Mini Squawk: Ben Essen, CSO, Iris Worldwide

In the nine months since last speaking, it was great to catch up with Ben again and hear all about how Iris have been doing.

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Suki caught up with Ben in April last year so we were keen to hear how Iris Worldwide have been getting on over the last year as well as what's in store for them in 2021. Suki 'met up' with Ben again at the end of January this year.

Ben touches upon the Covid Continuancy Sprints which the agency set up as a digital way to help clients around the world fix their marketing challenges - they did about 50 of them and found that this frequent contact enhanced the depth of their relationships. It has also meant clients have been much more transparent around the help and support they need. Integration and silos are also discussed whilst Ben further gives examples of working with clients including Pizza Hut.

Looking ahead to 2021, Ben discusses the still relevant legacy models (e.g. fast fashion) but how these are now on a slow decline due to the emerging trend in the opposite direction of more sustainable, more digital models which brands are looking towards - and now they're asking how do they jump track to a newer model. Ben refers to over 35% of FTSE 100 companies now having a net zero target but very few organisations actually having a strategy  on how to achieve that target. 

Ben is a pioneer for pushing sustainability to the forefront of our industry's agenda. He was shortlisted for the Oystercatchers Awards 2020 for his contribution to climate change, with the judges commenting:

"A very admirable and effective induvial. Ben has not just raised awareness of the lack of action inside our industry when it comes to climate change, but he has managed to move individuals and major companies to action."

You can see more from Iris Worldwide here on our website. 

Suki Thompson

Founder / Chair, Oystercatchers

Suki Thompson is an entrepreneur and transformational business leader. She is CEO and co-founder of Oystercatchers and part of the Centaur management team where she is helping lead Centaur Media, the UK’s leading B2B media publisher, through a journey of transformation anchored in the ability to advise, inform and connect. Suki leads the strategic development of Oystercatchers and is the driving force behind the proprietary evaluation model Optimise™. She works with businesses on transformational change and is part of the team commercialising the ‘M3 model’ bringing marketing and digital together. Suki is also passionate about capability and learning.