failures, an intimate look at our shortcomings and the vulnerability of every brand.
We crafted a compelling brand story around the founder Cameron, revealing intimate points along the journey, such as his very first t-shirts, made in his economics class as a teenager.
We allowed our community to vote on all major decisions we made, from the colours of our t shirts to the designs we would commision
We ran two way design thinking processes with them to help shape and define our brand.
The creation of truly engaging home for our online movement was my proudest achievement in my time at Ark°. I believe this what it means to use communications to make a brand resonate with the people who matter most.