Allison+Partners announced the launch of Headstand, an integrated communications consultancy. Born from the stellar client service and award-winning work that has fueled Allison+Partners’ 18 years of growth, Headstand was created to alleviate potential conflicts and to meet the demand for the way today’s clients want to partner with agencies. Headstand will focus on operating as an extension of client teams, providing greater flexibility within the traditional scope of work and offering custom approaches to client challenges.
Operating in stealth mode for the past six months and already working with clients including SAP North America, NerdWallet, SideChef, Trov and Xiaomi, Headstand is positioned to handle both Allison+Partners’ conflict accounts, ranging from startups to global enterprises, as well as its own book of business.
Headstand launches with a recognition that white space exists in the market for an agency solution that operates more like a consultancy than a traditional “agency,” and that aligns with clients’ internal structures more effectively. Too many organizations are frustrated with templated approaches to account management and client service, and thus often struggle to see the value in traditional marketing services.
Further, according to the Communications Bellwether Survey conducted by PRWeek and Boston University, there’s a need for better integration between communications programs leveraging paid, earned, owned and shared channels and larger business objectives. Agencies that can identify and deliver on client goals by offering customized and collaborative approaches to integrated marketing will be best positioned to solve today’s distinct marketing challenges and demonstrate ROI.
“There’s a relentless collision between marketing services and technology taking place, at an accelerating pace. This is creating tremendous opportunities to be at the forefront of change,” said Andy Hardie-Brown, Allison+Partners co-founder/global vice chairman. “Agencies tend to be big and unwieldy or smaller and nimble. Headstand can carve out a niche by offering a full-service consultancy model that is both agile and scalable.”
Equally at home crafting campaign strategies and executing day-to-day tactics, Headstand will emphasize tailored offerings for clients instead of relying on templated approaches to communications problems. Headstand will also employ agile methodology in its approach to client service, avoiding bottlenecks and paving the way for more nimble and expedient campaign development and execution.
Headstand will be led by 12-year Allison+Partners veteran, Zach Colvin, who assumes the role of president and will oversee the firm’s business development and organic growth efforts. While at Allison+Partners, Zach was a partner responsible for the agency’s new business initiatives in North America, leading the agency’s three California offices, managing the media team and building client campaigns. With a focus on technology, consumer and healthcare, Zach developed integrated strategies and directed initiatives for some of the agency’s premier clients.
Zach will be joined by Stacey Johnes as general manager, responsible for supporting agency operations including financial oversight, staffing and brand development. For clients, her focus is on developing communications campaigns that help foster a deeper brand connection with consumers though an integrated marketing approach. Prior to Headstand, Johnes was senior vice president, client service at Allison+Partners working with consumer brands across multiple industries.
“Brands, and CMOs in particular, are under more pressure than ever to make their organization stand out and justify where they spend their marketing dollars,” said Colvin. “With most organizations’ marketing functions increasingly interconnected with other lines of business, enterprises are seeking communications partners that can effectively respond to this reality and deliver. This is where Headstand can step in, as we turn the agency model on its head in order to provide services and results that match client needs.”
Headstand launches with a full spectrum of integrated marketing services including creative campaign development and execution, brand identity and messaging development, content development, influencer relations, media relations, social engagement and digital programs. The leadership team has extensive global agency background and experience in a variety of industries, including consumer tech, B2B tech, CPG, health & wellness, food & beverage, travel and hospitality. Headstand will be announcing custom offerings and services in the coming months.
“Working with Headstand has been an awesome experience,” said Keely Spillane, Head of Commuincations at NerdWallet. “They take the time to understand our business, provide invaluable counsel and have secured tremendous media results. We’re really fortunate to partner with this extended team of ‘Nerds’!”
“Choosing Headstand to be our agency of record was an easy choice. They offered an incredibly insightful approach to solving our business and marketing challenges. As a startup in an emerging space, designing a thorough and bespoke strategy was vital,” said Chris Pappas, director, global public relations and communications for Trov. “Headstand is an extension of my in-house team. Close involvement from senior leadership and bold creative thinking are driving impactful work and delivering results.”
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