Why should I believe you? The way we answer that question is called social proof: reviews, testimonials, awards, rankings, and other forms of validation that show you can be trusted. But all this hard-earned validation doesn't do us any good if we keep it hidden. Here are four principles to keep in mind as you're building and deploying your proof.
As I’ve spoken to friends that have also run marketing agencies and development shops, or even law firms and lobbying groups, there is one tempting idea that everybody considers at some point in their journey: doing work for equity. Instead of charging a client $5,000 or $500,000, what if you did the work for “free” as an investment and get a pile of stock in return?
When we first started our agency, we were a couple of broke 22-year-old guys trying to figure it out and save every penny. If we met with a client outside their office, we’d go to Starbucks or the local coffee shop around the corner, and pay our $10 “rent” for a couple drinks and a convenient table. That was a bad move.
In the summer of 2020, New York was facing a series of overlapping crises. There were the big issues that defined the whole year for the whole nation, the pandemic and BLM protests, but more locally we were facing a crisis of identity. Midtown Manhattan skyscrapers sat empty. Broadway and Museum Mile were silent. In sharp contrast, our parks were packed with people... and their garbage.
If you watch Mad Men, there’s a scene in the second episode where Harry Crane, one of the copywriters, is giving the new girl, Peggy Olson, a tour of the office. When he comes to describe the art department, he says they put them “downstairs… far enough away from the elevators so we can't sneak out.” Now, we’re all in the art department.