Helping to build small businesses and support entrepreneurs has always been a huge part of the Appco UK mindset.
Like most companies, we outsource some services to specialist business partners, but it is the developmental work we do with these independent companies that sets us apart from any other business.
We understand that our business partners and the people they contract are ambassadors for our clients’ brands so we take responsibility for making sure they have access to coaching on every campaign they represent to build their knowledge, hone their skills and spark their passion.
It’s a win-win situation: it not only ensures a high level of quality control, it also enables the companies we partner with to grow by ensuring they deliver the best service possible.
Redline Promotions in Manchester is our newest business partner, and we spoke to owner Chance Cowie (pictured left) about how he launched his own marketing company, how he works with Appco UK, and what support the company gives him now.
Cutting to the chase, how did you end up in direct sales?
I spent three years working in tourism promotions in Tenerife, driving round the island on a moped and making good money. It was great, but it wasn’t going to be a career, so I decided to come back to England just before Christmas last year.
I knew a guy who’d worked in direct sales and had his own company that was sub-contracted by Appco UK. He was really positive about it and suggested I get involved, so I thought I’d give it a go. I started contracting to his company in late January.
How did you find it?
In my first week I sort of overcomplicated things, thinking “no, there must be some hidden thing in this industry for people to succeed”.
But I went home that weekend and thought about how potential customers and donors responded and realised that the best plan was just to keep things simple: provide people with all the information, and help them understand the charity’s work is so important. After that, the ball got rolling and I started doing well.
And now, eight months later, you’ve launched your own company…
I actually worked my way up pretty quickly, and a big part of that was bringing in other fundraisers who had the same commitment to the charities we represent and great “customer” service. Eventually, that led to having a team of contractors who came with me when I set up my own company, which opened in October this year.
Appco UK’s support also helped ensure I had really competent and passionate fundraisers working alongside me when I launched Redline Productions. Now it’s up to me to maintain that.
So, what kind of support did – and does – Appco UK provide?
Appco UK is focused on delivering successful campaigns for its clients, so they make sure the suppliers they use to help them have access to complete training and support. This not only helps ensure fundraisers – like me just one year ago – have loads of knowledge of the charity they’re speaking about, but it also builds your enthusiasm and helps keep you motivated.
You learn pretty quickly that it’s important to Appco UK that the companies they use maintain really high standards – both for their own reputation and the reputation of their clients.
The same support and training Appco UK offered me as an independent contractor, is available to me now as a business owner. I’m frequently talking to the Appco UK team to share my feedback “from the field” on what’s working and where we can improve campaigns, and the team there couldn’t be more willing to help me when I need it.
Was being a business owner something you always aspired to?
Not so much in terms of being in charge, but maybe in the sense of leadership. I have always enjoyed helping other people grow and achieve their goals, and as a business owner I get to do that.
I understand the position and challenges of every person who contracts with my business because I did the exact same thing. I like that I can offer advice, from my own personal experience, on how to be successful in this industry, but I also love that they have the freedom to do it their way.