1000 words for 1000 projects. It was recently brought to my attention that we had completed our 1000th successful project, for me, this is a huge milestone.
Not only have we delivered thousands of consulting days, hundreds of training courses, platform upgrades, technical engagements, and managed services retainers, we’ve been able to do it with an incredibly positive relationship with our clients and partners.
Some of our projects are short one-day activities, delivering a training course or providing guidance on a particular activity, others involve major technical implementations spanning months, and yet more are multi-year application management and campaign delivery projects. No matter which it is, the commitment that the team deliver from initial conversations to the final day is probably the element that makes me most proud.
When I look back at the 159 clients (with 2 more recently closed but not started) we’ve worked with over the last ten years, I’m delighted that so many of them have continued to work with us time and again, with many of those organisations closing in on 10 years with us. I wish Purple Square could take all the credit, many of those clients have invested time and energy working alongside the Purple Square team to share their longer-term objectives, enabling us to structure a roadmap that supports and delivers those goals over time.
Out of curiosity I looked at those we’ve engaged with most, whilst I’m not going to name any names, our top 10 clients have been working with us for at least 5 years, and a number of those are almost 8 years into our relationship. What I’m confident of is that we’ve enjoyed working with those clients through the good times and the challenging times.
Since I stepped away from the daily engagement in sales and service delivery, I’m delighted we continue to set realistic and achievable project expectations and deliverables for our clients and partners, starting from our very initial discovery call through to the one hundredth engagement (yes, we have 2 partner relationships with over 100 distinct engagements) and beyond. Our success stems from understanding where challenges in the business might be faced, what the current state of marketing and MarTech really is and then defining the strategic vision for the future marketing capabilities. Our most successful client relationships are exactly that, relationships, ones where we work closely alongside our clients and partners to deliver a roadmap that meets everyone’s objectives.
I remember our very first deal like it was yesterday, having just left IBM, I was visiting family in New Zealand and received a call out of the blue. That call was from Paul Taylor at Transactis to support the deployment of Unica at Betfair (pre Paddy Power acquisition). This project not only kick started Purple Square’s relationship, but cemented our role as “the business partners, business partner” which means we now deliver high quality services to over fifty MSP’s, Global SI’s and vendors. Our approach has always been that the end client belongs to the partner, which has created a level of trust which has enabled us to work and build a strong relationship and friendships amongst many of our partners.
It’s no surprise that most of our work is delivered in the UK/Ireland and Australia/New Zealand, as that’s where our teams are primarily located. What was a slight surprised is that our clients have been in 31 distinct countries, covering every continent, except Antarctica (so far!). We jokingly talk about our “global domination strategy”, we’re well on our way to that already! With the plans we have for the future, my next milestone will be successfully delivering Purple Square services in 100 countries, building meaningful client relationships wherever we can.
Looking forward, the next 1000 projects are likely to be very different to the first 1000, but I am committed to ensuring that our clients and partners continue to see us a valued partner, helping them to identify, structure and deliver their marketing automation strategies and roadmaps. We’ve gone through major transformational changes over the last 3 years, in support of our changing market as well as responding to client needs as they arise.
Our move to support a wider set of marketing platforms (Acoustic, Adobe, Salesforce and Unica) will enable us to continue to support our clients. Our focus on “customer requirement first” and “one-size does not fit all” approach, ensures we provide our best advice, particularly knowing that we are expected to deliver it too. We don’t intend to stop with those platforms. We are already shortlisting additional technologies for us to bring into the fold that extend and enhance our ability to support clients, but our core value of “Strive for Excellence”, means we won’t be adding anything new until we’re confident that we can deliver a truly excellent service that meets their needs.
We’re also continuing to expand our managed services, from Application Management to support client/partner IT teams and to mitigate risk of system issues, to our Campaign Delivery services, enabling clients to focus on marketing improvement, whilst Purple Square deliver operational and BAU excellence. Within the next 12 months this service will reach around the globe, enabling us to support and work with clients, no matter where they are located.
The people I need to acknowledge most are the Purple Square team, both present and past. Without them, their hard work and diligence, Purple Square would never have hit this 1000 project milestone. It is also because of them it’s 1000 successful projects. Whilst not every project has always been smooth sailing, the team have always taken personal responsibility for success and managed through the challenges to deliver happy clients and outcomes. We take great care when bringing people into the team, not only do they have to fit with us, they have to fit with our clients and with our partners. They fit our values and own our reputation as a business.
Purple Square’s successful 1000 projects are just the start, here’s to 1000 more.