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  • Crowdsourcing Clients – Where Agency Nil Went Next

    11th August 09

    Posted by Mel Exon

    Posted in transformational change

    At the end of May this year we got pretty excited and the debate got fairly heated about the launch of Agency Nil – the agency with the convention-busting business model that ‘will work for all it’s worth’. In other words, they’ll do the work and you pay them what you think you should.  Unorthodox, audacious stuff whichever way you look at it, we were impressed.

    Since launch they’ve been approached by both clients and talent and, inevitably, as they started work on live projects (including clients with food products and online services, not to mention a pitch for a large software company’s NPD launch), one of the toughest questions facing any agency arose: when were they going to find time to do the work brilliantly AND keep scouting for new business? Clearly a conventional solution wasn’t going to cut it at Agency Nil, which is when they came up with this ultra simple, ultra ‘on brand’ idea:

    Agency Nil announces their Spotter Program

    Agency Nil announces their Spotter Program

    Catching up again with Agency Nil’s founders, they explained the concept a little more:

    “If a person connects Agency Nil with a business that would be interested in our services and they become a client within a year, Agency Nil will give the person who refers them 10% of the first payment they receive (from $100 to $100,000 or more…).  This person is called an Agency Nil Spotter.  All it takes to become one is an email to Agency Nil introducing the potential client (with the client cc’d, of course). Then the Spotter’s referral is documented.  When Agency Nil get paid, the Spotter gets paid. Simple.”

    We love the idea of an agency experimenting with new business in this way.  A smart move that painlessly exploits an era where networking and sharing useful information has never been easier.  What’s more, it’s in keeping with the spirit of their launch which, as they put it at the time: “It’s a win/win.  And that’s the kind of business we like to be in.” Agency Nil also draw attention to the fact they’re putting into practice a simple way for talented individuals to profit from their connections: “Isn’t it about time people started to get rewarded for the networks they’ve built?”

    Of course this isn’t the first time an agency has used crowd sourcing to find prospective marketing clients.  Who knows, will people really refer a hot prospect?  How reliable will the connections be?  Will it tend to be for small projects only, or will Agency Nil land a multi-million dollar account this way?  They may hit some bumps in the road along the way, but to us this approach looks like a natural next step for them and a dead simple, innovative solution to an age old problem. So again, we say hats off to Agency Nil and good luck.

    If you want to sign-up as an Agency Nil Spotter, send an email to Spotter@AgencyNil.com.

  • Will work for all it’s worth – the launch of Agency Nil

    20th May 09

    Posted by Ben Malbon

    Posted in transformational change

    Almost everyone who works at an agency has a few favourite horror stories about the particularly tricky negotiation into their first position. The crazed lunacy of certain graduate recruitment processes (mine still gives me nightmares), the deeply uncomfortable hours spent in creative directors’ offices having your book taken to pieces, begging your way onto an intern programme, starting out in the mailroom. It’s always been tough. It’s part of the folklore. At least the reward’s in the car park.

    But now it’s tougher than ever. No, really. A punchy piece by Jef Loeb on TalentZoo.com, “Same as It Never Was“, published just recently, paints a undeniably grim picture of an industry undergoing dramatic change. Loeb’s themes – structural transformation, accelerating evolution of new media trends, financial woes – are painfully familiar. As he notes, even if we’ve passed the bottom of the trough, our “shared profession is more than a long link or two from being at the top of the food recovery chain”.

    Imagine now that you’re just graduating from your Ad School or coming to the end of a degree or Fine Arts programme. Suddenly the tales we recount of our elaborate scheming to get a job out of college look like some kind of joke. Where would you start today?

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