TE&M is a meeting of minds

The Enthusiasts and Momentum have become a collaborative force in brand strategy, creativity and media execution. Here, Martin Yeoman, Strategy Partner at creative agency The Enthusiasts, and Natalia Taylor, founder
and Managing Director of media indie Momentum, share how their partnership came to be and what it means for their clients. 

So how did TE&M come about?

Martin Yeoman: Having long-standing careers in the local advertising industry, we’ve bumped into and worked with each other in different capacities over the years.

We’ve partnered on numerous client projects and realised there was something special about our complementary skill sets, shared values as local indies and natural synergy in our approaches to client work.

Initial collaborations yielded great results for clients, which drove us to develop a collaborative partnership we’re calling TE&M.

We remain two independent businesses but join forces in partnership when required to leverage our combined expertise to offer clients a full-service creative and media offering.

How do you see the cultural alignment between the two agencies playing a role in TE&M’s success?

Yeoman: The bond between The Enthusiasts and Momentum goes beyond business – it’s all about our shared culture.

We both value openness, genuineness and putting clients at the heart of everything, and this common ground makes communication a breeze, effortlessly builds trust and sparks collaboration that’s truly seamless.

Our similar work cultures create a unified approach, ensuring a consistent and exceptional experience for our clients.

What does each agency bring to the table, and how do you see those strengths playing off each other?

Natalia Taylor: The Enthusiasts excel in brand strategy, creative ideation and creative execution, while Momentum specialises in channel-agnostic media strategy, digital marketing, technology and analytics.

Our strengths naturally complement each other, and both agency business models prioritise client access to senior industry talent daily.

This enables us to provide comprehensive, full-service campaign solutions backed by data-driven insights, resulting in campaigns that captivate audiences and drive tangible business results for clients.

How do you plan to use your combined expertise and resources to spark innovation and creativity?

Taylor: We’re determined to cultivate a culture of innovation and creativity that breaks free from the constraints of traditional marketing.

Utilising human and data-driven insights to fuel our creative and media strategies, we’ll also embrace the latest technology to craft campaigns that not only deeply connect with audiences but also deliver tangible ROI for our clients.

It’s also as simple as spending time together. So much happens in the conversations between meetings, so having that regular time together is often where the magic happens.

Ideally, you want media and creative to develop in tandem, and doing that successfully means working together.

Yeoman: This is how it used to be when media and creative were one business. In the process of ‘unbundling’, we lost this – to the detriment of clients.

So often these days, it’s a media agency and a creative agency who have no pre-existing relationship, no aligned view and no shared way of working – and that has an impact on the work.

How do you think this partnership will benefit your existing clients, and what about the potential for
other businesses out there?

Taylor: Our partnership brings added value to our existing clients by granting them access to a wider array of services and expertise.

From comprehensive, channel-agnostic media strategies to captivating creative, our clients can seamlessly blend all facets of their marketing endeavours with confidence and ease.

For other businesses using multiple agency partners with a less holistic approach and often siloed thinking and execution, our collaboration offers a compelling alternative, presenting a collaborative and agile way of working that can be tailored to their unique needs and business challenges.

Yeoman: The onus is on us to deliver a complete solution to our clients, rather than a client trying to orchestrate multiple parties working together.

How do collaborations like TE&M cater to local businesses’ unique needs and hurdles?

Yeoman: Partnerships like TE&M, born from two independent, New Zealand-owned businesses, speak directly to the heart of Kiwi enterprises’ needs.

Our collaboration offers an agile, personalised and locally focused approach that resonates with the unique challenges and aspirations of businesses in New Zealand. 

Unlike larger agencies that might prioritise scale over customisation, our joint effort enables us to deeply comprehend the nuances of the local market and craft strategies that truly resonate.

Our unwavering commitment to transparency ensures our clients have full insight into the team and processes driving their campaigns, fostering a relationship built on trust and mutual accountability.

Taylor: From a media perspective, we take immense pride in having our team of digital specialists manage all digital work in-house, rather than outsourcing offshore or to external digital suppliers.

Yeoman: The reality is that every marketing dollar is under pressure at the moment. Client organisations
are operating under greater efficiency and need to know that every cent is working as hard as it can.

Often, there’s duplication in the roles of media and creative, and by bringing them together, there are opportunities to streamline. This has cost savings and also speeds things up.

Ultimately, we can do more with less – faster.

Taylor: Keeping a close eye on where a client’s investment goes has never been more crucial.

We’re passionate about striking the perfect balance of creative, media and managing costs, ensuring every dollar sweats and ultimately benefits our clients’ bottom line.

Do you have any specific clients you believe will thrive from this collaboration?

Yeoman: We often hear from clients who say they feel as if they get passed around bigger agencies as agency staff come and go. Being business owners who are hands-on, we’re not going anywhere.

That means we build a relationship and really get to understand clients’ businesses and the nuances of their brands and consumers. 

Whereas global agencies excel at servicing large, multinational clients, the personalised attention and tailored solutions that smaller enterprises require can sometimes get lost in their scale.

In contrast, partnerships like ours offer a more intimate and attentive approach, ensuring that each client, regardless of size, receives the focused support and innovative solutions they deserve.

How can you offer a more streamlined experience for clients juggling multiple or large agency partners?

Taylor: Working together creates a more streamlined experience for our clients, freeing them from the complexities and inefficiencies of having multiple agency partners.

Even related to simple things like communication and day-to-day management, we do a lot of communicating and organising in the background, so the client doesn’t have to manage multiple parties. TE&M should feel like one entity.

There are also benefits of a media and brand strategist working together – they bounce off each other, bringing different skills and perspectives, and arriving at a better solution more quickly.

So there are greater efficiencies in the day-to-day, and also greater effectiveness in bringing the skill sets together.

How do you envision TE&M evolving?

Taylor: Looking ahead, our vision includes expanding our services to embrace emerging technologies and media channels, delving deeper into understanding consumer behaviour through advanced analytics, and strengthening our role as trusted advisors and partners to our clients.

Our ultimate aim is to foster long-term growth and success for our clients, all while staying rooted in our shared values of transparency, creativity and excellence. 

Yeoman: Our goal is simple – to do high-quality work that truly delivers success for our clients; to work in a way that promotes partnership, fun and excellence; and to have faith that more work will come because of that.

We’re only as good as our last project – and our clients are our biggest supporters and advocates. 

This was first published in the March/April 2024 issue

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