It’s not easy being new at a business. Somehow you feel as if you’ve just jumped on a train already moving at 60mph without knowledge of neither the origin nor the destination. However, when you join a new business that is exploding with new clients, new technology and new opportunities, instead of spending time combing through the work decks and/or asking fellow employees who’ve been there longer than you, sometimes it’s just easier to come out and ask. And who better to get everything you need to know about the company including the real vision that drives the organisation?
From the pioneers that started it of course… the Managing Directors.
Being new, interviewing one Managing Director can be reasonably daunting. However, interviewing both Managing Directors at the same time is just downright frightening. Nonetheless, I took on the challenge…
According to one of the two heads that built the machine that is Snack Media, Managing Direction Niall Coen, the vision of the company has evolved but not so much changed from the initial epiphany.
“The vision when we first started was to be a new media company, experiment in the digital space and to own an area within sport. It was originally based on podcasting which was the vehicle to do just that” he said.
“But you could argue that actually the core vision hasn’t changed that much, we’re still experimenting and creating new media but we’ve tried a lot of different things along the way. I think we’re on the same path as we always were, we’re just a bit clearer about what our competitive advantage is and where we want to take the business”.
Initially, jumping aboard the Snack train, there seemed to be many balls in the air in every direction, juggled by outstretched hands while holding on to the carriage. On closer look, Snack Media is a finely balanced and self-tuning mechanism that not only learns from each rotation but picks up new cogs in its apparatus as it turns.
From real-time engagement with sports fans at sports stadiums to developing their own advertising network to managing small, medium and extremely large blogs, here at Snack Media, we’re really doing it all. According to Snack Media’s other Managing Director Sarah Groarke, the impressive feature is the way in which we package our products and services.
“We’re quite unique because we’re not just an ad network; we have our own websites as well… We can take a campaign and use our network to amplify a brands’ messages or visa versa, for example; we have used our expertise in social media and live content to deliver content and campaigns for Ford in the Champions League but then into auto industry events” she said.
“For our blog network partners we fill lots of little holes and gaps in knowledge and the cumulative effect of us filling all those little holes for our bloggers around hosting, creating content, providing licensed photography and teaching them how to get better with social media, is that they receive a great service that delivers more than just ads” Niall Coen chimes in.
Growth is certainly on the Managing Directors’ minds and like every efficient machine; Niall Coen said that Snack Media is looking to evolve which would be an exciting prospect to hear for any employee apart of a fast growing organisation.
“We’re definitely looking to expand our customer base and at the same time enhance the services that we provide. Real time content is a hot topic at the moment but the market changes fast and it won’t be the same in 6 months’ time. Real time content will mean something slightly different or clients will have a slightly different perspective and I can see Snack Media evolving our services to adapt to those needs. I’m really interested in delivering the right content at the right time, the next stage is to deliver it on the correct platform and vary the message depending on your location” he said.
The truth is that the work we’re doing here at Snack is exciting and it is growing exponentially. Niall suggests that getting like-minded individuals to work in projects they’re passionate about is driving the success of the business.
“Our work with Europcar and Arsenal is genuinely quite ground-breaking work, from winning the deal to getting them to commit to brand “new rights” with Arsenal and producing live content from an official source in an unofficial way thus creating authenticity. There is more to come from the Europcar client and we are really looking forward to year two of the partnership. I often think cream rises to the top so the better the work we produce, the more people wanting us to work with them, it’s a snow ball effect and we are seeing the benefits of this now”.
The origin is certainly an interesting one. From Sarah Groarke’s kitchen, Snack Media has come an extremely long way to become one of Britain’s fast growing media companies. And while it feels like I’ve joined a train already part way through the journey, sitting down and really getting to the heart of the vision of Snack Media with the Managing Directors tells me that the part of the journey I’ve joined is just the beginning. And not only will I play an integral role of the journey but be an important cog in determining the destination