It has been just over two weeks since the launch of The Juniverse & the website is gaining momentum. Traffic is growing, the audience is responding & creativity is flowing. As a digital agency you often design & develop a product for a client, then wrap it with a pretty bow and ship it off. Not with the Juniverse! We have had a lot of fun continuing to develop the editorial team while maintaining this new Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle online magazine for celebrity stylist June Ambrose.
Some might say ugh, why would you want to continue to maintain a clients website? Especially if you have build it with a CMS for them to manage it themselves. But let me mention the OH SO VERY COMMON experience of designing something great that you deliver to the client, only to check back a few months later to find it an almost unrecognizable HOT MESS. Yeah, we know! It happens often and it is really upsetting. Here you have taken such care to create something beautiful and now you are almost embarrassed to have your agency portfolio link to the live version. So THAT is why we are thrilled to continue managing the editorial & art direction of the Juniverse. Continued creative direction, continued development, continued improvements & continued ideation.
There are a few ingredients that make this type of client relationship work:
Trust. A client/agency relationship that is based on trust. Clients that micro manage the process will not foster productivity.
Passion. You have to love it to do it. In our case a number of our staff have a tremendous passion for fashion making the development of editorial & art direction something that they continue to put their heart and soul into.
Collaboration. When you are working this closely with a client on an ongoing basis, you must collaborate productively. When the agency is put in a position that they are simply order takers and not encouraged to bring new ideas to the table ongoing, the project will go stale.
Honesty. Your client has now become an extension to your team, you must be completely honest and direct with each other. Leave the politics, illusions & dangling carrots elsewhere. When you have complete transparency as to the clients budgets, business needs, aspirations & frustrations you WILL be extremely productive. You will avoid wasting your energy on concepts and initiatives that are never going to come to fruition. That will lead to the destruction of all of the above necessary ingredients to a healthy client/agency relationship.
So this seems almost painfully obvious, but at the same time any agency folk reading this will say “yeah wouldn’t that be nice, not gonna happen”. So why I am writing this blog post? Well, it does happen & it can happen! And at BBTF we believe it MUST happen. No matter the size of your agency or client account, it is important to instill your core values into your client/agency relationship. You do not need to work in a vacuum, you do not need to play the constant guessing game to where is their motivation lives, you do not need to operate that way. There is a window of time at the start of every client relationship that determines the ongoing dynamic, take that opportunity to embed Trust, Passion, Collaboration and Honesty into your agency team and your clients. You will find the experience as satisfying as we have found be a part of The Juniverse.