We’ve been exploring people, culture and tech here in Australia on our daily blog. If you’re looking for your next dream role with 100+ of Australia’s top companies doing amazing things in tech, check out The Martec.
(Left: Joel Norton, CEO of Kalido. Right: James Bennett JBA CEO &Founder)
Last May, IVE’s Kalido acquired customer analytics and marketing automation agency JBA.
The move builds on Kalido’s creative and digital capabilities, enabling the agency to offer a deeper CX experience. With a focus on multi-channel marketing driven by data insights, brands are showing their support. In the past year, Kalido’s brought on high-profile clients such as Foxtel, Coca Cola, AXA and Cotton On to name a few. We chat to Joel Norton , CEO of Kalido on the exciting times ahead – and the kind of culture that’s popped up post-acquisition.
Let’s first talk a bit about your experience in the marketing and digital space. How has the industry evolved in recent years?
The principles and theories of marketing haven’t really changed. But obviously, now, new tech platforms emerge every week, giving us opportunities to execute things a lot faster and easier. So it’s pretty exciting from that point of view. What’s also changing is that more and more brands are starting to get serious about investing in this space. They want their campaign executions to be based on data insights and great technology solutions. I’m driven by results. So it excites me to have data-based activity that is tangible and meaningful.
You’ve had some big brands come on board post acquisition. What does this mean for Kalido – and what lies ahead?
We were originally focused on creativity. While that’s still an important part of our positioning, we’ve flipped it around so our fundamental ‘what we do’ is as a customer-experience agency. This means analytics and marketing automation with best-in-class technology partners, website and mobile platform development and creative content. A couple of other agencies position themselves as CX based, but they are what we used to be – effectively creative campaign-based agencies with a bit of technology tacked on the side. So our offering has changed over the last 12 months, and we’ll continue to build and enhance that.
How has that kind of shift affected your work culture?
We’re constantly trying to find the balance between bringing the different teams together while letting them work independently operationally. Cultural integration is an ongoing challenge because, on paper, people might have similar roles and skills, but they prefer doing different types of work. So we need to consider that. Our move towards the tech space also means we have more people on the team who are introverts, what you’d call a bit shy. One of the ways we’re trying to bring our teams together is by doing weekly calls between our different locations and rotating the Chair role. This gives everyone a sense of what other teams are doing.
What do you look for when you’re hiring?
It is hard to try and work out how someone can fit in the team because we need to weigh up the tech with the soft skills. What’s important for us is that people are curious because asking questions is how we add value to our clients. So is passion and collaboration, which is about being focused on delivering genuine outcomes for our clients, and working together to achieve them.
Where do you see the growth playing out for Kalido this year?
Asia is going full steam ahead. In the next month, we’ll have four staff in Singapore and two in Hong Kong, and we expect to add more in the next few months. It’s a similar story in Australia where we expect to grow the marketing automation team in the next six months, as well as our website development team. Our growth across the board is being driven by our amazing ability to customise and personalise the customer journey.