One of the reasons I founded Augur is because I believe too many agencies take really talented people and completely waste their time.
They squeeze them dry on hopeless, demanding clients, shackled to ancient inefficient processes and force them to crawl across coals just to be rewarded fairly.
We can do better.
Augur is growing and we are looking for the people who will become new cornerstones of what we build.
We believe the people who make agencies thrive are the hard workers that short-circuit bureaucracy and prioritise ruthlessly to make things that matter happen.
We don’t believe everyone has to be a jack-of-all-trades. We believe there is one core unit of success in this business: getting shit done. If you get that right, you can involve your specialism alongside it, whether that’s data, creating material, delighting clients, or anything else.
Benefits of working at Augur include:
- Unlimited R&R days
- Quarterly bonus scheme
- Company iPhone and MacBook
- Gym contribution
- Mobile working kit
- “virtual share” scheme — the longer you are here, the more you benefit.
Here’s what we’re looking for — but, if these ideas resonate with you, we should talk anyway, regardless of everything below.
This is the primary unit of Augur. Our Strategists make things happen.
If you have a few years of experience and are looking for an environment where everything is designed around delivering strategy, measuring it effectively and iterating on it for clients, this is for you.
- Campaign management and execution
- Campaign iteration: suggesting strategic, creative campaigns that grow the business
- Development of skills inc. attention to detail and refining systems
- Market awareness, including new channels and industry trends
This is a sketch. If you think it sounds interesting, fill in the blanks for us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s have a coffee to improve it together.
Incubation and Acceleration
The focus of our Incubation programme is similar to the startup world: We invite intern-level individuals to pitch us an idea for a project to work on across 3 – 6 months. We will then commission the best ideas, and support them to achieve it, while they learn about how we work.
The project should relate roughly to areas where our interests overlap — for example:
- Delving into Google Analytics, measurement and evaluation in excruciating detail
- Writing every single day, including regular features ideas that will help them learn about our industry
- A video project that gets under the skin of our clients’ challenges and produces an episode a week
They will have to justify this endeavour against their wages, building in a mindset that is aware of the value of work, against the effort put in.
If they thrive in this unique opportunity, we will move their project into Acceleration, providing more resources or learning from it to integrate it into Augur’s processes.
This project is an experiment, and will be driven by the success of the first participants.
To take part, contact email@example.com and tell us how you would use the time.
Like many, I ended up in tech PR through ignorance. When I showed up for my first interview, I didn’t know what PR was (something like advertising?) and I didn’t know what this “press release” was that I had 30 minutes to write.
But something must have gone right, because not long after that I found myself nestled in front of a tidy desk for my first day at work — still with no idea what PR was.
The good news was, with social and digital flooding into the industry, it turned out neither did anyone else. I found myself arriving to an industry half in crisis because they could see the old ways were dying and half in blissful ignorance as the rug slid out from under them.
What I also found was that the world had tilted toward the internet I had grown up on. As a precocious youth with a father who worked in tech, I’d wasted hours on forums and newsgroups, totally immersed in the original social web.
So when introduced to Twitter, I still may have not known what a press release was — but I knew this was a language I could speak.
I quickly became the cliched Account Exec evangelising the latest thing: Google Wave, Google Buzz, Google+ (and even a few non-Google projects) — I was the man taking them all seriously.
I’ve since come to understand this is from the same instinct that makes me sit in the front row at standup shows: I want to try and experience the thing first, by myself, before I let others influence my view.
But as I watched platform after platform collapse, or evolve in disappointing ways, I also learned another significant lesson. From the latest to the ancient, some things that don’t change. Ultimately, whatever the means, people have the same drives, instincts, fears and desires they have had for thousands of years.
And so, a crucial lesson of my career has been: write strategy that optimises for the things that do not change.
This means things like:
- People trust other people, not brands.
- They especially trust people like them.
- They are all trying to achieve something — and if you help them, they may be grateful.
- Some people just want to be heard (think about complaints on social media.)
The principles of marketing aren’t really changed by developments in technology or new channels — It’s just our ability to fulfill them that does.
People became effective at broadcasting messages and not listening to their customer because really there was no simpler scalable route for some time.
PRs became effective at relying on journalists and publications to help spread their story, because there was no other channel.
But that’s just not true anymore.
By focusing on the higher, strategic level, by not saying “we’re going to do a social media strategy now” or, god forbid, “a Twitter (or Mastadon) strategy”, we can achieve more.
So when reviewing your strategy, it’s worth asking: have you found a way to appeal to the human habits that stay the same, or just a way to tweak the tech and algorithms to produce a short term result?
I know which I’d rather work on.
We’ve been writing again, this time for Influence, the official publication of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations.
Cash obviously keeps you alive — but if you don’t really achieve momentum on the other three, you aren’t developing an engine that can sustain value for the long term. In many ways, getting that cash in the bank builds a more resilient system to be able to pursue the more important priorities.
And yet, how often do agencies place bets that threaten these priorities for trivial financial return?
Every time they take on a mediocre new client for a few grand in the forecast, they are leveraging a true cost for the team, brand and potential to attract future clients. You not only frustrate and waste the time of talented people, you undermine their interest in your agency and their job at the same time.
Recently inspired by an example from Ricochet, I put together some helpful tips for how companies can start telling their story pre-Series A.
Like almost everything in early startup days, you have to spend your energy on things that will create a greater than proportionate result. So don’t embark on a complex elaborate editorial strategy if nobody on the team enjoys writing (or is quick at it.)
Perhaps the previous career history of your team means you have access to a lot of people like your target customer? Consider a podcast interview series that takes advantage of those relationships. An iPhone with Anchor, a couple of lavalier mics and you’re away.