From ties to South African advertising agencies, award-winning campaigns and work for the United Nations Conference on Women, Burton’s Forty 49 is a marketing collaboration with a difference. Based in Tutbury the family run firm are well known for their specialist business support in the area and provide flexible marketing expertise which works for small and medium sized businesses across the country.
Directors Richard Barry and Mark Selby talk to Burton Small Business about the importance of getting the right mix of marketing, international successes and their South African roots.
Forty 49 has been operating in Burton for over 13 years. It was started as a family firm by Richard Barry and Mark Selby to provide marketing communications to SMEs in B2B sectors.
Our services include marketing communications strategy, brand strategy, web design & build, online business solutions such as for eLearning, social media, all design services across different media including brand identity, creative ideas for campaigns and a host of associated services that work together to bring projects to fulfilment. E.g. copywriting, photography etc.
We see ourselves as more than just a fulfilment agency in that we provide sound thinking and strategy to everything we do. We also like our client to know that they can tap in to us purely on a consultancy basis, in that we can provide strategy, planning, status updates and ongoing marketing support as a stand-alone if a client prefers to execute the project themselves. Equally, clients can rely on us to provide a complete end-to-end service.
How do you do that?
One of the most important things we do for clients is listen. To do a good job, with good results, we like to understand as much as we can about the business we are working for. Sometimes a client’s ultimate aim is not in the initial discussion and it’s up to us to find that out by asking the right questions.
To do that we use our years of experience. The core team have a deep and wide-ranging set of skills and that knowledge is used strategically to provide just the right mix of services to provide a client with what is needed to fulfil their aims.
But, what makes you different to any other marketing agency?
There are hundreds of communications, advertising and marketing agencies in the market today. Some are specialists in digital marketing, content marketing and so on, so some of what we offer you will find with them too.
What we specifically bring is a more holistic approach though. If a client approaches us with a particular aim, we are not tied to a specialism to solve it. We will look at what service or mix of services they need and provide a plan that uses them to communicate to the right market in the right place, at the right time within budget.
We see our differentiators as:
- A team that can offer big agency experience and knowledge at a more competitive price point due to our structure and location.
- A strong core team that outsources to experienced suppliers that have had excellent ongoing service with us.
- A healthy, collaborative approach to projects. We want to build ongoing relationships so we will invest the time in building that from the start.
- We can offer a full service to your marketing communications i.e. from strategy to fulfilment across most media. Everything is from one source.
- Working with one source means cost savings, but we won’t compromise on quality.
Why chose to base Forty 49 here in Burton?
Burton has an active business community that are very supportive of each other and there is a lot of support for new businesses. Just as much as it is a convenient commute for us, Burton’s excellent access routes via road or train makes it convenient for us to get to clients and us to them.
That applies to bigger businesses, and businesses who have decided to decentralise to Burton due to cost or access like Green King’s marketing HQ. This has meant that there is an increase in opportunity for agencies such as ours.
Anything else we should know about the team at Forty 49?
The team all have a lot of experience and have actually won a number of awards:
- Long before he went into business for himself, Mark won a 4 Clio Awards for magazine and newspaper advertising campaigns, a BUSca award (B2B magazine advertising campaign) and a London International award for advertising in a magazine for Castrol.
- During his career in design, Richard won a Design of the Year award from Sappi papers for the 4th United Nations Conference on Women 1995
Some other interesting facts include;
- Although they have lived here for many years, the core team all have ties to South Africa.
- Mark had worked for BBDO South Africa before coming to England over 20 years ago.
- Richard once spent 9 hours in an underground cave system.
- Mark held school ‘colours’ in athletics and rugby and played club rugby in his younger years.
- Richard hiked 26 miles recently in support of McMillan cancer research.
What is next for Forty49?
We hope that we can maintain a good equilibrium in that we maintain a size and structure that allows us time to give the best service to our clients and some really creative solutions. The aim is to keep a balance between profitability, growth through relationship building and enjoyment.
What is the one thing that you love about being a business owner?
Being a business owner can be scary and a lot of responsibility, especially during ‘rocky’ times, but the silver lining is that you are your own captain. You can figure out a way to overcome obstacles and your future is no longer at the mercy of someone else’s decision making.
The other thing is that every day is different. As a business owner you may have to wear a lot of different hats, but that means you learn a lot of new things all the time, and that means that life is never boring.
If you had to chose a favourite place to visit in Burton where would it be?
The Winery restaurant has been a favourite haunt, not only for the food, but because it is in a lovely, historic building, with a lovely garden setting leading down to the banks of the Trent river. Unless you are told, you wouldn’t know it’s there as it is right behind the town square’s parking area like a hidden surprise.
If you would like to have your business featured in the Business Spotlight then you can find out more details here including an application form and detailed questions to make it easier for you to apply.
Business Spotlight is the chance for local independent businesses to get some free publicity and share their story with the town.
From cake makers to accountants, we are looking at the people behind the business and what makes them so different and special.
Each month we will feature a different business on our website and socials giving you great exposure for your firm.