Link To Guest Website: King Fish Media

Title: “How Do I Pick A Marketing Agency?”
Guest: Cam Brown – King Fish Media
Interviewers: Nathan Gobes – Radio Entrepreneurs & Phil Sharkey – The Hire Authority

Click here to read the transcript

Nathan (0s):
Welcome back radio entrepreneurs, listeners and fans. I’m producer Nathan Gobes filling in for Jeffrey Davis. Once again, I’m very excited this morning because I have a co-host with me, Phil Sharkey, the president of the Hire Authority. Someone you may have seen on the other side of the, the interview camera, but here he’s on my side. Welcome Phil.

Phil (20s):
Thank you, Nathan. Looking forward to it. Looking forward to speak with our guests today.

Nathan (24s):
Yeah, we have a great guest. We have Cam Brown CEO of Kingfish Media. Welcome Cam.

Cam (31s):
Thanks. Hey Nathan, how are you

Nathan (33s):
Doing well, thank you for joining us today. So I wanted to open it up and start by asking you, tell us about king fish media, tell our listeners and viewers what the company is about.

Cam (45s):
Sure thing. We are a branding marketing advertising agency. We’re based on the north shore of Boston. We’re in our 21st year. And during that time, we’ve certainly been through a lot of iterations of the agency, but they haven’t been sort of starting stops. They’ve been evolutions and sort of the firepower of what we bring to our clients, you know, as, as really changed over the years. And it’s done. So to say better reflect how clients want to work with an agency. There was, there was a pretty strict sort of breakout of agencies and agency responsibilities, you know, 10 years ago, 15 years ago.

Cam (1m 27s):
And as we’ve listened to clients and I speak for everybody, I think as we listen to clients, we sort of honed the offerings that we bring them. And we don’t, we don’t say, if you work with us, you got to do this. You know, we, we’re a lot more flexible and I think a lot smarter in our approach. So that’s, that’s who we are.

Phil (1m 47s):
Yeah. Can I have to jump in right away now a lot with my clients and the first thing that comes up is, and I know there’s a lot of different ways to go about it, but I often get, how do I pick a marketing agency? I have small, medium and large companies and they just don’t know how to wait into the process and, and they want to be small yet large. And I know that would be an area. I think that you guys would Excel it, but how do they go about picking a marketing agency?

Cam (2m 11s):
Yeah. You know, I would say for those folks, word of mouth is, is going to be a really big one. I informally pull people all the time. How do you find an agency? I don’t mean us. I just mean in general, how do you find an agency? Right. And I think we all tend to turn to trusted advisors. And by that I don’t necessarily mean boards of advisors, you know, but I mean, people who run businesses, who you think have been successful, who you think of, you know, carved out a USP that, that you think is smart. So that is certainly a big one. And then, you know, you, you really need to evaluate how strong their website presence is. If you’re looking to them for marketing support, they better tell their own story, pretty darn well, you know, and, and enough so that you look at it and say, these guys seem clever.

Cam (2m 59s):
They seem smart, but they also show a broad variation of creative and design. That makes me think this isn’t a one size fits all place. I think the other thing I’d add is it’s often beneficial to look geographically, you know, and again, it sort of depends on the size and the scope of who you’re trying to target, but often someone in your town is going to be more helpful to you because you can spend time with them. You know, if they want to present creative, they jump in their car and drive 10 minutes. They don’t fly five hours. So I, I would, I would say those things are kind of the core kind of basis points.

Phil (3m 39s):
It feels so white in this remote world we live in there still is a thing for geography, right. And be able to put boots on the ground and get in and come into my office and see what I got going and to help in that regard,

Cam (3m 51s):
Absolutely filling in the last three weeks we’ve been on site, I don’t know, five or six times with clients primarily to present creative. I mean, it’s, it’s so much more tangible and, and frankly so much more fun when you guys do it, when we all do it together, you know, and I can read your face and our creatives art director can look at you and be like, I don’t think they’re buying this. They don’t like very difficult to do in the format. You know, online it’s really is.

Nathan (4m 18s):
Yeah. Yeah. That makes sense. Another question that I hear a lot of startups asking when they’re in those early stages and you know, money is tight and there, you know, in several series is, or of funding or, or at the beginning stages, when do they start to bring in their marketing agency? When do they start thinking about their branding and launch of all that?

Cam (4m 43s):
Yeah, it’s the answer that’s really varied. And you know, it depends on the knowledge base of the employees, themselves. Often companies, we find the companies, we work with a lot of startups, you know, well-funded startups typically. And we find that they can articulate sort of their value proposition very early on. They got it. They know why they’re in business, right? But when it’s time for them to say, look, we now have to push out. We need to brand, we need to make people aware of us. What do you need? Well, you need sort of a messaging platform to go with it. And everything needs to come back to certain pillars of information. That’s often where it’s time to bring in someone from the outside.

Cam (5m 28s):
You know, we can listen to you and, and we can understand who it is you’re trying to reach. But do you know, as that company, what platforms are most effective to reach them? What channels, you know, am I going to be online? Am I going to be on radio? Am I going to be on cable? Am I going to be on outdoor? Am I going to be on social? What’s the right mix for each one of those audiences, typically that’s above and beyond what a startup can do. Now when as a startup grows and starts to build out their own marketing department, they’re going to have a lot more of those capabilities in house. And we understand that we totally understand that. What we don’t like to see is, you know, let us do the first kind of SWAT at this thing.

Cam (6m 11s):
And then we’ll call you well, then we’re fixing things right then we’re reworking what they thought was sort of their messaging into something a lot more viable for the company. So I’d say earlier is better in almost all cases. And if I could add one thing to that, that I just thought of, you know, it’s not unusual for the CEO and the CEO ought to be able to articulate what the company’s all about and what the vision is. Sometimes CEOs, you know, are, are so into what they’re doing. And so focused on whether it’s that series a you talked about, or whether it’s closing those first three customers, they don’t, they don’t spend enough time talking to the rest of the staff and making sure that they’re in lock step with his or her vision and using the right language.

Cam (7m 7s):
And that’s a very powerful thing to use an agency for as well as internal communication. You know, it doesn’t have to be a big heavy, it doesn’t have to be something you spend a lot of money on, but this sort of falls into best practices, you know, for lunch.

Phil (7m 20s):
Yeah. Much like my industry that, that you, I don’t know if you have a niche industry that you deal with or it could have just evolved to just about every business that is out there needs some type of marketing and branding to be successful. So is it a certain niche that you work specifically with, or are there just any company that, that is viable? It could, it could be a potential client.

Cam (7m 42s):
Yeah, Phil. So certainly we have some areas where most of our clients reside and, you know, that’s a matter of gaining reputation and we’ve got, you know, a great reputation in five or six niches out there, but we do things a little bit differently. And the core to our success is the partners that we bring in to work with specific clients. We typically refer to them as subject matter experts, and that can run the gambit. That can be people who are content providers that can be people who have a specialty in a certain kind of video approach can be photographers. It could be UX UI. You know, sometimes if we’re going into an area where we collectively as good strategists and marketers may not have spent a lot of time in a particular vertical, we bring in one or two people from the outside, you know, to be consultants with us and to the client.

Cam (8m 36s):
So the client gets access to people who understand their industry, at least as well as they do, but have the added benefit of having a pulpit and, you know, having a following on social media people listen when they talk. And we think that’s so important. We think third-party endorsement is so important to our clients launch and success.

Nathan (8m 57s):
Before we go ahead, one more question, which is that, you know, I think a lot of companies, whether they’re early stage or even late stage stage, and well-established, they tend not to have a lot of money allocated for marketing. Maybe if they’ve worked with you and that they understand the value of it, they might, but either way, do you have any tips or advice for those that are looking to take advantage of marketing efforts in a, in a smarter way and in a way that’s more cost-effective.

Cam (9m 27s):
Wow. Yeah, absolutely. And you’re right. A lot of startups certainly have not allocated enough. And if they’re looking over at the VCs and saying, Hey, we want more money. You know, take your time getting that answer. It’s it’s not coming. But you know, the number one thing I think any company should do is a really robust competitive analysis. And there’s a reason for that. It’s not to keep you busy. The reason is you need to know a, what your competitors are doing. You need to know how they’re saying it, how their messaging, what’s their tone and voice, what space have they carved out as kind of their space. And if they put their efforts and energy behind, where are they, what platforms are they, what channels are they spending money?

Cam (10m 11s):
And once you understand all of that, then you can identify where’s the open space for you. You know, you, you don’t want to look the same. You don’t want to speak the same. You always want to be one step ahead. So we believe in outsmarting competition. And that means that after you’ve done this analysis, then you start to carve out where is your primary investment going to go and work? The hardest, the fastest test. This is not an, all, this is not give me everything you got and I’m going to throw it into this panel, test small control groups, right? So that you can go back to the VCs and say, you didn’t give us all the money we asked for. We ran the test.

Cam (10m 51s):
We believe that this approach will have the greatest efficacy based on these results. And if you can go in and show a dollar in $10 out in a particular group, the VCs are going to throw money at you all day. Right. But they’re gonna make you go through your paces for that. So, you know, be, you know, it’s a very scientific approach before the art gets to kick in and, and we really recommend doing that step. Right.

Nathan (11m 16s):
That makes sense. Absolutely. Yeah. Well, that’s great advice and we really appreciate you coming on today. Cam this was cam brown CEO of king fish media cam. If people want to get in touch with you, find out more about king fish or how you can work with them, what’s the best way for them to do so?

Cam (11m 34s):
Well, you can start at our website king fish, You can call me directly (978) 832-1410. And my email is simple. See brown at king fish, I’m always happy to take a call and, and talk to you about what you’re trying to do.

Nathan (11m 52s):
Excellent, excellent. And Phil president of the higher authority, who is our background check and screening reporter for radio entrepreneurs, how can people reach you if they’re interested,

Phil (12m 4s):
Nathan, the same as I can mention very H I R E a U T or our number is 5 0 8 2 3 0 5 9 0 1. And we have people answering phones and like many companies can get right through.

Nathan (12m 18s):
Great. I want to thank you both for joining us today on radio entrepreneurs. Of course, radio entrepreneurs can be found on our websites, but also LinkedIn. We have a thriving community there, a YouTube we’re always putting out videos and many podcast channels as well. So thank you both. And we’ll be back with more on radio entrepreneurs.

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