Maja Pawinska Sims 01 Aug 2018 // 6:29AM GMT
LONDON — Frank managing directors Andrew Bloch and Alex Grier have become managing partners at the creative comms agency, as part of a wider refresh of its leadership structure and positioning.
Bloch co-founded Frank in 2000 with Graham Goodkind, who remains as chair of the company but stepped back in the spring to a part-time role, working in the business 1.5 days a week and “providing counsel and insight”, according to Bloch.
Goodkind is still a shareholder in the company: 25% is owned by members of the Frank team, while 75% is held by Enero (formerly The Photon Group), which bought Frank in 2007.
The move means that Bloch and Grier have split Frank’s client portfolio between them, as well as running the day-to-day operations of the agency.
The duo are investing in other leaders at the agency, including appointing two new client services directors: Melissa Robinson, previously an associate director at Fever PR with a specialism in consumer entertainment, and another to be announced in September.
Frank’s first planning and strategy director will also be announced in September and the agency is in the process of hiring a digital communications planner and a senior strategist. In addition, Frank has appointed its first creative director, Graeme Anthony — previously general manager of the agency’s Manchester business, Manc Frank — who has already built a creative team of four.
The agency is also focusing on building the corporate profiling and B2B side of the business, under the leadership of editorial director Ryan Sketchley.
Bloch told the Holmes Report: “We’re about to reach the grand old age of 18, but we never want to grow up. We want to continue to be true to our foundations and our ethos of 'talkability', but we’ve reinvigorated it.
“We’re well known as an agency for coming up with disruptive, bold, creative ideas, but as the marketing world has moved on, where previously a campaign or stunt relied purely on earned media to generate talkability, now to give an idea its full potential it needs to be integrated. We need to be able to build in paid comms, influencer marketing and owned channels to ensure great ideas achieve their potential across all channels, and the new team will allow us to do that.”
Grier added: “If we look at the history and pantheon of Frank campaigns, our starting point was never ‘do we have a good PR idea?’, it was always ‘do we have a good idea?’ that we delivered through PR. We see that lead creative can come from anywhere and we would like it to come from us – we’ve always believed that creative that earns attention on the right channels is so much more powerful.”
As well as rebooting its website to reflect the renewed focus on its trademarked talkability proposition, the agency has also developed what it believes to be the world’s first client feedback app, Frank Feedback, where clients can answer a quarterly questionnaire covering various criteria and send instant feedback to the agency board.
“We speak to clients all the time and encourage face-to-face meetings but a lot of clients like the ease of tapping and swiping,” said Bloch. “We beta tested it for six months with three clients and have now rolled it out across all our clients, and we’re considering licensing it out to other agencies.”
Recent wins for the agency have included digital photo service Photobox, dating site Badoo, and the Israel Tourist Board.