Archive for the ‘Messaging’ Category

EP36: Agency messaging | Roland Gurney | Treacle Copywriters

January 6th, 2020

For marketers, brand positioning, proposition, messaging and tone of voice are no less fundamental than a visual identity. However, as we’ve discussed here before, for agencies –  largely SMEs and often without dedicated marketing resource – finding the time to achieve clarity here, let alone implement change, is a challenge. 

Back in episode 6 we talked about maximising agency websites and touched on positioning copy and about us pages. We dug deeper into agency positioning the following year when we talked to David C. Baker in episode 13. There’s so much more to say about messaging so I was very happy to stumble across the Treacle Copywriters blog (thank you LinkedIn) full of no-nonsense advice for agencies.

In this episode I talk to Treacle founder Roland Gurney about the common messaging pitfalls and the opportunities for agencies to express their difference.

We’re giving away a copy of Roland’s recommended read: Cashvertising by Drew E. Whitman. Listen in to find out how to win. 

Agency websites (part one). Don’t forget the people.

February 12th, 2014

It is a truth universally acknowledged that as the internet has matured and our relationship with it transformed, the role of the agency website has shifted significantly.


No longer simply an online brochure or portfolio, an agency site can, and should perform as a (relatively) low-cost, living and breathing new business person. And yet, so many are failing to deliver as a new business tool.


I’m going to leave SEO alone for this post, needless to say, being found in search has never been more important but I’ll come back to that in another post. Likewise, I’m going to leave navigation, messaging, case studies and blogging – more (so much more) of that later.


For now I’d just like to focus on people. Because we are a people business. Ask most agency owners and they will tell you that most of their new business comes from their network, either as referrals from past or existing clients or suppliers and colleagues. And, whilst recommendations follow the delivery of good work, good work happens when there is a good relationship.


So why are so many agency sites completely omitting to talk about their people?


On too many sites, there is no indication of the founders or management team on the about us page, or worse, no-one’s name on the contact page.


Not very personal, not too welcoming. Remember you want to make it easy for people to buy from you. If I’m a new business prospect, I don’t really want to phone the switchboard and ask to speak to the person who deals with new business, or send an email to “whom it may concern” at a generic email address. And if I’ve been given your name by someone recommending you, I’d quite like to be able to see you appear somewhere on the agency website with contact email address or phone number.


My quick straw poll today has observed that PR agencies are better at this, with digital agencies are falling behind by some margin and design somewhere in the middle. There’s a full Gunpowder survey of agency sites in the making, with results available in the spring. Feel free to sign up for updates here.