The Marketing Society Scotland’s Future Leaders assembled at the Glasgow office of Wire to hear from the company’s founders, Pam Scobbie and Lee Beattie.
In the last seven years, Pam and Lee have built an award-winning, creative marketing and digital agency, which prides itself on creating clever, creative and “famous” campaigns. As the agency has grown, the pair have leaned into their “superpowers”, with Pam taking charge of the creative direction of the business, and Lee leading on strategy and culture.
As a result, the agency has developed a strong reputation in all three areas, and have developed award-winning campaigns for their clients, which include Whyte & Mackay, Tennent’s, Magners and DF Concerts.
As creative director, Pam, who was named the PRCA’s Industry Leader of the Year in 2016, makes sure everything which leaves the agency is “unforgettable”, mentors the creative team and oversees the creative strategy for every brief.
Meanwhile, Lee, who worked with Pam for ten years at another agency prior to launching Wire, is also an award-winning leader, having previously been named Industry Lead of the Year. Lee spoke to the group about many of the reasons for the company, and her own success, including an impressive 98% staff retention rate and 100% client retention rate for the past three years.
The duo spoke about the company’s story, which started when they mapped out a vision armed only with crayons and pads of paper.
Since, they have stayed true to their ambition to make their clients famous, armed with boundless creativity and rigorous research and insight in equal measure.
The main takeaway from the presentation was the company’s desire to challenge the status quo and do things differently. Some successes which have emerged as a result are;
- Employee benefits such as a cultural allowance, flexible working and a babysitting service
- Creative campaigns, such as “Sock ‘N’ Roll for DF Concerts
- An equality board which all campaigns must run through
- A client promise which welcomes challenge and demands open and honest feedback
The agency has experienced substantial growth since its inception, and with that has come some challenges. Pam touched on the evolution of Wire, from being a family, to a team and how her own experience as a working mother has informed the culture which has been instilled within the organisation. While Lee discussed some of the processes she has put in place to prepare for growth, and some of the hidden costs to consider. When a business grows, you need more of everything; from hand towels to free fruit. That all adds up.
What’s more, the pair were generous with their book and podcast recommendations, which prompted many of the Future Leaders to head straight to Amazon and their podcast app at the end of the presentation.
Lee and Pam led an inspiring presentation, and their commitment to creativity and diversity gave plenty food for thought and some valuable learnings for members of the group to take back to their own organisations.