Awards case study: Chameleon reveals how it’s helped clients triple their share price
Chameleon, winner of B2B Marketing’s PR agency of the year award for 2017, shares how it injects colour into its clients’ marketing strategies
Chameleon is anything but beige. It fearlessly believes there is no reason why the smallest agencies shouldn't deliver the same inspiration as the largest creative agency, or deliver the bottom-line impact of an Accenture or McKinsey.
A long-term concern of Chameleon’s is that communications is viewed as a cost centre, delivering little bottom-line benefit. It encourages B2B companies to view PR as a fundamental component of their wider business and marketing strategy and believes the most important part of communications comes before a campaign. It’s brand-building, market positioning, audience insight and messaging that form the foundation of success. This thinking reshapes the way CEOs and CFOs of B2B brands view marketing as a driver of tangible business outcomes.
This approach is why Chameleon has helped clients triple their share price, win new customers and generate new businesses pipelines worth millions.
About the agency
Chameleon shows how a B2B PR agency can broaden its relevance, challenge preconceptions and deliver brilliant results for its people and clients. It has also turned itself into a consultancy that lives within the B2B tech industry, not simply serving it from the outside:
- Launching the new strategy for Digital Catapult, directly supporting the CEO and UK minister of state for digital and culture
- Strategic advisory to ClubCISO, the association for chief information security officers - developing messaging and chairing events for the most senior technology professionals in the FTSE.
- Working with private equity firms, VCs and leading banks representing billions of pounds of tech investment
Contribution to clients’ businesses
Chameleon helps its clients ‘be less beige’. It wants them to avoid a dreary, undifferentiated corporate tone that can be a millstone round the neck of B2B businesses. This year it has:
- Turned away pure-play PR work believing media relations cannot exist in a silo. It only work with brands where it is directly involved as part of integrated marketing.
- Created targeted and relevant content marketing. One programme brought in over 100 enterprise leads from one piece of content, while its work for Unify has become the most downloaded marketing collateral in the history of the company.
- Put clients on the front pages: In response to a global security vulnerability, Chameleon positioned its client Bitdefender in the FT no fewer than three times in a week, it also created coverage in outlets ranging from the Evening Standard to The Sun.
- Supported the next wave of investment in the industry. It helped fast-growing tech companies maximise the impact of series A and B funding rounds, enabling truly disruptive market entries.
‘Think big and inspire’ is one of Chameleon’s core values as a business. It’s also about being less beige. In fact it’s built into the fabric of our business:
- Its ‘Training Tuesday’ series led to its team watching the London Philharmonic Orchestra play and had a toymaker share his secrets.
- Chameleon offers staff £100 per year to explore new areas of creativity, from buying a mandolin and a telescope to learning Finnish and yoga.
- Its campaigns have seen it fly planes over stadiums, explore attitudes to facial hair and pepper London’s shopping queues with historical characters.
Financial performance and stability
Over the past two years, Chameleon grown its top line by 22% and profit by 331%. Its rapid and sustained financial growth has gone hand-in-hand with its strategic transformation. It now provides consultancy and a diversified portfolio of services to some of the very biggest and brightest brands in B2B technology. Average client fees per month have increased from £4,000 to £10,000 and its 20% profit margin means it is one of the best performing PR agencies.
Staff and community engagement
The Chameleon team is made up of 17 people with diverse backgrounds, interests and skills. It is united by a passion for delivering strategic consultancy to transformative businesses and having great fun in the process. A few facts:
- The management team is 55% women
- 20% of employees are from ethnic minorities
- 18% of our staff work part time, including those within the management team
- 15% of profits go back to our people in bonuses
The Chameleon team has supported (pro bono) Techfugees, the volunteer charity for people in tech supporting refugees in Europe, and through its long running relationship with New Horizon Youth Centre, created a campaign that’s been featured in The Tate Gallery.
Key initiatives and achievements
- Services outside of traditional PR and social (such as influencer relations, insights and strategy, growth marketing, sales support, content marketing) now make up 26% of its fee income.
- Staff retention is 94% and its net promoter score (NPS) is +77.8.
- It has a client retention rate of 94% and a client NPS of +63.
- 100% of its surveyed clients say they would recommend Chameleon.
- 18% of our fee income comes from relationships with our partner network outside of the UK.
- Finalist, 2017 Holmes Report: EMEA Technology Consultancy of the Year
- Finalist, 2016 Amazon Growing Business Awards: Employer of the Year
Ann Naumann , director of content and communications, Code42
“Chameleon sets the bar for us on what it means to partner with an agency. They understand our business and our culture and they push us to be more creative and strategic, which drives results. We truly consider them an extension of our marketing team.”