Agencies: creating hero moments to generate fame

'The marketing industry loves a piece of research...'

The agency market is a saturated space (There are over 17,000 Advertising Agency businesses in the UK as of 2023!) and it’s getting trickier for agencies to establish their brand, showcase their unique value proposition and outshine their rivals. This is why every agency requires a hero moment. But before you whip out the lycra and black mask, what does a hero moment mean, exactly? 

A hero moment is about creating something your agency can own: it’s an original, irrefutable piece of content that your agency can become famous for. And it will always come back to your unique positioning and speak directly to your target audience. It’s one big, meaty campaign that can be sliced and diced every which way to fuel everything, from brand awareness all the way down the funnel to sales conversation. And that brand awareness top of funnel stuff; there we’re talking about fame

Hero moments are about bringing your brand positioning to life, and proving you with endless ways to carve up and serve your agency’s unique and individual point of view. Not to mention they give the founder and leaders of an agency a platform to build their personal brands on, too. This is huge for those agencies where a large amount of new business is won via word-of-mouth and referrals. Hero moments give them something to talk about, and build personal and professional fame. 

Why the ownable aspect matters 

There is no point trying to get famous with something you can’t own as an agency and that’s why an ownable and original take is key. This is especially true with the rise of AI, which is very quickly going to wipe out the fodder. AI can do a lot, but what it can’t do is offer your agency an original thought. This is why a piece of research or a white paper makes for such a great piece of ‘hero moment’ content. The marketing industry loves a piece of research because it’s factual, undeniable, ownable, and authentic. It’s something your agency can hang its hat on. It’s a piece of content you can cut and present in a million different ways. It’s something you can use to garner brand awareness and fame. It’s your agency’s hero moment.  

Using hero moments to generate fame 

There are so many brands becoming famous with hero moment reports across a wide range of sectors; think Edelman’s Trust Barometer, the grandfather of hero moments, or perhaps Rubberdesk’s Flexible Office Space Report. High-quality photography, interactivity and context for their work all help these brand propositions to leap off the page.

Big and small agencies are creating hero moments just like this, and they’re seeing the benefit, too. Web development agency Rubber Cheese were able to own what great looks like in their niche sector; with a high-value benchmarking survey and research report. Their findings fuelled four international speaking opportunities, as well as an owned, in-person event and webinar series. Their hero moment has cemented them as experts in the visitor attraction sector, and new business is following.  

The importance of narrative 

A true hero moment is about more than just collecting data. It’s about building a compelling narrative that connects the dots between the data and the big picture concept. This is what generates fame and success.

Data alone is often not enough to make a truly impactful statement. Instead, it’s the narrative that truly brings your brand positioning to life, and places it in the context of something tangible and valuable to your clients and prospects. It’s the narrative that takes the report from mere data and turns it into a hero moment. By creating a narrative that’s compelling authentic and truly ownable, you can create a lasting impression that resonates with your target audience. Couple a strong narrative with a strategic campaign-led approach, and your hero moment will scale with you as you grow.  

Remember, you don’t have to be controversial to be unique 

Original thought doesn’t have to mean shaking stuff, and your hero moment doesn’t have to have to be controversial. Increasingly, agencies seem to concern themselves with the idea that they must push boundaries and be contentious. But the reality is, your hero moment won’t work if it isn’t authentic to your positioning, brand values and target audience.  

By investing in things like large-scale primary research projects, you can create something that is truly unique and memorable. And when accompanied with a robust campaign, your hero moment can deliver tangible ROI on your marketing investment. It’s also easier to measure marketing ROI on one singular campaign, because everything ladders back to it in some way regardless of which channel. So, if looking to build brand awareness and generate fame, investing in your own hero moment could be the key to success. 

Featured image: Anh Henry Nguyen / Unsplash

Claire Hutchings, Founder of Chime Agency

Claire Hutchings is an award-winning marketing consultant and Founder of Chime Agency. Claire supports agencies and consultancies to turn up the volume on their own marketing strategy.

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