The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

A Little Love Goes A Long Way …
July 4, 2014, 6:10 am
Filed under: Comment

A while back I wrote a post about how great it is to work with a client who is genuinely passionate about their brand.

I talked about how this pride and belief transfers into a working relationship that combines purpose with infectious excitement and that tends to spill over into everything you do together.

Well I’ve just had another sort-of example of it … though this time, it’s more a story about when clients and agencies have a genuinely great and trusting relationship.

Except it involves me, which makes the whole thing weird.

So recently, one of our NIKE clients asked if I could do a presentation to their global team.

The request went via Bryan, the business director on NIKE at Wieden.

Because he has a great relationship with them and because he knows I have a Van Halen fantasy, he said that I would only do it if they supplied me with a bowl of green M&M’s.

[If you don’t know what that has to do with Van Halen – or why was actually a moment of attention-to-detail genius, go here]

Imagine my surprise when a few days later, I got to my desk and found this:

How awesome is that.

No, not the fact you can now get mint chocolate flavoured M&M’s, but that NIKE actually went out and got me them.

Lets be honest, I was hardly going to say no to them – especially when it’s for some of their most important global leaders – so the fact they did this not only shows they’re great people, but its made me want to work even harder for them.

Hang on, they’ve just made me do more for them for the price of a packet of M&M’s.

Evil geniuses.

But seriously, the relationship between client and agency is built on the relationship between the people inside the client and inside the agency … so while we will – and should – always get judged by the work we produce together, these little acts of generosity actually play a part in making that happen because showing your trust, care and respect are as important in delivering great work as provocation, planning and creativity.

24 Comments so far
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they sent it to occupy your gob and shut the fuck up for once. shows they dont fucking know you.

Comment by andy@cynic

i still win. you do fucking know that dont you campbell?

Comment by andy@cynic

Oh yes you do.

Comment by DH

The prize no one wants to ever take off you.

Comment by George

Yes Andy. Yes you do … and you’re welcome to it. It has never been – contrary to [your] belief – a competition.

Comment by Rob

More freebies. What a surprise.

Comment by DH

Is your Van Halen fantasy sex with all the lead singers they’ve had while listening to “jump” in the background? Just asking.

Comment by DH


Comment by Rob

They owe you a bowl.

Comment by John

I’m guessing they knew he would just pour them straight in his mouth. He still holds the cynic “how many smarties can you fit in your mouth” record. I can’t remember how many it was, but it was a scary amount.

Comment by Pete

I can’t remember either, but I do have the distinct memory of having to spit them out – machine gun style – so I wouldn’t choke to death.

Comment by Rob

You always had an ability to get clients to like you. It’s more than just being good at what you do and being charming, so I’d like to know what you think gives you that edge.

The last paragraph is great. It should be pinned to the walls of all clients and agency offices.

By the way, how long did the M&M’s last?

Comment by Pete

I can answer that. Because he consistently demonstrates he is interested in his clients business and is interesting for his clients business. That or it is the birkenstocks.

Comment by George

You worked with him far too long.

Comment by Pete

what the fuck are you talking about. the only reason campbells clients are nice to him is because they feel sorry for the bastard. its an act of fucking charity helping some twat who has been afflicted with shit taste in everything.

Comment by andy@cynic

More like they’re bribes to keep him away from their business.

Comment by DH

How much do I owe you George?

Pete – I have no idea, but one thing I do, do … is make sure I have a regular dialogue with my clients. Not just because the more you talk, the better the relationship [or at least that’s the theory] but it forces me to ensure I’m always on the look out for things that I can talk to them about that could be of interest or value to them [and to us] in the future.

Jesus, I’m almost sounding professional. Almost.

Comment by Rob


Comment by Billy Whizz

However long it took to open the pack.

Comment by DH

You mean rip open the pack.

Comment by Rob

However good you are, you can’t be successful on your own. Good post Robert.

Comment by Lee Hill

Excellent lesson. I hope Mother are reading are this, someone I know from a certain fizzy drinks company reckons that internally they called their valued agency partner Motherfuckers.

Comment by Northern

thats what they used to call campbell even when he wasnt at mother.

Comment by andy@cynic

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