EyeVero— Virtual, Transnational Marcom Company

By Bruce Firestone | Uncategorized

Dec 31

Quantification of Marketing

(Portions of this article
originally appeared in Ottawa Business Journal, July 2012: https://www.obj.ca/Opinion/Bruce-Firestone-5444)

do you start and grow a virtual marcom company in Ottawa with an international client base that
has no head office, nine full time employees and seven figures in revenues in
seven years? You do it by starting at the top says boyish looking, 40-year old
founder Scott Williams.

2000, Mr. Williams was heading up corporate communications for MBNA Bank in
Ottawa but like most would-be entrepreneurs found working for someone else,
especially a ginormous institution like a Bank, to be too confining so he left
to start his own shop. He planned on becoming a VP of Marketing and
Communications for hire. Like most of the things Scott does, he was methodical
in terms of implementing his plan.

work for large clients, you have to have a portfolio of large clients. If you
don’t have any, you’re not likely to get any. So I knew some guys in IT at a
large North American value added distributor, (Interwork.com). I pitched them
on doing biz dev for them and, after three months, I added more than 20 global
corporations to their client base. 18 of those new clients turned around and
hired us.”

how EyeVero Marketing Communications Group was born. They specialize in
behavioral science-based marketing methodology which means they believe in
measuring everything and understand concepts like turning cost centres into
profit centres and that marketing builds a brand and a brand creates trust and
trust creates the opportunity to make a sale. Mr. Williams sums it up this way,
“Creativity without process is useless. We’re all about science and hard
numbers not emotional based marketing. We architect marcom solutions by first
establishing a brand’s persona and then developing a marcom matrix that suits
the brand. So we’re more like architects who not only need to be great artists,
they also need to create safe structures by following their building code.”

now have 100s of clients and Scott is determined to slow the firm’s growth so
they can continue to deliver consistent results. How does he keep EyeVero on
track? In part he says by surrounding himself with exceptional people.
“Spending 15 minutes with my advisors, guys like Robert Beauchamp (RJR
Innovations), Larry Poirier (Nitro IT), Keith Carter (CEO at StoneShare) and
Rick Koenders (bluArc), is like a year’s worth of business experience.”

background in English Lit at College and University might seem like a strange
fit for EyeVero but like many startups, its genesis was serendipitous. Before
MBNA, Mr. Williams was working for a group of magazines and found he liked
writing and graphic art. He bought a copy of photoshop and illustrator and self
taught. “I can’t draw a stick figure but I seem to have a knack for graphic
design. To me design and utility are one and the same thing—it is one of
EyeVero’s differentiators too.”

Williams works with his best friend since he was a young teen—Colin Elliott,
their CTO and SEO expert. They tie their virtual office together using
basecamp, Skype, bluArc and Dropbox cloud storage. I ask Colin, “What was Scott
like as a kid?”

was a rebel who always did what he wanted.”

sound suspiciously similar to other entrepreneurs I have interviewed over the

back to Mr. Williams, “Does not having a central office make EyeVero less synergistic?”

laughs, “If we had one head office, we would all be sitting there with our
doors closed anyway. That’s the way all our people work. Look, with the
technology we have, I know when everyone is sitting at their desk and can talk
to them in a second, faster than I could get up and go down the hall and drop
in if we were physically in the same space. Our clients expect us to be at the
leading edge of tech so it doesn’t bother them. All our staff like it too. For
me, after working insane hours at the Bank, I didn’t want to be away from my
kids and wife anymore so I have a home office and that’s the way it is.”

EyeVero’s portfolio includes
OpenText Corporation, Hewlett Packard and Symantec. By way of disclosure, they
are the company that re-branded not-for-profit Exploriem.org in 2011, where the
writer is Executive Director. EyeVero donated half of its normal fee back to
the organization in a gesture of social responsibility. EyeVero also created
the cover art for new novel, Quantum Entity | We Are All ONE as well as built
the trilogy’s website brucemfirestone.com for the writer.

EyeVero going to be a 100 person shop? Mr. Williams answers this way, “We’ve
grown each year but really this is a lifestyle business. We’re careful and
strategic about growth. I have no plans to be that next guy on Shark Tank.”

Bruce M. Firestone, Founder, Ottawa Senators; Author, Quantum Entity Trilogy;
Executive Director, Exploriem.org; Broker, Century 21 Explorer Realty;
Entrepreneurship Ambassador, Telfer School of Management, University of Ottawa.

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About the Author

Bruce is an entrepreneur/real estate broker/developer/coach/urban guru/keynote speaker/Sens founder/novelist/columnist/peerless husband/dad.