Enfatico’s Boone on his six months at the Dell-focused agency By Sharon Goldman
Q: Does it feel like the end of a very long year?
A: No, it’s been absolutely exciting. We really are creating something designed to respond to the radically different marketing landscape we all live in. We’re getting to do it on a mammoth, global scale, starting with Dell.
Q: Do you think what Enfatico is doing is part of a trend?
A: I think it’s partly clients’ desire to reduce costs and inefficiencies and also drive better work. I think they’re tired of managing diverse resources and diverse relationships. Dell and WPP, through Enfatico, arguably [offer] the most radical response to those dynamics.
Q: Will courage have to flag slightly, considering the economy?
A: No, the economic environment reinforces what we’re doing because there’s not room for inefficiency. We were at the table when this whole economic environment started to unravel. The message [from them] was, “How do we leverage this partnership to respond to the uncertainty, and how do we carve out savings?” It’s not a conversation about ads.
Q: How does your hierarchy and structure differ from a traditional agency?
A: We have more disciplines represented at the outset, so when we get a brief, it goes to the people around the table brainstorming across channels. These are channels that may not have had a front seat at the table before.
Q: What has been your biggest challenge?
A: On the analytics side, I’d say it’s the consolidation of all the relevant data. Dell is arguably one of the most data-rich companies in the Fortune 500, so that data was all over the place, and we’ve spent a lot of time consolidating it.
Q: What do you say to people who are just waiting for that big, splashy consumer campaign?
A: That they don’t get it. Don’t get me wrong, we’re creatively driven, and we’ve done a tremendous amount of work. But taking on the work of 869 agencies is incredibly complex. When we came up with the India b-to-b campaign, [people] said they expected something splashier. But it’s actually the first global brand campaign Dell has ever launched in the small to midsize business category. There’s an SMS mobile component, which resulted in something like a 54% opt-in to receive a call from a Dell service rep. Those kinds of results are just unheard of.
Q: Who are Enfatico’s biggest detractors?
A: It’s mostly the blogosphere. But we didn’t do a job of providing a level of transparency early on. There was a huge vacuum and lots of intrigue. We were just focused on building the agency and taking on all this work.
Q: How long will it be before you don’t feel like the new kid on the block?
A: We’re actively soliciting new business. I think once we have a few more clients in the portfolio, people will say, “OK, this is real, this isn’t going away.”