Marketing Featured Global

Indie agency Awaken to build performance media expertise via Agnes Media acquisition

Australia – Independent full-service agency Awaken has acquired global digital marketing agency Agnes Media, targeted at building the agency’s performance media credentials in Australia, the United States, and the United Kingdom markets.

The acquisition, which is set to be finalised by the end of March, includes the transfer of Agnes Media’s client stable, along with three senior staff members and several contractors who have already moved into the Awaken team.

Agnes Media founder Charlotte Ward will continue as Awaken’s marketing director, working with both teams to ensure a seamless transition. Ward will also launch web 3.0 consultancy Around The Block, a separate entity assisting brands with projects in the blockchain and will work on joint client projects with Awaken.

The acquisition is a first for Awaken and is expected to significantly boost the agency’s Australian team, whilst also strengthening its capability to expand client campaigns in the US and UK.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to enhance Awaken’s existing offering. Agnes has a reputation for extraordinary performance media work locally in Australia and across the US and UK,” said Awaken’s founder and CEO, Chris Parker.

He also added that the acquisition will assist Awaken with bolstering its local performance team, extending its campaigns into the US and UK markets for the agency, and upscaling its team for new client opportunities.

Meanwhile, Ward commented, “This acquisition marks an exciting new chapter for both agencies, as we come together to provide even greater value to our clients. There is a strong synergy between both businesses, culturally and from a media strategy and application perspective. I’ve loved growing the Agnes brand and am excited to see what this acquisition will bring to the market.”

Last year, Agnes Media was also appointed by ‘buy now pay later’ solution ZeeFi as its digital marketing agency.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Fintech ZeeFi appoints Agnes Media to digital marketing duties

Sydney, Australia – Agnes Media, an independent media agency, has been appointed by ZeeFi, Australia’s only ‘buy now pay later’ finance solution designed specifically for the education sector, to assist them with acquisition marketing due to their proven experience scaling fintech brands, leveraging their strong focus on analytics and marketing measurement.

The appointment by ZeeFi follows rapid growth for Agnes Media which launched in 2020. The agency has a three tiered measurement-first approach which focuses on commercial growth, ongoing tests and optimisations and dashboard reporting for all clients. It also works with clients including Paytime, a HR fintech brand and payo, the world’s first eat now pay later brand.

Veni Jee, marketing manager at ZeeFi, shared, “The education sector needs additional funding options to help students access courses that are not eligible for government funding. Being the finance experts in the industry, we play a pivotal role in tearing down the financial barrier that impedes the growth of both education providers and their students.”

ZeeFi, which was recently rebranded from Study Loans, is a fintech partner for the education sector. They help education providers grow enrolments and increase cashflow through a suite of innovative finance solutions and payment plan administrative services.

For students they remove the financial barriers to quality education when government funding or upfront course fees are not available, by providing interest-free payment plans or flexible study loans.

Meanwhile, Charlotte Ward, founder and director of Agnes Media, commented, “We are delighted to be appointed by ZeeFi, to assist them in driving growth. We work with a range of fintech brands and understand the nuances these businesses face as they enter the market with a disruptive model that challenges convention. We love working with innovative companies such as ZeeFi that provide beneficial solutions to the end user through the effective application of technology.”

Agnes Media’s approach is centred around measurement for effective growth, with the belief that media investment should drive measurable results.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Agnes Media bags fintech payo’s digital marketing, performance media mandate

Sydney, Australia – Sydney-based measurement-first agency Agnes Media has been appointed by the Australian payments platform, payo, to handle its digital marketing and performance media mandate.

The app allows its users to eat and drink at its partner restaurants, cafes, and bars, and pay the bill in four fortnightly instalments with zero interest by scanning a QR code. As part of the mandate, Agnes Media will be driving payo’s awareness and consideration amongst diners and venue owners.

The partnership comes after the recently launched payo checkout, a platform enabling customers to pay their bills in seconds without needing the payo app. By scanning a unique QR code at the table, bill wait times are removed whilst also allowing customers to split the bill easily.

Taf Chiwanza, payo’s co-founder and CEO, shared that their goal is to increase the range of venues for users to choose from, whilst attracting a growing base of engaged app users. 

“We are pleased to be working with Agnes Media during this significant growth phase of our business. They were the perfect agency fit with their strong focus on analytics and measurement, and relevant experience in the fintech space,” said Chiwanza.

Meanwhile, Charlotte Ward, Agnes Media’s CEO, commented that they are delighted to be appointed as the agency partner for payo, attracting both hospitality owners and customers to use this world-class app.

“We ensure media buys are tied to key business objectives, with tailored measurement methodologies to track what is driving success resulting in a more effective ROI. This is especially relevant for fast-growth brands such as payo with aggressive expansion goals,” said Ward.

Main Feature Marketing APAC

Expert Up Close: Charlotte Ward, founder of Agnes Media

In a conversation with Charlotte Ward, founder of Agnes Media, she shared her entrepreneurial background, which fueled her desire to one day establish her own business. 

Even as a teenager in secondary school, Charlotte was able to demonstrate this character, when she developed her own business plan and launched her own organic soap company. Fast forward to her professional career, she built the Agnes Media we now have today through tremendous effort, starting as a freelancer and taking contract works.

“I always felt that we can do things better ourselves after working in various large agency corporations,” Charlotte adds.

During the conversation with Charlotte, we asked about her philosophy in leadership, by which she shared, “Empathy and transparency are at the core of my leadership style, I think this is [something many leaders missed], without this, you’re really just a business owner or a manager, you’re not a true leader.”

Charlotte emphasized, “Leadership is not something that I developed overnight, definitely, when I started out my career I was not the best manager and it’s something that comes with mentorship and learning and being able to admit to yourself when you’ve made a mistake.”

Listen to the full conversation with Charlotte over on Spotify, where she further discusses her passion for marketing measurement and the challenges she had to face in leading Agnes Media. Hear her insights as well about the biggest marketing challenge that B2B brands face nowadays. You can also view the video highlights of the conversation on our YouTube channel.

If you are a marketing or tech leader who wants to share your industry journey and insights, email us at [email protected]

Marketing Featured ANZ

Redkite’s new campaign shines light on broader impact of childhood cancer

Sydney, Australia – Cancer charity organisation Redkite has launched a new awareness campaign, which was built around the insight that family members fight their own emotional, financial, and relationship battles when their child gets cancer.

Redkite is a national charity that helps families, friends, and communities affected by childhood cancer, with mental health, financial and practical support. The campaign, developed in partnership with independent creative agency SLIK, award-winning director Josh Whiteman, and digital marketing agency Agnes Media, aims to demonstrate just how much impact children having cancer can have on the people around them.

Titled ‘Childhood cancer affects everyone’, it centres around a little boy’s family, honing into each member’s personal struggle of coping with finances, ‘holding it together’, and loneliness, amongst others.

Kate Levy, Redkite’s general manager of marketing and communications, shared that when a child is diagnosed with cancer, the focus goes to the child’s ‘medical survival’ and so there is little focus on the ‘family’s survival’, which can have long-term impacts on mental health and wellbeing across the entire family. 

“In this campaign, we wanted to say to every mum, dad, diagnosed child, sibling, and grandparent that we see you and we’re here for you. SLIK, Josh, Agnes Media, and all the amazing people who have freely given their expertise for this campaign have beautifully brought to life the everyday struggles that families have in the face of a child’s cancer,” said Levy.

Meanwhile, Alex Schieder, SLIK’s creative director, noted that after reading through comments from affected family members that Redkite had collected over the years, they knew the story was lying right in front of them, and their thoughts and feelings are sad and often shocking but are extremely powerful in helping others understand their experience. 

“Our TVC captures those heartfelt moments and shows how every family member is affected by childhood cancer. We then used OOH and digital to focus on each family member’s unique thoughts and struggles to create cut-through and build awareness for Redkite,” said Schieder.

Josh Whiteman, the director of the campaign, commented, “I’m in awe of the incredible work Redkite do and am honoured to be involved in this new campaign. Working with the brilliant creative team at SLIK, our focus from the beginning has been on the simplest expression of how cancer affects children and those around them. Using the words of real Redkite families, we’ve hopefully conveyed the genuine support and sense of hope that Redkite brings.”

The nationwide campaign features TVC and radio, supported by OOH, digital display, and social media managed by Agnes Media.

Main Feature Marketing APAC

What’s NEXT: Top tips for CRO this 2022

It’s not just e-commerce businesses that can leverage the power of conversion rate optimisation (CRO). Higher conversions mean more sales, so why wouldn’t you want to invest in optimising your conversion rates? Whether you’re an online retailer, a startup with a valuable B2B product, or an entrepreneur selling your expertise, CRO could be the key to a bigger profit margin in 2022. Here’s how.

What is CRO?

Conversion rate optimisation is all about boosting the number of people who visit your site and end up making a purchase (i.e. a ‘conversion’). That could mean they buy a physical item, sign up for a course you are offering, or anything relative to your business type – essentially, whatever you are ‘selling’ you want them to ‘buy’.

Improving your conversion rates can be done through a range of strategies, and Google Optimize is a great place to start. It’s easy to integrate on a website and will be useful as long as you have enough traffic visiting your site.

We often find brands are great at testing creative or various media tactics but fail to consider how to improve their website experience. Implementing a tool such as Google Optimize – there’s a range of others that can be used as well – allows brands to A/B test to identify ways to improve conversion rates, and ultimately drive a more profitable outcome.

Here are three tips for greater conversions:

1. Test, test, test!

Testing is the beating heart of CRO – namely, A/B testing (or split testing). This provides businesses with an opportunity to test out two or more scenarios to see which are more successful at converting website visitors. For example, if you create bespoke beauty products for a high-end brand, you may find you have more success when using high-quality imagery compared to big, bold ‘50% discount’ images, which may be more appropriate for lower-cost brands.

Whatever you decide, it is recommended you always work within a detailed framework that is specific to your business and product offering.

One great way to do CRO effectively is to build out a testing framework. You can plan ahead of time for certain things to test on-site, such as button colours (i.e. blue vs red), or changing the copy on the homepage to speak to ‘Product Feature and Benefit 1’ vs ‘Product Feature and Benefit 2’. You can then analyse the performance and incorporate the best performing button, copy, image etc. (whatever it may be) on the site whilst you continue to test and improve performance on an ongoing basis. 

2. Promote sales and offers in real-time

One of the most effective ways to convert a potential customer into a buyer is to get them excited about your products. This can be achieved by incentivising purchases through real-time awareness of promos and sales.

Though much-maligned in the early days of the internet, pop-ups on your owned site are now a critical tool for converting customers and expanding your email sign-ups. For example, you can include a pop-up for first-time shoppers that gives them a 10% off code if they enter their email. This can ‘instigate’ further exploration of your product range and incentivise them to make a purchase in a timely manner – especially if the 10% off code is only valid for a short period.

You may also consider publishing real-time sales as they occur. Whenever someone makes a purchase, a small notification will pop up on the screens of everyone else who is visiting your website. This shows your products are popular and can increase the urgency of a sale.

3. Convince potential buyers through testimonials

Especially if a potential customer hasn’t purchased anything from you before, there’s nothing more convincing about your legitimacy than a testimonial. In fact, a whopping 88% of online customers trust reviews just as much as a recommendation from family and friends.

So make sure you gather as many positive testimonials from previous buyers as possible, and then set them front-and-centre when visitors are viewing your products. It creates instant credibility in your brand and may even turn a tentative lead into a conversion.

A continuous strategy

Like most optimisation strategies, CRO isn’t a set-and-forget solution. Instead, it’s important to regularly reflect on your strategy and use analytics to find out whether it’s still working a month, six months or a year later.

Ongoing testing is a great way to continuously drive strong performance on the website whilst learning more about a brand’s audience. It’s not limited to e-commerce businesses and should be a consideration for a range of brands in various categories.

This article is written by Charlotte Ward, director of Agnes Media.

Agnes Media is a measurement-first marketing agency that drives profitable business outcomes through effective and data-based marketing efforts️.

The article is published as part of MARKETECH APAC’s thought leadership series What’s NEXT. This features marketing leaders sharing their marketing insights and predictions for the upcoming year. The series aims to equip marketers with actionable insights to future-ready their marketing strategies.

If you are a marketing leader and have insights that you’d like to share with regards to the upcoming trends and practices in marketing, please reach out to [email protected] for an opportunity to have your thought-leadership published on the platform.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Agnes Media appoints Jan Consul to senior performance manager role

Sydney, Australia – Measurement-first agency Agnes Media has announced the appointment of former Qantas marketer Jan Consul as its latest senior performance manager role, as the agency continues to record significant client growth.

He joins existing senior performance manager Riya Mukherjee, a former Googler, who was recently appointed by the agency last month.

Consul will be leading the programmatic trading and social management at Agnes Media and has extensive experience in digital performance marketing gained from a career spanning the Philippines, Singapore, and Australia.

Previously, he led the campaign execution for Qantas loyalty and airline brands at its in-house trade desk, formerly known as ‘Red Planet’ before its recent rebrand to Qantas Trade Desk. He has also worked at Havas and Starcom Singapore.

Charlotte Ward, founder and director at Agnes Media, said, “I am delighted that Jan is joining the team and bringing his wealth of experience to our clients. I have known him for a number of years, after collaborating closely while I worked at Qantas, and we had a fantastic working relationship. The role will see him leading the programmatic and social trading for our clients, in addition to managing other members of the team.”

Meanwhile, speaking about his promotion, Consul commented, “I’m really looking forward to working with Char once again, in a role which will allow me to grow both the agency team and client base. What drew me to Agnes was the innovative way it approaches campaign management with innovative and effective tactics alongside its highly agile focus. This, in addition to their diverse and growing list of clients, is what really excites me about this new opportunity.”

Making its official launch in April this year, Agnes Media has been handling multiple mandates since their launch, including fintech company Klarna as their foundational client, followed by tech-cycling firm Zolo, startups Re-Play and Jace Legal, as well as Australian fintech Paytime.

Marketing Featured ANZ

AU fintech Paytime appoints Agnes Media as media, digital marketing partner

Sydney, Australia – Fintech startup for human resources, Paytime, has appointed Agnes Media, the measurement-first agency, to manage its performance media and digital marketing to help increase the brand’s market share as an earned wage access provider.

Paytime is an Australian-owned company that provides businesses with a free tech platform offering employees the ability to access their earned wages at any time in the month.

The appointment comes after Agnes Media was referred by board member Fran Ereira, the former country director of leading global payment and shopping service at Klarna for Australia, which the agency also works with.

Charlotte Ward, Agnes Media’s CEO, said that Paytime is a highly innovative business that seeks to overcome the financial stresses and mental health issues caused by an inability for employees to access their pay when it’s needed most.

“Similar brands have seen high success in the USA and UK, and we’re excited to be a part of Paytime’s growth in Australia to provide greater access to pay for workers, by their employers,” said Ward.

The founder and CEO of Paytime, Steven Furman, said that financial and mental stress is widespread and impacted employees are less productive, engaged, and loyal to their employer, and with half of the Australian workers impacted, Paytime partners with companies to empower, educate and equip their employees by giving them access to their salary when they need it.

“Coupled with financial and mental health tools, the fintech’s platform offers an all in one, holistic financial, and mental wellbeing solution without any additional work for payroll. As a fairly new entrant into the HR fintech space, we look forward to working with Agnes Media to build our brand and drive engagement across digital channels,” said Furman.

Ereira also commented, “Having witnessed first hand how Charlotte and the team at Agnes Media can deliver real return on media investment, I was delighted to connect them with Paytime. I know they will bring their same passion and expertise as Paytime penetrates the market.”

This year, Agnes Media has also been working with clients including Zolo, Australia’s first profit-for-purpose tech-cycling company, Jace Legal, the commercial law and conveyancing business, and Re-Play UK, the sustainable tableware brand.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Agnes Media lands fast-growing startups Re-Play, Jace Legal

Australia – Agnes Media, the agency that prides itself on having measurement-first and metric-focused strategies to help business owners ensure media alignment with key business objectives, has announced that it has acquired two new clients – Re-Play and Jace Legal – fast-growing companies in the startup scene. Agnes Media will be amplifying their digital presence across various platforms.

The first new client, Re-Play, is an established brand in the USA, New Zealand, and Australia. The brand offers tableware products that are not only durable and eco-friendly but affordable as well—all without compromising their quality goodness. The products, made from recycled milk containers, promote recyclability and sustainability with vibrant colors that are sure to make children’s meals a hundred times more enjoyable. Together with Agnes Media’s support, the brand is now expanding to the United Kingdom.

Fenna Brown, head of Re-Play UK, said, “When looking for an agency to partner with, choosing Agnes was a no-brainer. The team has a track record of working with small businesses like ours to launch and scale internationally. They have a real sense of professionalism coupled with a no-ego approach—constantly monitoring and flexibly moving to spend to where it will have the highest impact. For me, transparency is key and their dashboard gives a clear view of what is going on, so I’m never left in the dark.”

Jace Legal, on the other hand, specializes in commercial law and conveyancing services in New South Wales.

Charlotte Ward, Agnes Media’s owner and founder, shared to MARKETECH APAC that the partnership with both companies was obtained through word-of-mouth and referral from previous clients. According to Ward, Re-Play and Jace Legal are both acquisition-led accounts looking to grow significantly in the coming year. Agnes Media will be assisting them with this objective via multi-channel campaigns designed to maximize growth.

Jason Kim, the principal lawyer and owner of Jace Legal, commented, “Charlotte Ward and the team have been incredible with implementing a media and advertising strategy to meet the specific needs for our business. Knowledgeable in what they do, we have quickly seen amazing results and ROI as a result of their hard work.”

Kim adds, “What makes them different is their investment in understanding our people, our culture, our brand, and caring about us. Put simply, they are our outsourced, in-house team. We cannot recommend Agnes Media highly enough to any other brands looking for a perfect media partner!”

Ward said that the agency’s business model is entirely transparent from the buying structure as the firm doesn’t follow the outdated commission model which incentivizes agencies to encourage brands to spend more. Ward shared that through their real-time reporting, they are able to ensure clients have access to their campaign performance at any time.

“We’re excited to bring on Re-Play UK and Jace Legal as new clients to our growing roster. Both are fantastic brands in their own right. We developed a tailored approach for each of the businesses with scaling plans for each to maximize their media investment with a staggered approach, ensuring we hit key milestones before increasing their media spend. This is incredibly important for small businesses and something we craft for each of the SMBs we have the pleasure of working with,” Ward concludes.

Just recently, Agnes Media announced its new senior performance manager, Riya Mukherjee, who was formerly Google’s program manager and support expert in India.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Agnes Media appoints former Googler Riya Mukherjee as senior performance manager

Sydney, Australia – Digital marketing agency Agnes Media has appointed former Googler Riya Mukherjee as senior performance manager, as the agency continues to experience new client growth.

Having spent almost a decade at Google in India, culminating in her promotion to program manager and support expert, Mukherjee moved to Sydney in 2018 to become performance specialist at Columbus and then senior digital performance marketing manager at Alley.

Mukherjee will lead the performance planning at independent measurement-first agency Agnes Media, working across its diverse and expanding client base.

Agnes Media founder and director, Charlotte Ward said, “We are very excited to have Riya join our team and bring her infectious positive energy and fantastic knowledge, skill-set, and experience along with her.”

Ward added, “Riya will assist with managing our existing client base, overseeing the development of our expanding team while helping us grow as an agency as we build our ever-growing portfolio. The role will see Riya lead the performance planning for our clients, in addition to working alongside me in client service.”

Mukherjee said, “I’m excited to work with an agency that really understands the need to connect media performance with achieving business objectives and tying them together. This is so essential but something many agencies forget about, so I am looking forward to bringing measurement-led solutions to Agnes’ exciting clients as well as the future brands we bring on board. I’m a firm believer of marketing with compassion, and that’s one of the core values at Agnes.”

Agnes Media launched in 2020 with leading global payment and shopping service Klarna as a foundation client, with the agency managing their co-marketing performance activity. They also work with Zolo, Australia’s first profit-for-purpose tech-cycling company, Jace Legal, a commercial law and conveyancing business, and Re-Play UK, a sustainable tableware brand.