Each week we interview one of our members to find out a bit more about them and their work in the Greater Manchester digital sphere. This week we're speaking with Altrincham-based digital agency, Cunning Plan.
What does your organisation do?
We’re a branding & digital marketing agency, home to an eclectic team of experts that include; strategists, designers, social media masters, website developers, search enthusiasts and wordsmiths. We work for a number of national and North West-based clients to deliver brilliant results and help them achieve their objectives.
What do you think is currently the biggest issue facing the digital and tech industry?
The balance between automation and authenticity; personalisation and marketing automation has become incredibly sophisticated, to the point where it is sometimes a challenge to tell if a customer is dealing with a human or a robot.
Customers are looking for an authentic relationship with a brand, but that takes time that most marketing teams don’t have - which is where automation steps in. When it’s done right, it creates a streamlined way of moving a customer through the buying process, but when done poorly it becomes spammy and makes brands look amateur.
What is your organisation’s biggest achievement?
From starting out over 10 years ago with two clients to building a successful business without compromising on our vision to deliver fantastic, creative work and to partner with great clients that love working with us. We recently won a competitive pitch to rebrand Warrington - the brief will see us flexing all of our marketing muscle to deliver creativity and tech know-how. I think this reflects the strong reputation and team that we have working in the agency at the moment.
What would you consider to be your organisation's biggest challenge?
Recruitment. There is an ever-increasing demand for new skills and innovation, but there simply is not enough people to deliver it. We are working closely with local universities and organisations to help bring on the next generation of experts and to work towards filling the skills gap.
What do you think the future looks like for Manchester’s digital and tech sector?
The future is positive because Manchester is a city that believes in itself, thanks to a rich heritage when it comes to innovation. It’s the beating heart of the North West - it started in the first industrial revolution and now it appears that it is at the forefront of what people are hailing as the Fourth Industrial Revolution. It’s a city that is always quick to adopt new technology and trends, thanks to its spirit of enterprise - this confident swagger has been rewarded and made it a magnet for capital investment in technology.
Talent and ideas are developing in the city and with established players on our doorstep this is the place to be for businesses and individuals who want to be part of the next big thing.
Tell us something we might not know about your company?
MD James Adam is a certified LEGO Serious Play facilitator - meaning he is legitimately allowed to play with Lego at work - and get things done whilst doing it.
Want to speak to Cunning Plan? You can contact them here.
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