Zandbeek is 25 years old. What is your secret?
We always tinker with our company and change something every day. These are often details, but sometimes also more structural changes. In addition, I think that we can deal with disappointments quite well and quickly turn the switch. Ultimately, the real secret lies in the fact that we look beyond marketing and communication and think along with our customers at business level.
Looking back: can you name a high and a low?
The low point is without a doubt the unexpected death of my father in 2017 (Willem van Zandbeek, founder and namesake Zandbeek, ed.). The peak followed not long after the low point, when we were assessed as the best marketing agency in the Netherlands in the MT1000 for two consecutive years and were rated ‘Office of the Year’ by our colleagues. Incidentally, we like to celebrate everything exuberantly here and normally find a new highlight every week.
How is Zandbeek doing in the current corona crisis?
My first crisis experience was the financial crisis in 2008. And of course the corona crisis is not over yet. So I speak partly from the tradition. But the common thread is: good entrepreneurship and anti-cyclical daring to think. Remain decisive, close ranks, and look to the long term.
Of course, the market is more erratic and there are all kinds of uncertainties. That is the reality and you have to deal with that. Fortunately, I can say that Zandbeek is a very healthy company and the majority of our clients seem to be limited so far. New clients also regularly report to our virtual gate. We therefore stick to our original growth target.
Where does the content marketing profession currently stand and what role does Zandbeek play in this?
Content marketing continues to grow in significance and has reached maturity. You can deduce this from the high quality of entries and winners at the last Grand Prix Content Marketing. I think the fact that Zandbeek took home six prizes is a good reflection of our position in the playing field. We are also increasingly responsible for both brand and content strategy. We like that holistic approach.
The marketing world mainly takes place in the Randstad. Is that something you as Eindhoveners run into, also in terms of new business?
I find that quite shortsighted and ironically somewhat provincial. Take the Eindhoven Greenhouse Group, which, with 500 people, is one of the largest agencies in the Netherlands. We will undoubtedly miss a customer here because we are not around. But that also applies the other way around. I think it is more a matter of mentality than geography. The fact is that a substantial part of our clients is located in the Randstad. And thanks to this crisis and the definitive breakthrough of video communication, physical distance is only becoming less relevant.