Jan 9, 2020
Greg Keating is Agency Operations Manager and Business Development Lead at Hangar12, a fully remote, digital marketing agency that has been in Greg’s family in one form or another for 3 generations, and transitioned from brick-and-mortar to fully remote in 2015.
After a college internship his father arranged at what is today Hangar12 (No, thank you!), Greg started his career in production supply chain management, doing supply chain and marketing analytics, and “proving himself” in massive companies (Coca-Cola and Ecolab). His father, Kevin, again tapped him a few years ago. What to do?
Greg’s father, Kevin, whose original career choice had been to work in Parks and Recreation in Irvine, California, likewise, had been tapped by his father in 1988 (Greg’s grandfather had joined the agency in 1981). Greg’s father joined the agency and worked there for 12 years before he purchased it in 2000.
Granddad worked there, Dad owned it . . . Greg took a second look, and, amazed at how far the agency had come – from the in-store shopper marketing cardboard cutouts he saw when he was growing up to today’s digital and social media marketing – and fell in love.
Hangar12, renamed 1n 2012 in honor of his grandfather’s WWII Air Force service, is somewhat Chicago-centric, but staff are located throughout the Midwest. The agency provides consumer packaged goods clients in the food and beverage space with a consumer-first approach, in-house creative teams, omnichannel activations, and a focus on measurement.
What makes Hangar12 great? Greg believes the remote business model enables his team to deliver “quality marketing campaigns faster than anyone else,” utilizing digital, social media, consumer promotions, and shopper marketing. And LOTS of video. Remote employees work when they feel they can be most productive (which improves efficiency) and log their time on daily timesheets, “meeting,” as needed, by phone or email. Getting campaigns running fast makes for happy clients and reduces the delay in marketing effort revenue recognition.
Greg notes that ecommerce and the rise of Amazon have challenged brick-and-mortar retailers to stock new brands and unknown products, even before a full marketing plan is in place. Why would stores do this? Brick-and-mortar businesses, especially grocery stores, having been stagnant area for so long, are now scrambling to find the next “hot item,” to get on the “front end” of a trend, to stock a product before the competition does, or, even, to become an exclusive vendor for a “unicorn” product. Once a start-up’s product is “on the shelves,” stores are demanding that these brands “prove” that they are putting in the marketing effort that justifies the placement . . . which is when the startup brand goes looking for what Hangar12 can do.