“Extraordinary” is the word Paul Sprokkreeff, CEO of Australian digital agency Web Profits, uses to describe being approached by longstanding client Bellamy’s Organic to come along and enter Asia alongside the client.
“They engaged with us, and said they wanted us to replicate the same success we’d had with them in Australia in Southeast Asia. But to do that, we needed to have a presence, preferably in Singapore,” he tells Campaign Asia-Pacific.
It is certainly one of the more remarkable stories in today’s digital communications and marketing world: that Bellamy’s asked Web Profits to move with them into Asia, rather than find a local agency—as almost every company does.
Sprokkreeff says Web Profits has operated in Asia for some time and was strongly considering putting feet on the ground.
“Southeast Asia such a major hub for the global economy, but surprisingly a lot of its digital marketing is currently not as good as it can be,” he says. “We saw a twofold opportunity: first by way of mass and second by way of cut through. That is, a lot of companies want and need our services.”
But to have a major client make such a request was certainly a shot in the arm for Web Profits, Sprokkreeff says. “They went a step further and helped us set up our Singapore office. It wasn’t just talk; they were willing to invest in us because they said they had a need for a digital partner they were comfortable working with in Southeast Asia."
“To have a client go beyond words or a thank you basket and say ‘We’d like to take this a whole step further, we’d like to help you move over, to help us’, it did take me aback, in the nicest possible way. I’m very grateful to Bellamy’s for the opportunity.”
Ben Lovitt, marketing manager at Bellamy’s, tells Campaign Asia-Pacific the decision was straightforward.
“While we looked at a number of good agencies in the region, it was our existing relationship with Web Profits and their understanding and knowledge of our business that made them the ideal choice to partner with,” he explains.
“To that end we asked if they would consider opening an office to support us in Singapore as they have a deep understanding of our business culture and brand voice, both critical to driving a successful digital strategy.”
Sprokkreeff says Web Profits’ success for Bellamy’s lies in the agencies deep understanding of digital marketing, and its agility in being able to optimise, iterate and deliver engaging campaigns quickly and effectively.
“We do all the regular stuff, but also have a much more comprehensive digital service offering, online marketing approach, where clients pay us capped fees and we include all those services within that fee.”
The agreement with Bellamy’s is for two years, with the option to extend. Since moving to Singapore just a few months ago, Web Profits has already won two new local clients.
Sprokkreeff is optimistic that Web Profits can grow in Asia, given its offering, and says the Bellamy’s deal is proof that the agency’s model is what brands want.
“To drive the best results in digital marketing, we have to fully collaborate with our clients. It is this ‘full immersion’ approach,” he says. “The more we collaborate, the greater the synergies, and the more you come up with great ideas and new strategies.”