Yorkshire focus: What is the current atmosphere amongst the region's advertising, digital and PR agencies?
As part of The Drum’s series of UK regional reviews, we caught up with those working across Yorkshire’s creative marketing industries – Thompson Brand Partners, Cherry Tiger, Enjoy Digital, We Are and INK Digital Agency – to gauge the mood of the industry in Yorkshire.Nick Ramshaw, MD, Thompson Brand PartnersMixed. Agencies that have adapted to the ‘new rules’ over the last few years are having to work harder than ever, but are still here and in some cases managing to grow. They know how to add value to client relationships and proactively sell in solutions that generate tangible returns. There are some great success stories, such as MadeByPi working with Disney Pixar; Elmwood, WPA and ourselves winning DBA Effectiveness awards; Finn working with Glenfiddich; Numiko with Channel 4 and the BBC; and Stickyeyes being voted No1 search agency in the UK. The region punches above its weight, and Leeds continues to be its economic hub and will be even more so in 2013, with the opening of the Trinity shopping centre, the new arena, major investments in the airport and commitments to transport and infrastructure projects. This and its central location enables agencies to service clients throughout the UK and beyond, from a reasonable cost base whilst offering staff an outstanding quality of life.Mike Ashton, director, Cherry TigerCautious optimism. Projects and initiatives that clients have been keeping mothballed for the last couple of years are being taken out and dusted down. Things are moving in the right direction, albeit cautiously and with an air of realism. Kristal Ireland, strategy director, Enjoy DigitalOverall very positive. We’ve had a few knocks over the last 12-18 months with some well-known agencies sadly not making it through the recession, but overall Yorkshire has seen some fantastic growth and some key acquisitions made. Yorkshire agencies are certainly holding their own in the industry awards stakes this year, proving that regional agencies can compete at a national level and produce some brilliant work that is well respected by its industry peers.Andy Weir, MD, We AreTimes are still tough, but the industry in Yorkshire is resilient as ever and there is certainly a sense of optimism amongst our peers. We’ve experienced fantastic growth over the last 12 months here at We Are. This is reflected in the fact that we have been named as an RAR Top 100 agency this year for the first time. Whilst this may be bucking the trend it’s been a real challenge to get there and we’re very positive about what the future holds.Tony Pye, head of digital development, INK Digital AgencyAs we all know, the last couple of years have been tough for a lot of companies across a variety of industries. However, within the digital arena, it’s an exciting time, everyone is full of creative, innovative and fresh ideas. There’s also a sense of community as collaboration between agencies is on the rise; which again brings another exciting dimension to the creative solutions we’re able to offer our clients.This question was asked as part of a wider feature on Yorkshire in the 23 November issue of The Drum.
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