This is the tenth in a series of interviews with CEOs that were included in a book I wrote in late 2010 called RARE Business. It was a collection of thoughts, ideas and strategies to help businesses ‘build better relationships with their customers and their people’. You can pick up an electronic copy of the book for free by clicking on the SECOND button down in the left hand column or by clicking here.
The interviews were included to supplement my own thoughts and experience and add richness, depth and context. In the interviews, I asked them what they have done to drive their business’ success, customer focus and how they have built their employee and customer engagement.
The last interview in the series was with Grahame Lake of PSP Rare and is featured in Customer retention: Increase customer switching costs by doing something that is low revenue, constant but difficult to replace for the clients.
This time round it is the turn of James Freedman, CEO of Zone, who agreed to talk to us and share some insights about what has made his business so successful in retaining customers, building a great team and driving repeat business and growth.
After launching the Manchester United magazine in 1993, which went on to become the biggest selling sports magazine in the UK, James Freedman, founded Zone in 2000. Zone is a full-service digital agency with more than 10 years’ experience working with major media, entertainment and retail brands. They have worked with a range of brands from 19 Management and The Spice Girls to Channel 5, Channel 4 and Film4 – the first multi-channel subscription channel from a mainstream broadcaster.
The company has grown to around 65 employees over the last 13 years and continues to shake up their industry. Last year they were nominated for Agency of the Year at both the New Media Age and Revolution Awards.
When we asked James about what was his proudest moment in business, he gave us a simple answer: “I’m most proud of the long-term partnerships that we have with clients particularly the 10+ year relationship that we have with Channel 4”.
James also shared with some insights on what he believes they do that has helped them build a truly customer-focused business and team. Here are some of his insights:
This is another great example of an established business that is leading its industry, empowering its team and delivering value for its customers.
Can you learn anything from their approach?
Note: I write these posts because I am passionate about great service and helping companies get more value and growth out of the customer relationships they already have. If you’d like to find out more about how I do that then get in touch here. Alternatively, sign up for my monthly newsletter here.
Thank you to pierofix for the image.