Specialist marketing agency wins award for blue-chip international trade.
It is easy to understand why Outside The Box (OTB Agency) have won a Queen’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade, because they are a full-service specialist creative marketing agency that produces genuinely outstanding communications that continually raise the bar for their clients.
Headquartered in Leeds, just a six-run hit from the Emerald Headingly Stadium, the thread that runs through the 19-strong team is their values of fun, creativity, passion and expertise with an unwavering focus on delivery which has resulted in a 560 per cent international sales growth over the last three years alone.
However, there is more to OTB’s success story than this statistic reveals. This is a creative marketing agency that serves large blue-chip clients as well as those small and perfectly formed, at home and abroad, but it is their innovative work for some of the best known financial organisations in the world that has marked them out and evidences any claim of specialism.
Mark Davies, chairman, said: “Our sales growth overseas is just a by-product of what we produce. We have only grown by that amount because what we produce is very, very good. It’s very complex and technical, creative and its better than the competition.”
Jo Waddington, managing partner, said: “We’ve won this award for the export of our services that we provide in the financial service sector overseas in regions such as CEMEA, Asia Pacific and the US. We deliver strategies and communications tools that help our clients engage confidently with their customers and increase the take up of their new products.”
Among OTB’s current and recent UK-based clients are the Methodist Homes for the Aged (MHA), National Grid, Shearings Holidays, Leeds Building Society, English Provender Company and West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service.
When times are hard, very often the first casualty in a business’s budget is marketing, so perhaps it’s a testament to OTB’s approach that no client has yet been lost, because of the Coronavirus crisis.
Mark added: “We are living in unprecedented, and for many, dark times. Fortunately, we haven’t lost any clients, although some projects have been pushed into Q4. Other than more home-working, it’s business as usual, because we embraced new technology like Zoom a number of years ago, so our overseas clients are used to this approach.
“We had a strategy to grow our international work and realised we had to invest to enable that to happen. The emphasis of some of our work has slightly changed though, because we are now putting packages together for clients to bounce out of this situation rather than just to help them survive it.”
OTB’s excitement at winning this prestigious award is palpable and will not only be an honour for the company but also for the city of Leeds. Jo said: “We believe that the Queen’s Award is a great fit with our core values. It’s the biggest award that any company can win and is a great endorsement and accreditation that will help us win new business, attract future team members and help to differentiate us from other agencies. Leeds is a huge hub for digital marketing and our success also reflects the wider city’s brilliant credentials.”