Episode 4 'Choosing an Agency' Season 2

Published on July 26, 2022 by Alex Holliman

Episode four of Choosing an Agency season two available now

In this episode, Alex and Gavin Shinfield, co-founder and CSO at Kyan, deep dive into how businesses can find aligned agencies and improve the quality of work they get from these partnerships. 

After getting to know each other and discussing topics such as business, design and technology, Gavin shares his experience of how clients and agencies should collaborate to maximise the benefits for both. Among the many topics discusses they talk about sharing information and budgets when asking for pitches, what to look for in an agency, references from past clients, qualifications and contracts. 

They also cover whether brands should opt for a full service or specialist agencies, as well as sustainability in business and collaborating with B-corps.  

Gavin Shinfield - Choosing An Agency

Episode four, series two transcript

Alex Holliman: Hello, and welcome to choosing an agency. My name is Alex, founder of agency climbing trees. And I’m here to talk about how to get the right agency to grow your business. So today I’m joined by Gavin Shinfield, from the fantastic Kyan. Hi, Gavin.

Gavin Shinfield: Hi there, Alex. lovely to be here.

Alex Holliman: So for people who are just meeting me for the first time, could you share a little bit more about who you are? And what you do?

Gavin Shinfield: Sure, certainly, um, well, my name is Gavin Shinfield. And I’m one of the co-founders of Kyan. Kyan is the Technology Agency powered by people. We are a 50 Men, 50 person digital team, based in based in Guilford, in the UK, at the moment I am out in Switzerland, and that we moved here from my wife’s work. So I’m fully I’m working fully remotely at the moment. And one of my key roles for Kyan is as Chief Sustainability Officer.

Alex Holliman: Excellent. And then in terms of your experience of the agency world, how long have you been working in the agency world?

Gavin Shinfield: Well, it’s a it’s a really good question. I mean, I guess, specifically, if we’re talking about digital agencies I’ve been working in in specifically in that region, for as long as Kyan’s been running. We started Kyan 18 years ago, incorporated in 2002, first year trade in 2003. Up until up until that point, I’ve been working in sort of very general, I guess it was agencies, but as with marketing publishing, and and this was a time when websites or professional websites were really just really just becoming popular. And yeah, my, my busted chart, we, traditionally were a print house, and I was running the studio there. And my boss would charge me say, Look, we should be doing websites, and you’re going to find out how we do that. So I was thrown into the deep end, and yeah, became worked out how we do it. And we started doing websites, but for my, my agency there, but at that time, I was working. I was talking with a very good friend of mine, Piers Palmer, who is co-founder of Kyan. We said well, we should we should really do this ourselves. We don’t want to do publishing anymore. He was working in an for an events and CD ROM authoring company. So yeah, we just we decided that we were going to start Kyan. So really, Kyan is my experience of digital agencies. That’s it. That’s it, man. And boy, if you if you like, but what I do know is that the agency world is very friendly, very open, very open for communication between agencies. And I’ve made a lot of lot of good friends. Networking in, in the agency world, like yourself.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. And I think on that side of things, I can remember the evolution from the old world to when what we do was called New Media. And is this really going to take off and work? And now is just the way that we actually do things.

Gavin Shinfield: Exactly. I’ve got a quick story for you. There’s people sometimes ask me what what is Kyan mean? Why why Kyan? And we’re originally we were called Kyan media. And that’s because Kyan or Kyanos is the Greek or old Greek for new or fresh. So it was kind of a play on words. So it was new media, fresh media, Kyan media, and that’s where that’s where the word came from in the first place. And then around 2010, we got the chance to get the Kyan. Because Kyan media is a bit of a mouthful, right? So we were around 2010, we got the chance to buy the Kyan.com domain name from a from an American goth band who had been who’d been squatting on it. So yeah, that’s where we got our four letter domain.

Alex Holliman: Wow, that’s pretty special. Do you mind me asking how much that cost set you back?

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, sure. It was $5,000.

Alex Holliman: That’s quite recent so we so we’re climbing trees online marketing limited, which rolls off the tongue. And so we’ve abbreviated that obviously to climbing trees. And we got the.com for climbing trees from a American arbour, arborist. I think it was $800. 

Gavin Shinfield: Nice. 

Alex Holliman: But a four letter domain for $5,000. That’s tremendous.

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah. Obviously, it’s a little while ago now, I think I think the prices would have come up some. It’s also it’s a four letter domain and it’s unique right? I’m pretty unique. Now that Kyan has become since we started Kyan It’s become more of a popular boy’s name. So I think we’re we’re now up against a French rapper. And and someone some American film, some American TV bloke called Kyan as well. So those are the searches if you put Kyan in you’ll find us, French rappers or American TV stuff.

Alex Holliman: Two years after we started, there was a Welsh rock band called climbing trees who was having a brand of music, similar Karna who are competing for us for position one for the same climbing trees. They’ve not released an album for a few years, so I hope they’re going to wither on the vine. Is that really bad to wish a  Welsh rock band?

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, I don’t know. I guess when if people are looking for an agency, there’s there’s probably fairly slim chance that they’re going to be contacting Welsh rock bands or French rappers isn’t there? I think I think we’ll be alright. I think we’ll be the ones that are found.

Alex Holliman: Perfect. So in terms of your role, what sort of stuff do you do on a day to day basis?

Gavin Shinfield: Well, I’m I’m lucky in it as much as I started, we really feel like we’re starting to to inhabit that that founders role more, myself Piers who I’ve already mentioned, and Laurent, Laurent Maguire, we’re the three founders of Kyan. And we we’ve now grown the business to a size where we are obviously still involved in the day to day, but we are we’re at the point now where we’re able to work more on the business and in the business. And as I mentioned before, my recently I’ve taken on the role of Chief Sustainability Officer and that takes up a good portion of my time, helping the company become B corp certified, which I know is something that’s close to your heart. And generally managing our sustainability, which we see is just really key to, to business performance. And certainly, certainly in the future, this is becoming something that is going to be required, by the Better Business Act by and by, by our clients as we start to work for, for bigger clients. They take their ESG environmental social government’s performance a lot more seriously back then the smaller businesses that we’ve worked in with the past so so we find that, that put a pushing that to the fore and myself taking the role of CSO is because really important. Above that I’m you know, I work on, on on networking, sales, and agency fame really coming out and speaking to good people like yourself and telling everybody about what it is that Kyan do.

Alex Holliman: And so to get a feel for who you are, and this is one of my favourite questions to get a feel for who you are, if you could invite four people past or present to a meal, who would that be?

Gavin Shinfield: I love these questions. Is this a really good one? Isn’t it? And my wife actually asked us a slightly different question. And then I’m gonna come back and answer yours because the two are related. And she said, If you could live at any period in history, when would that be said there’d be now I think, now is really, really one of the most exciting times to be alive, you know, we can look back on with rose tinted ideas of what it might have been like to be in the 60s and all of these all of the all of the social change that was happening there, or, you know, some amazing period of Roman history or ancient Greece or something. But I think really the the living in in the world that we live in today. Particularly I obviously we’ve got our challenges, climate crisis being one of the big ones, but yeah, the the the possibilities that technology affords us today is just, it’s just incredible. So I think now is the best time to be alive. 

Alex Holliman: And that’s, that’s really interesting. So I think people do hark back to a vision of at some point in the not too distant past things were things were better then. But I think if you look at all metrics, like literacy, infant mortality, wealth, income distribution, there are just a whole phenomenon, and array of statistics where the charts are moving upwards and to the right, so that people are living better lives in the majority. And that’s not to say that everything’s perfect. And like you say, we don’t have our challenges, but things are better than they have been. I don’t think that’s I don’t think as a I don’t know, whether it’s a British thing or a species thing, but we don’t allow ourselves to actually feel good about, you know, some of the good stuff that is going on today.

Gavin Shinfield: That’s right. Yeah, I think there is there is always a tendency to catastrophise sometimes. And I think when you when you look at the quality of life that were afforded, and yeah, you say general living standards, I think we are living in the best time. And we can only we can only improve on that. Let’s make it better. Right. So to answer your question about my fancy dinner party, I would I would definitely pick living people so that I could actually have this dinner party if, if, if it was if I if I if I had the connections to to invite these people? And they said yes. And I’m going to teach slightly because have you seen the Netflix documentary abstract? It’s from a few years ago? The first one came out in 2017. And I think then the second series was 2019.

Alex Holliman: I don’t believe I have is this about art

Gavin Shinfield: is well, it’s um, it is about art is the subtitle is art of design. But what but what’s interesting about it is to what we’ve been talking about today is the is this focus on blending art and technology. And the where the where those two things intersect, or in fact, well, so my first guest would be Neri Oxman. She was on this abstract documentary, which is where I’m coming from, Neri Oxman. She’s Israeli woman, and she is the head of the MIT Media Lab. If you haven’t heard of the MIT Media Lab, it’s it’s kind of like the experimental art wing of MIT. If that sounds kind of crazy it is, and what she’s what that what she talks about is the intersection of art, design, science and technology. So if you sort of think about all of those things like art is the pure expression, whereas design perhaps is looking more about the application of artistic endeavour into the real world, in the same way that science is the pure form of maths, physics, the our understanding of the universe, generally biology and, and all of those things, those good things that we learned at school, whereas technology is the application of science in the real world. So what she was looking at is the intersection of those fours, as a quadrant. And they’ve come she comes up with some absolutely incredible thing like the, the Netflix documentary is about bio architecture. So she had this thing where she created. She created, the idea was, what would what would what if we were to do construction on Mars, what would we what would we do? How would we do that? Because we can’t take our cranes and our building materials to Mars is this great. So what she her her, her solution was to create mini robots that span silk, like spiders, or like a silkworm. So that so she had these, these mini mini mini bots that work together, running from a computer programme. And they made these big, like silk tubes, basically, that can be used, as you know, to create architectural structures, things like that. It’s just it just just blows my mind. And I think that’s that’s the thing. That’s where I get really excited because I come from an art background, art history graduate, but oh, let’s say I started the design business and then started a web design business ended up running a software company. Because what we do now is basically it’s all digitalization digital transformation. Really, over the years that we’ve been operating, we’ve, we’ve done all manner of things digital, but around 2017, we really focused on being digital product, digital transformation. And that’s, that’s where we that’s where we see our strengthens our real USP now and so, to me, it’s that intersection of design technology. And how the two play off each other that really gets me excited.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. And is that sort of thing that she’s talking about with the mars construction is that biophilic design?

Gavin Shinfield: So biophilic design is a slightly slightly so this is this what she’s actually talking about, she turns five architecture biophilic design is, is also a really interesting area. But that’s more it’s really more of a an an architectural practice. So things like the greens, green skyscrapers that they’re developing in, in Singapore, and other places around the world where they’re, though they’re creating for fitting parks on the top of skyscrapers and midway in skyscrapers. So this architecture is another thing that really gets me excited. And there’s, there’s actually a great, great series running on radio four just at the moment talking about glass in architecture, and one of the things was, I think it was called streets in the sky is the second episode in this series, and they were talking about, you know, the, the sort of the, the experiments of the 1960s, where they created they tried to create these streets in the Sky Park Hill in Sheffield, but which was an amazing brutalist structure with with great walkways, they created the walkways on Park Hill, three feet, three feet or four feet, however wide the walkways were, they didn’t they didn’t build it on human scale, they made it big enough, so you could get a milk float down. They were delivering milk to people. So it’s really making, you know, rather than over dense housing, they wanted to create space. And it’s only because these things were left, left to left to rot basically, that they became havens for drug dealers, and really sort of bad areas with social problems. But now it’s being rehabilitated. And they’re bringing in the biophilic architecture of biophilic design to actually enhance all that stuff. So it’s a fascinating area.

Alex Holliman: And that’s an internationally renowned unit of measurement that milk float.

Gavin Shinfield: Absolutely, yeah yeah.

Alex Holliman: Perfect, so who’s next at your dinner party?

Gavin Shinfield: I know this. I think this dinner party is going to take the whole the whole of the all of the sessions talk about isn’t it? So I’ll run through them and actually most of these people come from from from watching the the abstract series which I couldn’t really really recommend. So the other the next on the list of be Tinker Hatfield. Now Tinker Hatfield is probably the most famous footwear designer, ever. He’s, he’s the guy he’s the genius behind a lot of the Nike iconic design, Nike iconic designs, and and most of the Air Jordans from Jordan three onwards. I’m a big trainer head.

Alex Holliman: That’s right. And I remember seeing you post something about the podcast, very sneakonomics.

Gavin Shinfield: I did call some sneakonomics. Again, this is another another podcast to check out if you’re if you’re, if you’re interested in in the history of trainers or not at all, from a business perspective and sneakoconomics is really, really exciting. I mean, it’s so close to our hearts. It’s the the closing periods where talks about sustainability, and it talks to the stories of the Bayeux guys talks how Nike you know, how Nike combated and turned around the negative press they were getting about sweatshops and, and all that stuff that was happening and then from moving away from from from that criticise you’ve been, you’ve been really, really sort of public enemy number one as a business to now one of the leading leading people in in in sustainable footwear and sustainable business models in the far east as well. So yeah, it’s really good. It has everything it has has marketing. It has competition it has how to treat you employees. Sneakonomics is the best business podcasts I’ve listened to because I sometimes find these a bit dry. I mean, I’m hoping that ours is going to be dry today, Alex and I’m enjoying it so far. So but yeah, I can thoroughly recommend sneakonomics from a from a historical history of footwear, but also as as some great business advice.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. Yeah.

Gavin Shinfield: So who’s next? Okay, well, there’s so I’ve had Neri Oxman Tinker Hatfield now I’m going to go to Ghana just okay. Like to say what let’s finish off with the, with my with my trilogy from from from abstracts. So the last one I’m going to pick is a he’s actually a light artist called Olafur Eliasson. And what he does is sort of creates space using light. Sounds kind of strange. But it’s actually really, really interesting. And the reason that I would invite them to my party is alongside what Neri Oxman was doing he he uses his art on design, he actually so his, his practice being a live artist, actually developed into an architectural practice. Well, so again, this is the area where where you see are becoming something that is more useful, I think it is, art sort of shines a light on, on our human endeavour and enables us to say things that that we perhaps can’t say in other in other ways. But to then see it translated into into real world applications is what gets me excited. And one of this a lot of his pieces have have a have an environmental stilt, which is which is one of the thing that excites me. So one of the things that one of the pieces that that they cover in abstract is to highlight the the melting of the ice caps, which is although obviously one of the one of the one of the very visible areas of climate change, we can measure that measure the carbon intensity of, of the human carbon use by the reduction of the ice caps, and the fact that that’s, that’s one of the very obvious signs of global warming. Say it’s very obvious, but it’s right out there, right. It’s in it’s in it’s in the Arctic and Antarctic, so although it’s, it’s tangible, it’s, it’s removed from our experience yet. So what he did was get some massive pieces of ice flow that had already broken off from the icebergs and then arrange them in, in arrangements around London in like big Stonehenge type. eye circles if you like. And the idea to be that you just see the ice, these huge, enormous blocks of, of glacial ice, which is amazing stuff, if you’ve never seen it up close, it’s, it’s kind of blue, because it has such a, such an old oxygen content, the the the oxygen has been been trapped in the ice for so long, that it becomes the end, it’s very compacted. So everybody has this amazing blue colour. We went to Chile, my wife and I, a few years back and visited the glaciers there and seeing it,

Alex Holliman: that’s what I was gonna say, the only ice that seemed like that on glaciers in the Alps in France or Italy, that kind of thing.

Gavin Shinfield: There you go. But by bringing it in putting into London, and then just letting it melt, and seeing, actually just having it in a in a big public square, and then you see it the next day, it’s getting smaller, and you see the next day is when it’s still and then until it’s completely gone. So this ephemeral work of art is really highlighting what’s happening in the real world. But out of our out of our cotton out of our cat out of our field of vision, making making the making the invisible visible is at work.

Alex Holliman: And then finally,

Gavin Shinfield: number four, again, on a on a on an ecological blank bent, I would have Mike Berners Lee, Tim Berners Lee’s brother is one is a writer and researcher. He is famous for for being a specialist on carbon footprints. And he wrote one of my one of my favourite books on on on that subject. And it’s this one how bad are bananas. So it’s what I like about it is actually it’s, it’s a it’s a real dip in book. So if you’re interested in carbon footprints or, or working out, it’s I’d really recommend looking at it, it just, it just runs through any number of things and gives you the carbon cost of using or consuming that thing. So anything from a banana, which actually isn’t so bad, but you know, we think shipping bananas halfway around the world is awful. But actually because of because they’re grown in natural sunlight, not house. They’re transported by sea, not by air. Last well they come in their own packaging. Actually, they’re not bad at all when it comes to in terms of feeding yourself, which is it is a hard thing to get your head around, right, actually, because 10 grams of carbon to get a banana over here, whereas actually some, some intensively farmed stuff in the UK, if it’s grown under under lighting is probably worse. 

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. Yeah, it makes sense

Gavin Shinfield: so so anyway, so it all sounds a little bit worthy, but actually it’s a really fun and funny book, as well as being hugely, hugely highlighting and then it goes right up to things like that gives you the the the racing for the world’s cloud and data centres, which is 160 million tonnes in 2020. So 10 grams for your for your humble banana but 160 million tones to run their Google data centres, not just Google data centres worldwide.

Alex Holliman: And when you start extrapolating that kind of data, I was looking into how much one Google search costs in the US, 

Gavin Shinfield: that’s really interesting. 

Alex Holliman: And so before we spoke this morning, have located something from 2009 that Google released where it says it’s point two of a gram.

Gavin Shinfield: There you go. So this is, and this is the interesting thing, this is what Mike talks about everything you think about, has a has a has a carbon cost. And actually, right, right, at the end, he says, fight this full stop. And he puts a big full stop on the page, and calculates the carbon cost of printing that full stop. So yeah, it’s just to get you thinking about the fact that the single, like just opening Google, even not doing a search like that has a carbon cost. And I think the thing is, because Because everything’s on screen, we kind of think it’s virtual. But to a degree, you know, carbon cost of printing a full stop, or a Google search all of these minute incremental things that we’re obviously not going to stop doing. But we need to always think about the fact that there is a price to pay. 

Alex Holliman: absolutely. So we’ll get down to business, in terms of, you know, why we’re here today. What do you feel can be done to improve the quality of work that a client gets from an agency?

Gavin Shinfield: That’s, it’s an interesting one, the, the quality of work, I mean, I think with with Kyan, we always we pride ourselves in in working in a very open and transparent way. And I think what what clients perhaps need to understand is, is that that close working and partnership with your agency is really the only way to get the best out of them. I think there’s, there’s, there’s a lot of the time when I guess I’m the I’m looking at the bad old days. Now when you’d have a brief thrown over the wall, written brief, go do that. And then you’d be trying to work out what the client wants. If you’re working in a silo, come up with some some some rough ideas, go back to the client, get minimal feedback, go away, slog your guts out again for a while, and it just is exhausting for everybody. So I think, for clients to be very available for their agency is the is the best way to get get stuff out of them. And to be honest about what they’re trying to do. So we we do a lot of collaborative workshops. One thing that’s worked particularly well for us is running the design sprints, which is a system of an intensive system of workshops, user research, design and prototyping developed by Jake Knapp for for the Google Ventures lab, so he was he was really frustrated by by long workshops that didn’t go anywhere at Google, when people were just sort of having really silly ideas coming in loving the sound of their own voice. So he created this framework that gets all of the ideas on the table, float the best ideas to the top democratises voices. So you’re not just hearing from one area of the clients business, you’re hearing from all of the aspects. You know, if we, if we’re design, if we’re working with the business, we want to hear from the CEO, we want to hear from the people on the floor, we want to have marketing, we want to hear from everybody who’s involved all stakeholders, we don’t want to just hear a lone client voice. And that’s how we get the best out of our clients. And I think the clients get the best out of us.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. And that ability to incorporate feedback, as your, as projects evolving is critical, because then the outcome can be moderated and affected. So there really isn’t the most impactful solution possible.

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, completely. And so on top of these workshops I’ve been describing, which is the way that we we start the business, we start the we start, that’s the starting point. But it’s something that is something that we repeat throughout the relationship, just to make sure you know, you’re not going to answer everything right at the start. You will start working then you need to, you know, especially with the work that we do, you know, some of our relationships have been running for 10 years, where we really are client partners as much as we are providers and, you know, a service based agency so we Alongside that, we also run agile project development. So everything is delivered in sprints. So you will see the client sees the product, the digital product as it’s being developed in increments. And in fact, we are in the way that we run, we run Agile Scrum. So you have a dedicated product team of designers, developers, and project managers. But we also have a client partner. And really, the client partner and the client together, inhabit the role that’s called product owner in a in a, in a sprint, and product owner is the person that directs the the incremental development of the project. So they will be involved in creating our backlog in prioritising which, which which features of the system we’re developing will be developed first. And then we develop that minimum feature set, and get it out there and test it. And then we were rolling in with the client. So you can see there that actually, that is a lot of investment from a client, right? That is a a number of man hours, but I think, you know, so for for any, any clients out there that are thinking of commissioning a digital product, or, you know, building bespoke software to help their business function better, which is what kyan does, they need to be aware that this level of investments was what’s required to get the best system for their business.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. So it’s an investment of time and buy in as well.

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, and an understanding of the process, which is, which is obviously something that we aim to, and to educate and, and help our clients with, because most of them are coming to us, because we’re the ones that build the software, not them. So even then we do work with, with clients who have their own development teams, and we’re more than happy to work with them. So yeah, we have a range of people coming to us as to as to what their what their knowledge is of running these type of projects. And that’s obviously something that we we are well versed in, in accommodating. But one thing I’m very keen on is it. I don’t think I don’t think agencies or any business should impose or impose or expose their systems. This is slightly counterintuitive, based on what I’ve just been saying that but you know, we always try to fit in with the client, and what their, what their requirements are and what their availability is. So we’re not going to say if you can’t work this way, we won’t do it. But all I’m saying is, is to get the best, best out of it. And to get the best result, there will be there will be a significant investment from the client to make that happen.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. You know, the best systems and processes evolve, like through time, so the structured approach that you guys have sounds like exceptionally solid and robust. But then, you know, I know for ourselves, for example, when we work with the client, we will have our set approach, this is our playbook, this is what we’re going to do. But we then take on board client feedback, and if we need to change that to accommodate certain nuances of their business, then we absolutely will do.

Gavin Shinfield: The good thing there is to remember is I think this is the from both sides of the client, client agency partnership. If you don’t like the way that that the client or the agency wants to work, there will be someone out there that will that perhaps is a better fit for you. And that’s what we’re talking about today. Right? It’s all about choice. And it’s all about understanding. So yeah, there’ll be a level of flexibility. But at the same time, if you want to be a complete hands off, here’s a brief delivery in three months time and I’ll get what I see Then there will be people out there that will deliver that way. But personally, I don’t think that’s how you get the best results

Alex Holliman: Absolutely sometimes I found the best results that I’ve got from working with external service providers have been the ones that have not just gone along with what my preconceived ideas were, but they actually interrupted that thought process educated me about a different way of doing things and it’s just a matter of being a little bit open minded, and almost empowering them and backing them with whether it’s the budget or the time to actually commit to the project.

Gavin Shinfield: And I think from both our perspective, the real challenge comes at the start of, of understanding of client and their business. Right and you know, we we, as service providers, we have the we have our areas of expertise, but with bring those to bear on, you know, on an understanding of what the client’s requirements are and what their business is and what it needs. And sometimes, if we do our job properly and do our research in well enough in the first place, you will, you will have the insight that that perhaps the client is too close to see. And you can you can bring that to bear and really deliver.

Alex Holliman: What’s the loss at saying you can’t read the label from the inside of the bottle?

Gavin Shinfield: Exactly that.

Alex Holliman: So in terms of as an agency owner, how important is it for you to qualify leads? And then there’s a sort of subset of that? How important is it for a client to share a budget?

Gavin Shinfield: For us, it’s It’s absolutely vital. I mean, we, I think, again, this comes down to the honesty and transparency thing, obviously. Obviously, any client, anyone, anyone who’s commissioning a piece of work, whether you’re aware where they are, you’re having some building done at home, or you’re building a piece of digital software, where standards such as parents, you want to get the best, you want to get the best deal. So you want to get the best deal for yourself, you’ll get the best deal for your company. And and agencies understand that. But at the same time, if if if clients are too guarded and secretive about what their budgets are, what their expectations are. And you know who else is who else is Who else they’re speaking to, we really want as, as an agency, for us to consider taking on a piece of work, we will we will always wants to know a budget. Yeah, even if it’s a range, that’s a that’s a given, we can’t, we found if we didn’t know. And obviously, we can talk to you about overall budgets and orders of magnitude based on what we’ve done for other people and other clients of similar nature in the past. But without knowing what your what the client’s budget is, we really can’t consider taking on a piece of work, or a pitch. Especially specifically pitch. And if you want clients, if you want agencies to do work upfront for free, you really need to, you need to be be open and honest with them about what the budget expectations are, who they’re who, who the other people in the running are, how many of them there are. Because without this, we know we’re sailing blind. And I just don’t think it’s fair to have an X amount of agencies doing or doing a, you know, what can be a considerable amount of work upfront to win your work, when you know that you’re not going to take them on? I think that’s a terrible thing to do. If you’re just making up numbers.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely, absolutely. That’s a, I’d say morally reprehensible thing today. And in terms of sharing that information, to know, like budget, other agencies to speaking to, it’s really insightful, because then you can make a choice as to whether that set is one that is going to be you’re going to have the ability to actually smack it out of the park or not. And so if you’re, if you’re if you’re coming up again, so I got invited to pitch for a project for the Law Society. And we worked. So it was just after I started, there was me. And I think I had one Freelancer alongside me, the Law Society business. And then we were up against like, I think there were two agencies who were in the top 50 In the UK, and me for my little home office in jumps with in 2010. I was just, I can’t just can’t commit to the, I haven’t got enough time to actually respond to the pitch. Whereas if I’d have known that actually, it was other freelancers that might have been more compelled to do it. So the set of agencies you’re pitching guys, I always find quite interesting. And,

Gavin Shinfield: you know, I think I think, you know, sometimes clients can be quite guarded about that. But if you think, you know, equally when we’re when we’re talking when we’re talking about these things, who we as providers know what we’re best suited, what sort of projects were best suited for. And if you see yourself up against a number of other agencies, and you’re the odd man out, you say, well, maybe they’ve misunderstood who we actually are and the services we provide, because people come to us and they’re, you know, they’re looking for Mark ons work. They’re looking for advertorial work they’re looking for. They’re looking for a digital campaign partner, and that’s not what we are, but the They don’t unnecessarily understand that digital product, digital transformation digitization, even though we’d say on our website, that this is purely what we do, and what we do, sometimes that that message can get lost in translation. So you might think you’ve got the best set of agencies to deliver, but the, you might have gone a bit wrong. And and I think that if you don’t let other people know, on the on the list to say, Well, I’m not sure you should be speaking with these people, because they probably won’t be able to deliver what it is you’re looking for based on the brief, or conversely, say, look, based on the people you’re talking to, they’re going to be better placed. And you know, let’s have, let’s have that honesty from the start, we won’t go for work that is not suited to us. Because it’s just, it’s just done. It’s not, it’s not worth it. You know, when no one no one, no one gets the no one gets, no one gets what they want out of that. If you’re hiring an agency that’s going to struggle to deliver your brief and the agent, and whereas an agency is struggling to deliver that brief, whatever, you know, whatever the that way, that’s, that’s the that’s a surefire way to lose money is in my experience. So making sure that you are well connected, your your values are aligned, your ways of working are aligned, and that the brief is clear and understood. And that we’re being open and honest about about about who we’re talking to possible providers. Those are the best ways to to make sure that both parties are happy.

Alex Holliman: So when a client is starting to look for an agency, Gavin, what are the signs that thinks he’s going to be good or bad fit for a client? Yeah, I think it’s

Gavin Shinfield: quite hard sometimes for, for clients to know exactly. What What’s the I think the terminologies that the agencies use can sometimes be a bit confusing for clients. So I can I can definitely see where, where the where the where some of the confusion can arise. Like I said before, I think I think it’s probably sort of stems from the areas of more generalist agencies where you would come and your will always saw it, didn’t we, one, your one stop shop for digital, everything full service, full service, the full service agency, I don’t think really exists anymore. And to be honest, I think that’s for the better. And it’s certainly the certainly a route that that serve kyan well. As I mentioned before, purely focusing on digital transformation digital product. And that’s not to say that we don’t know about the other services, we will obviously, we will obviously help our clients provide someone provide them services if if we don’t offer them and you know, we partner with with companies like yourselves, we don’t we don’t do SEO, we don’t do PPC we could do we could get people in and we’ve we’ve talked about that in the past about having a a digital marketing arm to our to our, to our offering. But to be honest, I don’t think that serves companies. Well. So that’s one thing I would I would I would I would be that was one recommendation I would make is to be wary of someone that says they can offer you everything. Go to a specialist agency, go to an agency that will that will specialise in delivering online software or in delivering traffic for your website or in delivering content. You know, I don’t think unless you go to some of the larger players that really doesn’t exist these days. And to be honest, even going to them, so many of them are outsourcing and bringing in other agencies. Absolutely. White labelling those services. Yeah. So yeah. Bigger does not necessarily mean better. In my experience, and I think you and I were talking about this, actually, Alex, when we are saying well, we’re seeing some some some increased demand, because digital services are so high in such high demand at the moment. Yeah, there’s a trickle down to the mid tier and to the smaller providers, for some firms are really quite large clients. But I think what those are not those, a lot of those even those larger clients who would have gone to your W PPS and a large conglomerate, large group agencies before They’re finding they’re getting better service by coming to mid tier providers because they will work harder and do a better job and quite probably put more and more senior people on your account rather than, rather than if you’re, if you’re if you’re a second or third string client to a large agency, you’ll end up with you’re finding yourself with a with a junior staff with a lot of junior staff on your account. And that doesn’t necessarily serve you the best.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely, I think that’s definitely one way that we can outcompete larger agencies as a business in terms of our ability to service clients. So our approach to a lot of what we do as a business in terms of SEO, PPC, social media ads, he’s up there with the really high standards you’d want in our industry. But where I think we out compete people is in terms of client management, Client Servicing account management, those sort of basic fundamentals, which are large, if you’ve got a small or medium sized client and a really large agency, they can get a little bit lost sometimes.

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, 100% agree with that.

Alex Holliman: And I think the other thing in terms of full service versus specialism is if you’ve got a full service agency, they can have quite a narrow depth of experience across a wide range of services. Whereas someone like Kyan, for example, you have a deep deep specialism with years and years of accumulated experience from a really senior team that can be deployed to the clients greater advantage.

Gavin Shinfield: Absolutely. And also, having a dedicated team, I think that’s something that the client should definitely look for. I think we were kind, we always look to keep resource for an individual client from from although  we’ve got 50 people on the books, we will keep with him. As much as possible, we’ll keep that continuity of team. So you have the same people working on your account, that is that level of familiarity. And that’s, I think that’s another key to providing the best service.

Alex Holliman: And in terms of how do you introduce the client to the team that’s going to be working on the account during the pitch process or in the proposal stage.

Gavin Shinfield: I mean, it really, we try to make that as the team as available as possible throughout. As I’ve mentioned before, we you know, in during the during the specification periods, which which will be ongoing for larger projects anyway, certainly for all our type of projects. So yeah, you’ll the, in essence, the client will meet the team that will be delivering their project right at the start and having have availability throughout. Obviously, that doesn’t mean that the client will necessarily want to speak to the the back end developers on a daily basis, but the the fact is, they will know who they are. And they will have that have the ability to speak to them should they need to.

Alex Holliman: Perfect. So when, when speaking to clients, do you ever get asked by like new clients, whether they can speak to, you know, people you’ve worked with in the past some other organisations, other businesses, that kind of stuff in terms of like getting references and that kind of thing?

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, sure. I think I think references is a good idea and any, any, any, any, any agency that is a bit reticent to to give that access? Or to give those references? I think that’s probably should be a bit of a red flag for clients listening to that to find a new agency, because why would you not? Why don’t you know that we always try to conduct our business in the most honest and open way possible and yeah, giving accent giving our new clients or prospects, the ability to talk to, to our previous clients? Is this something that we’d be, we’d be more than willing to do? I think the idea of client roundtables for for agencies is really good ones as well to actually get the clients together in a room with the agency to actually to meet and talk about what their business challenges are. Where we’ve we’ve had some really good cross pollination from from from those sorts of sessions where you you actually introduce your clients to one another.

Alex Holliman: Wow, does that not feel like a bit like introducing your wife to your mistress or something? But it’s, is it because you know, Think with clients whose you try and make them feel like they’re the only one. And so to get them all into a room, 

Gavin Shinfield: Have you not heard about this? 

Alex Holliman: Well, I think I have I think about this the reality of it, I was just sort of thinking, how would it work?

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, I mean, obviously, you need to, I think, as, as I sort of mentioned, earlier on the call, we do, we do see our clients as partners, and we have some long standing relationships with them. So you get to know you get to know who’s going to who’s going to get on and who’s going to see value from being in a room together, you know, we try and try and keep the keep the oil and water separate, because you, you know that some people are going to collapse. So it’s probably slightly curated, rather than just have a open session and invite your entire client base.

Alex Holliman: That makes sense, that makes absolute sense. And then values and ethics. Gavin, how important are they in the client agency? Relationship?

Gavin Shinfield: absolutely fundamental. I mean, I think values and ethics in business generally being clear on your values. And, you know, your your purpose, as a business as, particularly as an agency is very clear. And if there’s a misalignment with with that, between your values and the way that you want to do business and, and the those of your clients, so that that’s gonna that’s a recipe for disaster. So yeah, we are, we are very focused on those. So our internal values and our external values. So it actually raises it raises a few smiles sometimes I think. So our first one is geekiness. Nice. Yeah. Okay, so and I think, you know, there’s something to do with the word geek people. So yeah, I think they just thought of it. But it’s a little bit like owning the majority of right if you we are we are geeks, we are we are very focused on what we do. And that’s not necessarily just the engineers, I think everyone at Kyan is very focused on their individual specialism be that the strategy UX, the creatives, they all they all geek out in their own way. And that’s, that’s definitely a common thread. So that geekiness sort of translates into passion for your job into what you do. The second one is generosity. So that’s obviously generosity of spirit, generosity. Being a team player, just just really, yeah, yeah, being be always being available, available to help. And I think that that level of generosity, generosity of spirit translates across the, the, the agency client relationship as well. We always look to, to to go over and above above and beyond, we will do what’s required to get the job done. And so that generosity is is there as well. The third one is drive. Which I don’t know if I’m allowed to say this on the podcast, but that translates as getting shit done. Yeah, it’s, we can, you know, we can all sit in a room and and prevaricate and have a talking shop and talk about things all day. But at the end of the day, we want to you want to do the best job we can for a client and that involves knuckling down hard work, and just getting it done 

Alex Holliman: perfectly, I think from having spoken to you for a quite well, quite a bit of time, I can definitely think that those values there is a sort of, they’re not just something you talk about they are when I’m when you were talking about and I sort of thinking well, yeah, I can see that I can I can I’ve experienced that having dealt with you. So they’re not just words on the website somewhere, there’s something that you try and like actively try and work from.

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, I think I I’m really I’m really happy with them. I think having having just having the three we looked at this in the past and you come up with a sort of list and it becomes like a big sort of manifesto of this is how our company behaves and itself that just gets lost somewhere just gets filed, but keeping it really simple. And then everyone knows that that these are the values by which we operate. And yeah, that’s true for us.  but the idea of purpose and purpose driven businesses. We were talking about this the other day when I explained. So how are you feeling about, about moving towards a more purpose driven business?

Alex Holliman: So I think we’re currently going through a process where we have evaluated our brand, our purpose, our vision, what we’re trying to do and the values that we have as well. And so they are in the process of being refined at the moment. And so it’s a bit backwards and forwards about them. Because I think there was the first set that I came up with maybe in 2010. And they weren’t well, no, it’s almost a toolkit that we used in the early stages of the agency’s growth. We’ve had a set of six that we’ve been working with, but I think yours are concise, there’s three of them. front of mind, easily understood, and I think we’re in the process of distilling ours into four. So there’ll be a big reveal about what that looks like from us. But I do just think the values come from wealth that primarily from me as the as the sole founder for you, it must have been a synthesis between you Laurent and Piers.

Gavin Shinfield: yeah absolutely. I mean, the, there’s, I think there’s there’s definitely been piers, I piers, and I’ve known each other since school, and yeah, we there’s and Laurent and I worked together for a long time before joining Kyan, and I was I was aware of him, and we knew each other as well. So we’ve been together a long time, and there’s no doubt that we we had different things, and we have our own personalities and our own value adds to the business. But I think that yeah, that that diversity. Diversity in skills is really good. Yeah, we’ve always sort of had we’ve sort of naturally carved our own our own areas, Laurent has always been a technical one. And yet he is our CEO, and he is he has that leadership and entrepreneurial spirit. Piers our head of people always been the, the, the people person, so he’s sort of naturally gravitated towards that. Looking after a staff and also sort of primary responsibility for our clients. And historically, my, you know, my area really was the design and leading the, the creative endeavours of the business, which as I said, sort of changed somewhat now, now that we’ve got, now that we’ve got proper grown ups in those positions doing doing that work better than I ever could have. Which is fantastic to see. But it just sort of opened the the open the possibilities for me to focus on on on other things and what we’re talking about now the purpose the you know, the actual ethical drive and sustainability of the business going forward. That’s been my my key focus. So it’s, it’s something that’s very, very dear to my heart and very important to client.

Alex Holliman: Perfect. So when a client is looking at an agency website, there’s very often there’ll be a little section with lots of accreditations you can have so what we do like there’ll be Google Bing, Facebook accreditations, I’m sure there’s one specific to your industry, you can get ISO accreditations. We’re both very interested in B Corporations. And that B Corp certification. What’s your take on accreditation? And how important it is for clients to select agencies? Yeah, I think you know,

Gavin Shinfield: I think it they have their place. Definitely. Really, we’ve probably been a bit a little bit sniffy about, about the general ISO accreditations, they tend to be something that you get forced into doing by, by company audits from people. But you know, what, I think a lot of the time they can feel like a box ticking exercise. Yeah, you’re putting a lot of paper in place that has to be reviewed at a certain level and has to be has to be updated on a regular basis. But that doesn’t necessarily have a big impact on the business. The only so we have we have got ISO accreditation standards. And we are actually currently going through 14,001 which is the which is the environmental accreditation. But I actually did that as part of our B Corp application. Sort of so it’s in support of that because I think B Corp goes to the heart of the business. Yeah, it looks at every aspect of it. So if you see that a company’s been through B Corporate accreditation and come out the other side have got certified. I think that is a that is a really good gold standard stamp of, of accreditation. And that’s something that is still, you know, still relatively new. But it’s becoming much, much bigger the demand for that right now is, is through the roof as we both for those who are waiting for certification. So yeah, it’s taking a long time. So I think that a lot of people will be looking for that going forward. We heard on the call yesterday, didn’t we this, uh, you know, some some, some suppliers are actually actually though this wasn’t our call, this was my, I run a run a B Corp Bootcamp for the British Interactive Media Association, that’s helping other agencies become B Corp certified, because that’s one of the things that is part of the part of the the core ethos is to spread the good news, too, and to get other people involved and to, to let them know what it’s about. So, but yeah, we’re hearing now have some, some clients, some, some, some, some companies who their first port of call will will always be the B Corp directory. So you can actually go to the B Corp, and see everyone who’s listed there. And that’s where they’re starting their search for, for any provider, agency and beyond. So that’s a good one.

Alex Holliman: And I know for our for ourselves, for example, we’ve moved our energy supplier to a B Corp, we’ve got our mobile phone company, that will also be moved over to a B Corp. And so wherever possible, it’s a you’re working with like minded agencies who probably share that goes back to the values point, similar, so values

Gavin Shinfield: absolutely that absolutely that I know, you know, the, in my journey to get Kyan B Corp certified. I’ve just met the most amazing people and most amazing companies. very open, very, very supportive, very sharing and caring. Yeah, I just think it’s, it’s a great movement in that whole area of sustainable businesses becoming more and more important,

Alex Holliman: I think with stuff like carbon. And if that is legislated, where companies in the future have to put do a end of year financial report, but an end of year carbon impact report as well. And that is theirs, their taxation thresholds started to be put up on with the different scopes of emission, the scope three emissions, which are from your supply chain most loom interview for larger companies. And so I think as a subset of the B Corp thing, what you’ve done with the ISO accreditation is a sensible sort of move, and then mapping out and trying to manage and control your own carbon emissions as an organisation. I think that is something which there will be an upswing in interest in popularity and for procurement companies. If you know if if if you a large organisation, on the client side, you have to limit your scope three emissions, it’s put into the recruitment process, then, you know, way ahead of the curve, hopefully,

Gavin Shinfield: that’s that’s how I say it. I think, you know, the legislation in those areas, certainly, for companies of our size is a little way off. But like you say that doesn’t affect the that. That definitely will affect an already effects in in some in some territories that where they are required to report on these areas. Some countries have this already is coming to the UK, it will take a while. And so yeah, it’s just something that we all need to be ready for. And like you say, best to be ready now rather than wait for it to be put into law. I think there’s so what else could we be talking about here? We talked about it. So talk about because I mean, as far as other standards and accreditations I know, I think we’re a Microsoft Gold partner. We’re we’re, we’re a Kentico it’s a headless CMS system. We’re one of two Kentico gold partners in the UK, where we’re a stripe partner. So we’re stripe supplier, which is the payment gateway. We’re a partner of that as well. So we kind of we were looking at where where it makes sense, you know, where it’s where it’s doing that where it’s the value that we have for systems and products that we’re already using. We will we will join these sort of corporate accreditation systems. And it’s good for business, we see quite a lot of leads through through that type of thing. But as far as the client goes, I’m not really sure how meaningful they are. Over and above the the number of people asking with a Microsoft Gold certificate certification. I mean, what does that really mean?

Alex Holliman: I’m not sure there’s Bill Gates come and bow or somebody

Gavin Shinfield: just sent you a little rosette that you can put on your door? Yeah. Goldstar. Well done.

Alex Holliman: Perfect. We’re in our industry, we obviously have the Google Partners qualification. There’s one for Microsoft as well. And my faith, trust and confidence in those has the ministry time. And so initially, when they released the Google Partners programme, we got invited to a big swanky release, there’s going to be a UK wide advertising campaign, that’s going to be tremendous. And nothing’s really happened. And the whole thing sort of slowly been dialled back to a point where logically that wanting to be cynical, you could think that Google would want to disintermediate all Google Ads agencies and just automate the whole thing with AI and machine learning, and that kind of whiz bang technology. So that, yeah, yeah. So I have little faith in them as as a arbiter of what what a good agency looks like, and what a bad agency looks like, because you can have both on the same track.

Gavin Shinfield: I feel I largely feel the same about the about those type of individual, individual company accreditation, so I don’t really think that they’re, they’re worth very much what we’re doing. Do we mention awards as well, I suppose that those are the things that other agencies really love to see, you know, we are raw top 50. Top 100 agencies,

Alex Holliman: award winning agency,

Gavin Shinfield: we’re an award winning agency, I think every every company’s in the water in the agency.

Alex Holliman: We have never won an award. But we’ve never actually this concurrent with, we’ve never actually entered awards. And so we are not an award winning agency, it’s probably a pretty controversial if I was media trained to say that I can say that. 

Gavin Shinfield: Well, maybe, maybe you could go with that as a, you could go with that as your marketing messages we’re not with this is what makes us different. We’re not award winning, we think it’s

Alex Holliman: Rubbish. However, it is something we’re looking at. And I think that there are the awards, and then the awards. I got an email the other day where I could we were voted the third best Google Ads agency in the UK, and I could pay 750 pounds to get my trophy. And that was it. The handles. It’s almost like it was a money making exercise just and so that low value, but then you have stuff like Cannes, lions, and then everything in between, there’s a whole universe of awards. And so you have to really do the digging on what the award is, you know, who’s who’s you know, who’s judging? What are the merits of it? And that kind of thing?

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, you know, we have, we have put in four and we have won one awards in the past. I know some of them, some of them do mean, don’t some of them do mean a lot. I always, always value getting getting the ones that are voted for by your peers yet. So several times, we’ve won, we won. We won the local awards. He received, the white hive won hundreds of getting getting most respected with those. We also got most respected on the drum. That that meant a lot because you know that you’re being voted for by by your peers there

Alex Holliman: And they’ve been properly interrogated, and there’s some value weight and merit and that’s all opinion behind it is not just 750 pounds written out on a check.

Gavin Shinfield: Yeah, we did also get top placements in that in Best Companies to Work For this this year and to for me, you know, showing what we were just talking about, which is that the values and and the culture of the organisation having that recognised, you know, top flight at national level that was that was really rather special.

Alex Holliman: Yeah, absolutely. And I think sometimes with agencies to differentiate themselves. If every agency is award winning, if every agency is accredited, then there’s no there’s no differentiation there is there. And so it’s then like you say it’s the value of what the awards are and how the story behind them is bought out. And So that’s stuff about culture, and team and workplace that will be lied to, though that will underpin that, you know, as a client, you’re probably going to get a better quality of work because the staff are not like chained to a desk eating grow. They’re sort of feeling positive and motivated, and you’ll get some of the best work from them as a result

Gavin Shinfield: Of it. I strongly believe that, and obviously, in that, in these current times that have been sent to try us, I think, focusing on employee wellness and the the mental health and the, the, how solid the team is working together. That’s something that we all need to focus on. Not just agencies, but companies across the board has been a big challenge, isn’t it?

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. looking after people? Yeah. So in terms of some housekeeping stuff, then how important is signing a contract with a client? And then how important is a long term contract with a client?

Gavin Shinfield: Okay. Well, I think we have contracts with all of our clients, we’ve made sure that, you know, I think, in probably, in our earlier years, were a little bit fast and loose with that, and we probably didn’t have that level of, of company hygiene. But it’s something that’s really important, it gives it gives clarity for what’s what’s being provided. You know, obviously, we have contracts, and we have stated works. So we need to have both before we can proceed, because it’s it just gives that that level of maturity, and I think it protects both parties, and it’s, it’s really required. As far as long term contracts goes, I think, again, it’s it depends on on the type of services that are being provided with us, and the way that we we develop bespoke software for our clients. And we provide ongoing support for that software. Yeah. So yeah, it’s, it’s really important to know that for the, for the client to know that they’re going to have protection and ongoing support, we’re not going to disappear off into the ether, or suddenly turn around and say, No, we haven’t got any time for you. We, I think it’s, it’s really healthy. Obviously, for it’s very good, good business for, for agencies to have that retain profit as well. I think it’s an it gives, it gives us a level of security, around our revenue forecast and our planning, which enables us to grow and to be a stronger and bigger agency that serves our clients even better. So yeah, really, really important.

Alex Holliman: And I think the other thing that it allows you to do is, it allows you to make sure that you can resource projects clients adequately, because you’ve got that sort of formal agreement, so you can then hold on to and retain talent as well. So retaining the

Gavin Shinfield: Talent, and and also to keep the, to keep consistent teams in place for for those clients. And I think that’s, that’s one thing that we’ve had some of our clients we’ve worked with, for over 10 years. And they have they have dedicated teams that work on their projects. So that’s an interesting one with with for an agency, where you’re actually working on a variety of projects is sometimes the thing that attracts people to agency life. You know, they, they love the variety, I certainly like the challenge and the variety of working with different companies and understanding different types of business and bringing our skills to bear on those and to help improve their businesses. But yeah, if you’re working on if we have these, these these long, ongoing projects, we do want to keep a continuity further so that we’ve got that continuity of delivery, but at the same time, we recognise that we need to keep the team fresher to and to bring more and more to rotate people in and out of that so that there’s more depth, serve the depth and distribution of knowledge amongst the team so that we can continue to serve them going forward.

Alex Holliman: Absolutely. My, my previous jobs, I worked on the same account for seven years, and so forth. It was it was part of it, maybe 10% of the role. And so it was almost a monthly cycle. It just became ingrained into my psyche. So you knew what was happening and there was nothing new about it. And so there is a freshness to working on a different end You projects isn’t there? 

Gavin Shinfield: There is. Yeah. 

Alex Holliman: Perfect. So this has been great. So in terms of like agencies that you admire giving your space, which ones do you think is producing my fantastic work?

Gavin Shinfield: That’s a that’s an interesting one. Yeah, there’s some, there’s some big names out there. We’re particular fans of ThoughtWorks. They’re large American digital transformation agency. And again, I think they they do great work. But they also have have a strong ethos of, of innovation and supporting social and environmental causes, which has been a bit of a running theme today, isn’t it? Let’s face it. But yeah, that that’s, that’s one name that definitely stands out. We’ve always been a fan of being big fans of clear left the Brighton based digital transformation agency, then they they that they’re good friends of ours. So you know, we’ve always champion them and we’ve spoken each other’s events and things like that. So I’ll put a little shout out for that as well. One for the local lads.

Alex Holliman: Awesome. And so this has been great Gavin, where can people find out more about yourself and Kyan?

Gavin Shinfield: Well, kyan.com As we talked about our four letter domain, that’s kyan.com. It can Yeah, so sometimes people say how that how do you pronounce that? Kyan is what it is like cyan, but with a K, very easy to find that. Also, as far as I know, I’m the only Gavin Shinfield out there spells as it sounds. So you can you can find me on LinkedIn. I’m hanging out there quite a lot. Please just just drop me a line Couldn’t be simpler.

Alex Holliman: Excellent.  Thanks so much, Gavin.

Gavin Shinfield: Thanks so much, Alex. It’s been a pleasure.

You can listen to this one now on www.alexholliman.com or your usual streaming platform.