VCCP appears to have taken inspiration from a Four Tops classic to name its new customer experience agency, Bernadette, a business which is designed to bridge the gap between digital strategy and the execution of digital experiences to make breakthrough products and services.
VCCP’s first dedicated customer experience agency was Stephen Francis Whitson, launched in 2005. The agency rebranded VCCP Me in 2011 following the departure of its founders and was merged into VCCP CX in 2019.
Bernadette is targeting the big digital transformation consultancies, who VCCP bosses typically lack practical execution experience, and the smaller digital execution agencies, who are typically divorced from brand purpose.
The business has been engineered to put strategy into action, with a focus on helping brands break through – whether through the design and delivery of digital products and services that truly stand apart, or helping clients break through the internal barriers standing in the way of getting there in the first place.
Bernadette launches with a commitment to bring strategy and execution together in one collaborative solution – inventing new category-leading products and services, supercharging existing ones, and activating customer engagement and advocacy with digital experiences.
In the process, the division aims to help clients speed time to market, save wasted time and money, ensure that brand purpose and impact is delivered tangibly from idea to customer touchpoint and launch truly landmark digital experiences that go the distance – across the whole digital ecosystem.
To directly underpin this commitment with their business model, Bernadette will work actively to tie its revenues directly to the desired outcomes for its client engagements – breaking the traditional rate card-based, project by project agency model.
Starting with the UK, VCCP plans to roll out Bernadette globally; the agency launches with an existing portfolio of clients including Cadbury, O2, easyJet, Kia and Saga.
With an initial team of 85 specialists from strategy, design and engineering, Bernadette is headquartered in London and led by CEO Scott Ewings, who formerly led Fjord, Ustwo and Potato in the UK, helping to establish them as digital product and venture studios.
He said: “Bernadette represents a much needed industry shake up – my team and I fundamentally believe that the digital agency model needs to change.
“There’s a lack of truly measurable success across the industry and we believe that is largely due to the gulf between the huge investment in multiple year digital transformation strategies and joined-up execution at the customer touchpoint.
“Agencies often talk a good talk about partnering with clients, but very rarely engineer their engagements in a way that everyone in the collaboration is truly invested in success. Everything we do at Bernadette has a singular focus on creating not just fit for purpose products and services for our clients, but legendary ones.”
VCCP Group chief executive officer Michael Sugden added: “VCCP’s mission is to challenge the bad habits of the industry and Bernadette is our latest example of this. For too long digital consultancies and agencies have divorced strategy from execution. We have created Bernadette to challenge this.”
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