I’m extremely excited to announce the news of my acquisition of ARPR and what it can mean, not only for me, but also, for founder Anna Ruth and for the incredible team – many of whom have been at the agency for 5+ years. ARPR is built on two tenets: 1) thinking about its people first and 2) challenging the industry’s status quo.
First, they craft rewarding experiences for their employees, such as educational retreats, team building events, sabbaticals and stipends that advance each person’s career -ultimately shaping their paths within the agency, and beyond.
This people-first approach—the culture that is apparent when you meet each employee—is what attracted me to ARPR. I share these beliefs, both professionally and personally. In fact, the main reason we delayed this announcement several months was because I was on sabbatical after my last agency exit, and wanted to step back and prioritize family and friends. Our people at ARPR understood that and enabled me to complete my planned sabbatical before we shared the news with everyone.
Second, over the last 10 years, the communications industry evolved (a lot), but ARPR was always two steps ahead. For example, in 2016 it became the first tech PR firm to integrate inbound marketing and demand generation into its core capabilities. This pioneering spirit is why ARPR’s client work has earned industry recognition, including Best Use of Data & Measurement and Best Integrated Marketing Campaign.
Why am I telling you this? Well, a people-centric focus combined with a desire to challenge the status quo are the two ingredients I believe a great agency needs to look, feel, and be like so that clients will want to partner with them. My vision is simple: to build on what Anna Ruth, the leadership team, and our people have achieved, so we can scale the business to be both creatively obsessed and technically sophisticated. We’re on a mission to build an agency model that doesn’t exist in the marketplace today – but will be required for tech brands to stay competitive tomorrow.
As we build and scale our business, we’ll focus on the following pillars:
- People + Culture. This is our number one priority. We can’t be a great agency unless we have people who care and have empathy (for themselves, their co-workers, and for their clients). We will continue to invest in our people in unconventional ways.
- Our Work Product + Quality. We need great people to do great work, but more importantly, we need to feel comfortable pushing the envelope, experimenting with new ideas and concepts, trusting our teammates, and earning the trust of our clients when trying things that haven’t been tried before in our industry. This will require us to constantly evolve our processes and methodologies. We need to be bold and to feel bold.
- Insights + Storytelling. We are already ahead of the game in many ways. We’ll continue to invest in our tech stacks to enable true cross-channel orchestration and translate the performance gains and lessons learned into action. Our ability to tell a story before, during, and after a marketing initiative is critical for us and equally critical for our tech clients.
- Growth + Performance. If you are not growing, you are dying— it’s that simple. That’s true for us and it’s true for our clients. We will continue to invest in our growth – from our talent bench to our global footprint to our client roster.
This acquisition is a little different from many. You are not going to see major changes in staff or in what we do, or in the clients we serve. The only change we are announcing today is my addition to the team as CEO as we drive into a new chapter. Over the coming months, Anna Ruth (as Chief Strategy Officer) and I will be focusing our efforts to better serve our people, and our clients, as we build and evolve our business. We’ll focus on the areas in which each of us has passion. For me, that will include leadership, scaling our operations, and finance. For Anna Ruth, it will be client strategy, growth, and marketing. Our leadership team remains the same and our clients can continue to expect the very best from each of our people.
I couldn’t be more excited for this next chapter for our people and our clients.
All the best,