Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

By David Ganezer
Observer Staff Writer 

"We multi-screen, we engage, we plan. That's How a Brand Connects, Disrupts, and Gets Noticed."

How a TK Refugee from Sheffield Hallam, Brought the British Edge to WeWork on Broadway and 6th St.

 

Nicole Levings: Can an English Girl find happiness doing brand strategy and creative, in a Santa Monica WeWork office?

14 years ago, Nicole Levings graduated from Sheffield Hallam University with a degree in business and marketing, and began her career in advertising. She has always worked with "creative agencies on the client services side, where I developed a passion for brand," she says. "Ultimately brand strategy and creative, and that's where I've stayed ever since."

"Back in the day, people would call a marketer and say, we need a brochure, and they would just do it. There was no rhyme or reason no thinking about evoking an emotional connection with the logo and the brand.

One day, Levings started working for TK in their Leeds headquarters. "Three years into that relationship, I was approached to start TK's West Coast office. It was a massive opportunity for me; all my hard work was starting to pay off. But I had never wanted to live abroad!" she recalls.

"When I moved here 3 years ago I knew no one, and had never been to America before, but I my objective was to start this office. And here I am, 3 years later!"

What is TK's edge? "Our difference is we are a British agency with British design. I do have one designer here who supports, but we send all the creative back to the UK. They work while we sleep. The time zone can create some challenges but the fact that they're working whilst we're sleeping is hugely beneficial for our clients. But our product displays that British edge, that British difference, and we're finding our clients really really like that.

"I've since been appointed a director of TK Agency. TK used to be 'Turnkey.' When I first moved here, I was alone, I wanted to get into a co-working space, so I was in cross campus on 10th and Colorado. That was more just a place to turn up each day,

"In Sept the 6th and Broadway WeWork location opened, and I made the decision to move straight in. To build an office here that reflected the personality of our own agency..

"If you can't have your own building, what better space than a we work? It's really attractive space! Everyone here is hustling in their own way. When our clients come and visit, it makes us feel perhaps larger and a part of something bigger.

"There's always Kombucha on tap, you don't have to worry about much of your overhead, the access it gives you to other people and other companies is really really great!

"I'm one of the longstanding office people here. You can upsize or downsize quickly--it's scalable. That really works with the fluidity of your own business and your own cash flow."

"Our team here is mainly client services. 12 people design back in the UK, to make the design business. Supported by our New Business Director making sales calls, closing deals.

So, how do we service our clients?

"Our client services team kick-off by getting under the skin of a brand. What is your why? We want to understand their true North; their mission, why their clients should choose them over their competitors.

"Then we position them in the market properly, in order to create conversions.

"We have a website design team. After we design the brand, then an advertising campaign, people frequently ask us to go ahead and design the website for them.

"What do we charge? That's like asking an architect what they charge-it all depends on what you want. It starts about about $6000, and goes up to $50,000, depending on the design and functionality that's included.

"Our focus is how to fulfill the business's objective, whatever that might be-conversions, clicks, calls, or something else.

"Todays' world is very cluttered. We multi-screen, we engage, and how does a brand connect and disrupt and get noticed.

"I think in today's world where everyone wants to be the next Uber, or the next Airbnb, you can disrupt a market through they tone of voice, through your creative, not only through a website necessarily. Think about all the multiple touchpoint of a brand

Sales and support staff at TK Agency at WeWork in Santa Monica,

"For example, you've got pop up shops, which are temporary. It might be a vacant space, the landlord might allow a brand in there for 3 months. Or a Volkswagen camper van, in the middle of a pedestrian zone; but they're only there for one day.

"A brand is so much more than a logo! The way you look, the way you feel, the way you sound the tone of voice. From the first moment you chat with someone, it's so much more than just a logo.

"If you get it right, you start to build your brand equity, which increases the value of your business."

As a fully integrated marketing agency, TK provide a full suite of marketing, PR, design and digital services. For us, no challenge is too big.

https://agencytk.com/

 

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