Not Our Customer

It’s safe to say that “Not Our Customer” was one of the more unusual campaigns of the year. Why would we take pride in naming businesses that weren’t our customers? There’s method in our madness.


Big businesses are Not Our Customer

FBA is an agency that’s designed to help SMEs specifically. Typically, these businesses have a turnover of £5m to £50m. If you’re in that category, you don’t need us to tell you that you have very different resources to the household names listed in “Not Our Customer”. You don’t have the same budget, the same staff or the same resources. You’re probably not trying to reach the same sort of customer either.

And yet the best practice advice you hear probably tells you how Aviva’s new marketing campaign achieved great results – as if that has any relevance to you.

We do things differently. We’ve always understood the SME community. We’ve always worked in it. Let us act as your interpreters, taking best practice from enterprises and developing it into something that’s useful for you. As an example, take a look at our treatment of Binet & Field’s “The Long and the Short of It”. Although it’s a study of big business advertising, it contains useful lessons for SMEs (and a few problems too).


What do we do for businesses who are our customers?

Our range of marketing services includes digtial marketing but extends far beyond it.

  • marketing automation on websites so you have the information you need to send the right information to the right people at the right time.
  • chatbots to help visitors find their way around your website and tell you what interests them.
  • and yes, digital topics like website search optimisation (SEO).
  • long-term brand-building to put you firmly in the minds of your future customers.
  • lead-generation to boost revenue.
  • account-based marketing to help you focus on and land big customers.
  • email marketing programmes that work automatically to generate leads and strengthen your relationship with customers or prosects.
  • an effective strategy to avoid you being pulled from pillar to post by day-to-day events.
  • research that reveals your position in the market (and what you need to do about it).
  • online or face-to-face events to promote your business and your messages to wider audiences.
  • tools, techniques and training to help you develop your own marketing department so you don’t have to rely on agencies like us.



Not Our Customer in brand building

The “Not Our Customer” campaign is also an example of us practising what we preach – or eating our own dog food as a wise man once said. This is our brand-building campaign. It’s not designed to generate leads. It’s not there to persuade you to pick up the phone and call us. That’s why we’ve included contact details but not a pushy call-to-action like “Phone Now”.

Its purpose is to gently associate our name with marketing for local businesses. It’s aimed at the 85% of businesses in our region – they’re the ones who are not looking for a new marketing agency at the moment. The goal is that when you do need an agency, ours is one of the names that will come to mind.


Not Our Customer as ‘surprisingly familiar’

It’s also designed around one of the most successful advertising formulae of recent years: “surpringly familar“.

Advertising that works tends to combine two attributes:

  1. it has something familiar that catches the eye because it’s instantly recognisable. In “Not Our Customer”, the familiarity comes from the household names we cite.
  2. it has something surprising that sparks a reaction because it’s unexpected. In “Not Our Customer”, the surprise comes from us saying that we don’t do business with these names. Claiming big names as customers is as boring as it is irrelevant.