Thank you for 2020-2021 — and what’s brewing ahead

Note: The post that you’re about to read below is a slightly edited version of a company-wide memo that I wrote for all staff members at Brew. As an agency, we’ve always strive to be transparent about the way we operate, and to publicly share our vision as an agency.

Hi everyone,

As 2021 is ending, I thought it would be apt for me to put together a memo to address the last two years and provide a little bit of a glimpse into the future as well.

(For reference, here’s 2019’s memo)

Throughout the last two years, there have been numerous significant accomplishments that I’m personally super proud of, which I’m sure some of you would be as well. The list is long, but here are some of them:

  • [Client Name – Edited away] – They are a boutique corporate training provider, probably struggling financially due to COVID. They took a leap of faith on the digital marketing plan that we put together, and fast forward seven months on (i.e., today), their sales team is dealing with an influx of enquiries from their dream clients. It was only recently that I discovered they have been replying slow to us because they’ve been busy tending to prospective customers.
  • [Client Name – Edited away] – They have been known as one of Singapore’s most prestigious English enrichment centres and pre-schools. When the new owner took over the business at the start of 2020, the timing couldn’t have been any worse (!). They spent weeks trying to control the bleed, and at some point, they felt like there was no end in sight. At this stage, I’d like to say… “Thankfully, we came in and saved their business,” but alas… no. The credit is all theirs, but what I am pleased to report is that we’ve generated far more results than they have historically achieved throughout the past 20 years.
  • [Client Name – Edited away] – This one’s my favorite story. It’s a corporate gifting company, doing $20mil/year in revenue (pre-COVID), started by a few founders. They got slapped hard by COVID, losing over 50% of their annual revenues. One of the co-founders even confided in me that he was waking up at 3 am in cold sweat because he didn’t know what he could do to save the business. And as if one would think that was rock bottom, one of the their key cofounders had a health condition that required him to quit the business entirely in the middle of the shitstorm. They took the plunge with us; they chose to start digitally transforming their sales and marketing activities, pivot certain parts of their business, and are absolutely crushing it today to cut a long story short.

There are a lot more stories I’d wish to add here; Mae leading our social media projects, Arielle taking every project up to the next level, Corrine growing ROAS, Jake turning around some of the previously screwed up projects…

Wow!

But one can’t have a good year without some apparent bumps on the road. We made some wrong hires and had some pesky clients slip through our cracks. Nonetheless, I’m still glad that we have corrected most wrongs, which makes me thrilled to see what may come in the next two years.

There are a few things…

LiteBrew is going to be a major disruptive project. In case I haven’t told you about it, LiteBrew is a new subsidiary under Brew that offers SEO, digital advertising, and copywriting services at 40-60% lower than all credible digital agencies out there. We designed the model of LiteBrew to provide the services from an effective and credible digital agency, but have the clients pay the price of a little more than a freelancer.

It’s going to serve what I firmly believe to be an underserved market: micro-SMEs in APAC. We have about some beta customers on it so far, and the traction is moving along just as I’d expect it to be. Growing it is going to be easier said than done, and I know it’s going to be super fun to tackle this desperate problem that over 8 million micro-SMEs face every day.

On top of that, we’ll be restructuring our HR processes, crystallise our service levels to clients, and continuously finding ways to bring in more clients and talents. Please bear with me as we make these changes and find our best footing.

Yet none of these things can happen without stabilising our main Brew ship. We have [Name Redacted away] who will be serving as our Client Service Director, and we’ll be making big changes on the servicing front. In short, throughout the next few months and years, we’ll be evolving as an agency, and you must be prepared to brace these changes with an open heart, regardless of whether you’re working full time or as part of our extended freelance team.

A lot of new things to look forward to, and now finally… let me say this…

They say the last two years have been the “New Normal.”

But here’s what I say… It’s been the “New Better” 🙂

I’m genuinely grateful to be working with all of you, and I look forward to even better times ahead!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everyone!

Marcus

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