At a point, we came to find our solid proposition, and it’s only in the last two years that we grew our one office to seven international offices. Next month, we’ll open two more offices in Stockholm and Mexico City to connect even more businesses with their potential consumers.
6 lessons from one of Europe’s fastest-growing start-ups
Today, Social Blue is six years old. We started as a small start-up in a shared office. Back then, we spent the majority of our time with continuous learning from both the mistakes we made and successes we had.
I have always encouraged my team to think big, act fast, and be decisive.
Many strategic decisions that Social Blue made were a reflection of these traits. I’m grateful that many colleagues stay and continue to join me in realising Social Blue’s ambition to become the number one lead generation agency in the world, but I’m also curious to hear from my colleagues about what they have learned from being a part of this exciting (and at times) challenging journey. In the run-up of our 6th anniversary, I went to have a conversation with some of my colleagues. Here are their lessons.
Take the risk to do something new
”I think the main thing that contributes to our rapid growth is the first-mover advantage. As an agency that focuses solely on Facebook, we operate within a niche that had little competition. As Facebook increased its market share and became a premier advertising platform, we were positioned to offer a better product than agencies that focused on a marketing mix. We were able to better take advantage of the opportunities of the Facebook platform to achieve high-quality leads at a relatively low cost-per-lead for our partners, which, in combination with our performance-based business model, gave us a strong competitive advantage.”
– Bram Delver, Head of Copywriting
Create a culture of "Yes!"
”Just do it! As you yourself always told me Tim: make decisions and try things out. I have come to find that it’s really the path to growth and success. Not everything will work, but Social Blue gives you that freedom to work like it’s essentially your own business. Making the wrong decision is better than making no decision at all.”
– Leigh Gough, Head of Business North America
Build your wings on the way down
”Ray Bradbury once said, “Living at risk is jumping off the cliff and building your wings on the way down.” I think it’s the same with a scale-up company, where decisions need to be taken quickly in order to grow and once implementing them, the framework is built around them, whereas in big companies it’s often the other way around.”
– Martina Krauss, Legal Counsel
Know when it’s time to change
”Plan and manage. We first started with a ’Just Do It’ mentality that brought us quick and good results to build on, but we now have to operate more structurally and professionally to keep track of much bigger projects.”
– Kevin Bruggink, Head of Innovation
Everything can be solved by the right team of people
”There is always a solution to a challenge if we are all on the same page. Social Blue shows that there can be short lines of communication, even if it’s a company with 9 offices worldwide.”
– Mina Sheykholeslami, Business Development Manager DACH
Foster strong relationships
”I have been lucky enough to have created strong relationships with team members and clients alike. Some that I believe could last a lifetime. A chance to strengthen many of these relationships was a work trip to New Zealand (my home country) to meet clients and prospects alike. Having travelled with another colleague from the Campaign Management team, we were able to learn from each other, strengthen meeting quality (with the knowledge of two teams) and I was also able to introduce my culture a little more.”
– Haydon Mark, Business Development Manager ANZ
The past six years have been a tremendous journey. It’s hard to believe that only six years ago, we were searching for our first clients.
From time to time, we need to take a moment to look back and appreciate how far we’ve come. It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day challenges of scaling up a company with offices across the globe. Our ambitions are far greater than where we are today and we’ll continue to work hard to grow, but we can be exceptionally proud of what we’ve already achieved. I know I am. I’m surrounded by people who have impressed me with their growth, who I’ve watched take on challenges and succeed. I’m glad that today I can share with you some of their lessons, so you can learn from them as I do each day.
Tim Roemer, CEO and founder of Social Blue.
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