Alley Group CEO Nick Lavidge discusses how the agency’s repositioning will help brands “do more with less”

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“It’s the approach brands have always needed, but even more so in today’s environment”

Alley Group unveiled its new repositioning earlier this year, with its core services to help brands’ do more with less’.

Part of the company’s relaunch included its merger with Innovate Online, a Nunn Media-owned digital agency, bringing new capabilities and skills to the talent roster.

The combined Alley Group provides clients a unique suite of capabilities and services beyond media to drive greater campaign efficiencies and ensure each marketing dollar is well-spent in achieving heightened conversion.

Nick Lavidge, Alley Group CEO, spoke to Mediaweek about expanding the agency’s offering, being a precision agency and the outlook for the year ahead.

The next step to the next phase of growth

With the new positioning in play, Lavidge shared that his role and what he oversees has largely stayed the same. However, he highlighted that the offering for people and clients has drastically increased.

“Alley is proud to offer full-funnel services beyond media to maximise customer conversion and retention. We offer expanded SEO capabilities as a result of combining with Innovate Online, and we now have a team of more than 100 marketing experts globally,” he said.

“As an agency, it’s a natural next step for Alley, and it’s personally exciting for me as CEO to lead our next phase of growth,” he added.

Alley’s expanded offering and ‘doing more with less’

Lavidge noted that commercial outcomes have always been a core focus of their campaigns.

“In 2014, I founded Alley on the premise that when brands spend money on marketing, they should make money on marketing,” he said.

Lavidge noted that challenging economic conditions have shifted marketing priorities toward driving efficiencies and maximising customer conversions.

“This is a big change from last year, where Australian brands focused on fast growth at any cost, which unfortunately led to many brands misspending their media investment,” he said.

“Alley’s new offering is about ‘doing more with less’,” he said.

Lavidge explained that their full-funnel suite of services is designed to be precise, minimise waste and ensure every marketing dollar contributes to conversion.

“It’s the approach brands have always needed, but even more so in today’s environment,” he said.

Alley Group’s new position brings two elements for existing and interested clients: a greater breadth of capabilities and more marketing specialists.

“Our capabilities have expanded to cover all stages of customer acquisition and retention campaigns, from profitability planning and mapping the customer journey through to media planning, conversion optimisation and attribution,” he said.

Lavidge explained that the agency now offers expanded Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and diversified digital and traditional media capabilities.

“We believe this comprehensive offering will drive efficiencies for our client campaigns,” he said.

Lavidge noted that structurally, Alley had gained 25 talented staff from Innovate Online, which will provide invaluable expertise to our U.S. and Australian clients.

Meanwhile, Innovate’s Melbourne office has also become Alley’s third global office, following Sydney and Los Angeles.


How Alley’s repositioning will prepare brands to run efficient campaigns

Alley Group’s ‘do more with less’ positioning aims to ensure campaigns are run efficiently, particularly with the expected economic challenges.

Lavidge noted that the agency’s new position would be used with the concept of precision. He said: “When brands serve the right ad to the right person at the right time on the right channel, they achieve their desired result with less media investment. Unfortunately, when campaigns lack precision, media waste and inefficiency occur.”

“We don’t describe Alley as a performance agency but as a precision agency.”

Lavidge explained that their client campaigns are full-funnel and focus on uncovering a 360-degree view of customers, understanding their journey, the media channels they consume and the messages they respond to.

“We then build and optimise personalised creative to ensure the highest rate of conversion. Throughout campaigns, we’re able to map campaign performance to financial outcomes,” he said.

Plans for the U.S. and beyond

While the changes create a unique offering in Australia, there is also continued growth planned for the U.S., where they have a footprint.

Lavidge noted that the U.S. offers the world’s largest market opportunity for Alley’s services.

“We’re proud to have built a considerable U.S. footprint over Alley’s nine years, driving great results for longstanding clients such as NETGEAR,” he said.

Lavidge shared that they recently won briefs for big-name brands like GoTo on the back of this success.

“Our planned U.S. growth will be driven by three key principles: delivering industry-leading work, appointing the industry’s best operators, and proactivity,” he added.

Outlook for Alley Group in the year ahead

Looking ahead, Lavidge revealed that it is an exciting time for Alley as they integrate their combined team of specialists with their unique servicing offering to deliver on their vision of being the global leader for customer acquisition and retention.

“We have an important role in the year ahead in helping businesses do more with less, running spend-efficient campaigns that win and retain customers for long-term financial impact,” Lavidge added.

Top image: Nick Lavidge

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