We talked to Kaz Driver, founder of Think Little Big, about digital marketing through graphic design and this is what she said about it.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Kaz Driver: Thank you for asking. We are all well. Fed up of being indoors but making sure we are staying safe. Looking forward to the vaccinations and the hope of a future that is a bit more like we used to have.
Tell us about you, your career, and how you founded Think Little Big.
Kaz Driver: I have worked in marketing for virtually my entire career but always on the client-side. I started as a Marketing Assistant and worked in a number of different companies, eventually reaching the post of Head of Marketing for an accountancy/recruitment outsourcing company based in India. The company had no marketing resource at all so I started by putting together a team of highly skilled marketing professionals out there and that is how I met Anshal Patel, the co-founder of Think Little Big Marketing, and the original members of Think Little Big Marketing.
Working in a marketing department gave me ample time to work with marketing agencies and to understand what I felt was good service and what wasn’t. When Anshal and I first talked about setting up a UK agency I knew exactly the high level of service I wanted to deliver and the honesty with which we would communicate. We do not pretend we can do something we cannot, we are open about the way we work and go above and beyond to ensure our clients are benefiting from our service. I had been made redundant (again) and the timing just seemed perfect to take that leap to the agency side – I registered the business in October 2019 and we officially launched in January 2020.
How does Think Little Big innovate?
Kaz Driver: Marketing is a fast-moving and developing industry; it is noisy and with channels like social media having such a low entry cost (time), it can be really hard to get the traction you need. The social channels, like the search channels, are pushing their algorithms so that the results heavily benefit paid submissions. So we brainstorm ideas, looking for angles, designs, concepts, that will gain the attention our clients need. Because we are small, it is easy to adopt new ways of working, introduce concept designs and try different ideas. We keep an eye on the competition, on technological developments to see how we can incorporate them in our offerings. Or if the cost makes them out of our reach, look to see how we can develop our own versions. We are nothing if not inventive.
How does the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Kaz Driver: We have lost one client outright and had to decrease our services to a couple of others to enable us to work within their budgets. So far we have been OK financially and managed to continue to gain clients throughout the pandemic but I think there will be tougher times ahead dependent upon the success of the vaccines. Some sectors are really growing which is great to see and there will be a huge bounceback when we get on top of the pandemic. Remember the roaring twenties? They came in on the back of the Spanish flu in 1918 (and the war of course). We are working with some clients to make sure they are ready to capitalize on the bounceback.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources and what are the lessons learned?
Kaz Driver: We are fortunate that we are a small team already and have actually recruited over the past few months. We could do with more people but we don’t want to risk overstretching ourselves at the moment – so we are all still working ultra hard. I am positive it will pay off in the long run.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Kaz Driver: We are at that stage where the way we manage customer relationships is going to have to change. When you are small, it is easy to give everyone the personal touch; but as you grow – well, it is getting harder. I want to ensure we have open communication with our clients, regular review meetings, feedback, gaining their insight, and ensuring we are demonstrating we are going above and beyond. So I will be looking for software to help me achieve that.
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
Kaz Driver: No, fortunately, we have not yet needed to turn to a grant. I am hoping things stay that way.
Your final thoughts?
Kaz Driver: This is absolutely the most challenging time to have launched a new business – I have only met one of our clients face to face. But being new to the market also has its advantages, we have built our client base from those businesses that have not been impacted by the pandemic and that is obviously a huge plus. We do feel like we are going into battle together though and I think that has created a very different relationship going forward. So the pandemic has actually shaped our business in a way I hadn’t previously considered (but I am so looking forward to seeing the back of it.)
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