The Backroom Agency return to share their advice on marketing your business to achieve success even in tougher times – and choosing the right people to help you. unLTD’s Rachel Measures spoke to Andrew Brown, co-founder of Backroom, to learn more.

Q&A: The domino effect – and how to achieve it

What have the last couple of years been like for the Backroom Agency?

In 2021, we celebrated our fifth year in business which felt like a huge achievement, against the backdrop of everything else going on in the world.

Our setup meant we were able to adapt quickly to working from home, right from the start of the lockdown. Not having additional staff meant our overheads stayed low enough for us to come through the pandemic relatively unscathed. Our strategy of partnering with the best in the business thankfully seemed to pay off.

As costs continue to rise, many companies are looking closely at their budgets. Where would you recommend they put their marketing spend for maximum impact?

Unfortunately, when it comes to marketing your business, there is no magic bullet. No one activity that will lead to guaranteed success. You often see business coaches and entrepreneurs on the internet telling you that the only thing you need to focus on is SEO, or Facebook ads. This is absolutely not the case. The old adage is true – you should never put all your eggs in one basket, and likewise, you should never put all your marketing efforts into just one channel.

Effective marketing comes from working really hard at lots of things. Social media, brand, advertising, SEO, PR, events, paid search…the list goes on.

It sounds daunting, but when you have all of those elements working in tandem, you create momentum – a ‘domino effect’ if you like, which in turn leads to business success.

Our region is home to a lot of SMEs who are perhaps not big enough to have an in-house marketing team. What’s your advice for them?

The big brands and corporates have whole teams of people working behind the scenes, crafting messages, planning campaigns and paying attention to every detail. Those teams are like the ‘backroom’ – the unseen engine behind the marketing magic.

But here’s the thing we always tell our clients, regardless of size.

You don’t need multi-million-pound budgets to achieve great results. For every one of our clients, we are that backroom. We’re the ones working tirelessly behind the scenes to make their marketing objectives a reality. Think of us as a well-oiled machine, helping businesses to thrive.

With a plethora of creative agencies in the area, why should companies choose to work with the Backroom?

We want you to think of us as an extension to your own team. So, if you could use an extra pair of hands, we’re here for you.

Our sole purpose is to support your business, whether through strategic thinking, great design, transforming your online presence or delivering a social content plan. Most often, it’s a combination.

If you’re looking to build momentum in your marketing and achieve the domino effect, come and see us. The door to the Backroom is always open.


Case Study

Crafting Chimo’s brand to build marketing momentum

Lloyds – Chimo, Sheffield. Pictured, Chris Hudson. ©Victor de Jesus/UNP

Chimo Holdings are world-renowned for their unique blend of traditional Sheffield craftsmanship and modern technology. They manufacture an impressive range of high-quality cutlery, gallery trays, silver, giftware and promotional merchandise, and they count some of the world’s best hotels and restaurants as loyal customers.

The family business was established in the 1980s, uniting several independent Sheffield manufacturers, including one dating back to 1750, with the common purpose of creating quality products for a modern world, whilst preserving traditional values and practices.

Their latest line is an exclusive range of giftware in pewter, silverplate and superior Britannia silver to commemorate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. The range includes a set of Queen’s Head teaspoons cast from the original 1977 Jubilee die.

Chimo were the proud winners of the top manufacturing award at the prestigious Made in Sheffield Awards in 2016/2017, which recognised the company’s impact on the steel city’s reputation. They also had the honour of a Royal visit in 2013, when HRH The Princess Royal toured the factory.

Chris Hudson is the director and owner of Chimo Holdings but prefers to go by ‘team principal’. He said: “To put it simply, without my team of highly skilled craftspeople, I’d have no products and no company. I need them just as much as they need me to do the sales and management and take the financial risks. We all bring our own strengths and work together as a team, so I’m the Team Principal.”

In 2018, Chris was awarded an MBE for his work in exports and charities. He is currently the chair of Work-Wise, which encourages young people to pursue careers in manufacturing.

“I run this company with many people who only have a few GCSEs, but they’re brilliant craftspeople. I think the focus on young people is being lost at the moment, and that’s why we need Work-Wise. We need to celebrate everyone’s skills, not just the academic ones,” he added.

The Backroom Agency have been working with Chimo Holdings for over five years. In that time, they’ve developed the company’s branding, built three websites (with the latest being a site dedicated to the Platinum Jubilee line) and delivered a range of communications which work in tandem to create momentum across all their marketing channels.

Chris said: “The relationship we have with the Backroom is fantastic. Their name is exactly right. We don’t need a marketing team in-house, but the Backroom are always there when we need them. They’ve come to know our company so well, it’s almost like having someone in-house anyway – the quality of everything they deliver for us is always first-class. And in my line of work, you have to be a stickler for quality!”