Naomi Bacon, Founder of Tandem Collective

Everyone seems to be paid the identical quantity at Tandem and it really works. Intrigued?

Tandem Collective is a community-led advertising and marketing company, specialising in campaigns for the guide publishing and movie industries. They work intently with guide, movie and TV lovers on Instagram and TikTok to create immersive, distinctive content material which is delivered straight into the communities that others are attempting to achieve.

Founder, Naomi Bacon takes a while from her busy schedule to share her journey within the hope that can encourage Enterprise Issues’ readers …

What are Tandem’s USPs?

Most advertising and marketing companies speak about being consultants in neighborhood progress however they don’t have their very own neighborhood round them, which feels disingenuous. Now we have constructed our total providing round placing the neighborhood first, delivering what they need and wish.

Our flat construction has made the headlines; we’re all paid the identical, together with me. For me, the true which means of inclusivity is that everybody is valued equally; all of us have totally different talent units and we’re all of worth. This promotes loyalty and roots out folks which are self-serving or aggressive within the unsuitable methods – that’s not what Tandem is. We’re all bold and pushed, however that’s channeled into our work reasonably than particular person standing or comparability inside the firm.

I recruit folks with out particular advertising and marketing expertise; I don’t need them bringing realized behaviours from the business, good or unhealthy, as a result of my crew – who come from an enormous number of totally different skilled and life backgrounds – have such a way of multiperspectivity. All of them love books, that’s how we discovered one another, and we function as a hive thoughts – no one owns an concept, we kind them collectively, and that collective of various views is what produces our inventive and contemporary concepts.

What’s the primary drawback Tandem solves to your prospects?

Useful resource – There merely wasn’t an company serving the publishing business.

Having been in-house, I used to be attempting to work with mismatched budgets and companies delivering proposals which weren’t related or proper for the publishing business. We’re the one firm providing this type of service to the publishing business, which is why we’re rising so shortly globally, and we pleasure ourselves on providing an reasonably priced choice which understands the useful resource restrictions and the neighborhood to which we’re advertising and marketing. Shoppers typically touch upon the creativity and enthusiasm of our team- they virtually appear shocked!

What made you begin Tandem? – did you wish to rock the established order, was it a problem or a niche within the market that you possibly can fill?

I discovered 9-5 company construction tough in so some ways – I’m up at 5am, I prefer to be lively and get going within the mornings, not wait till 9am. I discovered the rigidity very claustrophobic, and that impacted negatively upon my creativity. I additionally had severe household points which wanted my consideration and power, and it was not doable to juggle and progress inside a company job whereas giving these points the eye they wanted. Once I arrange by myself, I didn’t must go anyplace, I may nonetheless do the work I like to a excessive customary however I may be current with the folks I really like and be there for them.

That filters down now to the entire team- life occurs and all of us have the area, flexibility and assist to navigate that whereas nonetheless doing our greatest work. After all we’re all going to be extra inventive and do higher work if we will go for walks, hike up mountains, hang around on the seaside, spend time with our households. I don’t must reply to anybody’s stuctures of what a piece day ought to appear to be; we get pleasure from an unimaginable steadiness.

What are your model values?

Braveness, compassion and connection.

Braveness just isn’t about not having worry, it’s about the way you take care of that worry. Beginning the enterprise was a brave act – essentially the most terrifying and most rewarding factor I’ve ever carried out – and it’s the identical with each new marketing campaign. We take leaps and we belief ourselves to take action.

Compassion – understanding that everybody is a person, work just isn’t a be all and finish all, however that it may well deliver a lot pleasure. Our crew is numerous – folks from all walks of life, with neurodiversity, well being situations, disabilities, differing household conditions, our personal challenges. And that leads me to our closing worth; connection.

Our reference to shoppers, neighborhood and crew members is every thing; it must be significant and real. I wished to create a crew that might really feel like a discovered household, and I’ve. We genuinely love one another and don’t must carry out or put on skilled masks round one another. We deal with our shoppers like human beings – we don’t do ‘tremendous company’ – we would like them to get pleasure from and have enjoyable working with us, and that builds respect too; we don’t mistreat one another.

Do your values outline your decision-making course of?

Completely. They’re in every thing I do.

Is crew tradition integral to your online business?

It’s every thing. We run a yearly retreat in Italy, we get collectively for Christmas, we journey to co-work with one another – as a completely distant crew it’s essential to have significant, in-person connection at any time when we will. There’s no compelled enjoyable, simply real downtime collectively – enjoyable on the seaside, consuming gelato, studying collectively, having amusing. Now we have a zero-alcohol coverage in any respect our gatherings. Now we have folks in restoration on the crew and we’ve all seen what occurs when an excessive amount of alcohol is concerned in work conditions in our prior jobs; now we have a tremendous time with out it and taking booze off the desk – actually – makes everybody really feel far more snug. If a boss or firm feels that free booze or the occasional free pizza on a Friday is the best way to their workers’ hearts, they’re lacking the purpose and misunderstanding these people.

What do you do to go the additional mile to indicate your crew you respect them?

Together with the retreats and residential gatherings I run for the crew, that are larger gestures of appreciation, now we have day by day reveals of gratitude and friendship. We every ship out a ‘Thursday thanks’ to somebody we’re feeling grateful for – privately reasonably than publicly. Now we have common ‘good friend chats’ the place we carve out time to speak out what’s happening in our lives outdoors of Tandem, and now we have such shut friendships inside the firm which makes the tradition fairly easy; all of us get pleasure from being there, and it reveals.

By way of your messaging do you assume you speak on to your shoppers in a transparent trend?

Sure, but additionally in an affectionate, familial manner – we don’t do company chat. We voicenote, now we have amusing, we take away the jargon and pomp, and we don’t ‘gatekeep’; I used to be voicenoting a long-standing member of our neighborhood final night time, simply to test in, no agenda. I’m very clear with the neighborhood concerning the working of the corporate, which I feel folks respect.

What’s your tackle inflation and rates of interest – are you going to move that on to your prospects or let your margins take a success and reward buyer loyalty in these harder occasions?

We elevated 10% throughout all providers, yr on yr, however stay very reasonably priced. This worth improve was needed as now we have had a considerable lower in our  revenue margins as a result of results of inflation on our prices. Nearly all of our income are reinvested within the firm to finance present and future campaigns. We’re extremely depending on this capital as now we have no debt and don’t have any plans to accumulate any.

How typically do you assess the info you pull in and handle your KPIs and why?

On a month-to-month foundation I sit with the info, however in saying that, I’ve by no means had a inflexible marketing strategy;  which contributes to the success of Tandem. I have a look at the info however I simply do the job because it presents itself. I hate the phrases ‘targets’ and ‘KPI’s – generally you are feeling pressured to drag a goal out of a hat, then if you happen to don’t meet it, you are feeling prefer it’s a measure of your functionality when it isn’t.

The KPIs that matter to me are values-based; do I’ve a cheerful, wholesome crew? Are we having fun with what we do? Do our shoppers preserve coming again to us? As a result of when these issues are in place, the numbers are nice. If not, I’m going again to Connection; how can we higher join to enhance issues?

Is tech taking part in a a lot bigger half in your day-to-day working of Tandem?

Our firm is completely on-line, so we’re very reliant on social media platforms, however we preserve issues fairly easy. We’re utilizing platforms like Discord, however we attempt to restrict the variety of apps and platforms that our neighborhood want with the intention to have interaction with us; we wish to encourage a steadiness our high quality on-line providing with encouraging significant offline time.

What’s your angle to your opponents?

Competitor evaluation is a large factor for some nevertheless it’s not one thing I take into consideration – firstly we don’t actually have any opponents, as no one else does what we do, and secondly I attempt very arduous to not examine myself or this firm to some other people or corporations. I concentrate on our aims, targets and successes – my mind switches off after I hear somebody gloating about turnover, as a result of it’s simply not my focus. Revenue doesn’t inform the total story of that firm and the people inside it. All of it comes again to our values; they’re what matter to me.

It may be a lonely and pressured place to be because the lead resolution maker of the enterprise. What do you do to calm down, recharge and hone your focus?

Almost all selections are made as a collective, so it’s both the complete crew or the challenge managers and I making a closing name on one thing collectively. I calm down and recharge by climbing – I typically work from a climbing wall – doing yoga, biking, mountaineering, sitting on the seaside. I begin my day very early with an hour of meditation, studying, some Duolingo; something peaceable that units me up for the day. That sacred hour is essential. My way of life and setting encourages that manner of recharging – I chase the solar, and proper now I’m in Cape City. I don’t work Fridays, not one of the crew do – we learn, get impressed and recharge ourselves.

Do you imagine within the 12 week work technique or do you make for much longer planning methods?

We do have long run targets however we work primarily in quarters, so shorter sprints – it helps us to concentrate on the right here and now, which is why our marketing strategy is so versatile.

What’s your organization’s eco technique?

All of us work remotely on-line, so our footprint may be very small, however we used to print sources for our neighborhood and shoppers – now we offer all of these sources digitally to minimise our influence additional. We additionally work with native companies and small companies for send-out gadgets to minimise postage influence.

What three issues do you hope to have in place inside the subsequent 12 months?

I wish to arrange native pods in territories the place reasonably priced options haven’t – till now – been obtainable, together with India, South Africa, and smaller territories throughout Europe. We have already got a robust presence in Italy and Spain, however I’d prefer to see particular growth into Germany and France, I wish to put money into people inside these communities. I additionally wish to develop our movie and theatre providing, and we’re making thrilling plans in that space. Aside from that, I would like issues to proceed as they’re – a robust, glad crew; inventive tasks rolling in; enthusiastic shoppers – a life-style enterprise that I’m proud to be part of.

Cherry Martin

Cherry is Affiliate Editor of Enterprise Issues with duty for planning and writing future options, interviews and extra in-depth items for what’s now the UK’s largest print and on-line supply of present enterprise information.

Back To Top