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Agrimarketing : May 2009
38 Agency Leaders Update:32 Feature Story 5/13/09 11:34 AM Page 42 AGENCY LEADERS/continued frompage 40 is ever easy. There’s always something unexpected over every horizon —and that “something” is usually closely tied to your bottomline. Agri-marketing is no different.At PaulsenMarketing, the current economic recession has forced every one of our clients to carefully evaluate their business plans,with a critical eye on marketing efficiency and effectiveness. After 58 years in the business, Guse we’re focused on doingwhatwe’ve always done…never stop learning, and approach every day as ifwe are a young, ambitious start-up. Get Your News on the Go! Now you can get news and weather for agri-marketers while you are on the go on your favorite wireless mobile device. Type in www.AgriMarketingMobile.com on your wireless device. With thismindset,we spent the last yearworking hard to give our clients a competitive edgewith their Internet presence.While everything is changing fast in the onlineworld, socialmedia is exploding onto the scene. Twitter, blogs, podcasts, Facebook: If it’s an emergingway to communicate,we’re paying attention and asking howit can help our ag clients nowand in the future. We’ve also hired and partnered with some of the best and brightest in the onlineworld to create leadingedge digital solutions for clients that go beyondmereWeb sites to become smarter business tools that sell faster and streamline productivity. Of course it’s not all about bigger, faster, better. It’s also about getting back to basics. Nowmore than ever, businesses must out-think rather than outspend the competition. Our clients want a seamless integrated program thatmarries strategy, research, creative,media placement, public relations, interactive, tradeshows and everything else. Not new, to be sure. Today clients require even greater flexibility. For example, nowwe’re creatingmore six-month or even quarterlymarketing plans. The shorter planning cycles allowmore flexibility and quick response to changing conditions in a volatile agriculturalmarketplace. Our challenge is to keep brands cohesive during cycle transitions. In spite of the challengeswe face, it’s a great time to be in agri-marketing. The long-termoutlook for agriculture is bright and full of opportunity for producers and the agribusinesses serving their needs— as long aswe all never stop learning! RHEA&KAISERMARKETING COMMUNICATIONS Chicago, IL www.rkconnect.com by Steve Rhea, President/CEO Visit the AgriMarketing Mobile FAQs page for questions about mobile application functionality. This service is free to agri-marketers. 42 Agri Marketing s May 2009 Rhea + Kaiser celebrates 31 years this month. We’re very proud of this accomplishment. I amproud that in thisworld of holding companies and agency consolidationwe remain an independent agency that isworking forworld class clients. Van Kaiser and I founded Rhea + Kaiser in 1978. Less than two years later, in 1980, our economy entered at tough downturn that ismuch like the recession thatwe are presently experiencing. Thatwas a tough period in agriculture and in the U.S. economy, but this early experience gave us the knowledge thatwe need to face today’s tough economy. I feel in general, agriculture is handling this recession better than most other sectors. Fromour beginnings as a six-person office,we are nowamore than 100-person firm with integrated capabilities that include advertising, PR, interactive, sales promotion, brand strategy and strategic consulting. Today,with the leverage gained by joining Worldwide Partners Inc (WPI), a partnership of 95 independent agencies in 55 countries,we areworking with agency partners fromTokyo to Dubai providing clientswith serviceswe never dreamed about 30 years ago. Thanks to our partnership,we nowcanmake strategic plans come to life anywhere in the world for our clients. One change that I think is signifi- Rhea cant is the diversity in the backgrounds of the peoplewe are hiring. Traditionallywe only hired account and creative peoplewith ag backgrounds.Nowwe hire peoplewith ag backgrounds and talented individualswho have never been on a farm. The peoplewe hire are bright, inquisitive and collaborative. They ask questions. They think first about what the brandmeans to the customer before they askwhat the product does. We find thatwe are selling think- ing, plain and simple.We find that our basic tenets of curiosity, imagination, discipline, passion and drive are the basic traits that unite our people. These are simplewords but they arewhat differentiate R+K. They are at the core of R+K DNAand our Uncommon Sensewhich enable us to see theworld differently and provide extra value to our clients. AM
May 2009 Supplement