A personal note from Kristin Zhivago

This is how I define branding:

“Branding is the promise that you make. Your brand is the promise that you keep.”

As your company’s leader, you have five tools to work with to keep your promises:

  • Products and services
  • People
  • Passion
  • Policies
  • Processes

Improving processes can make you rich

I’ve helped hundreds of CEOs and business owners—the ones who are not jerks—increase their revenue as a revenue coach. I found that all of these company leaders:

  • Produce products and services that are competitive
  • Have intelligent, dedicated people who want to do a good job
  • Are passionate about what they’re doing, and want to excel
  • Come up with decent policies because they are decent people
  • Are trying to create excellent results with sub-par processes

When Jeff Bezos first founded Amazon, I was running a high-tech agency with my husband in Silicon Valley. Seeing what Bezos was doing, I thought to myself: This is the first high-tech company whose product was not a product at all, but a process. Bezos is building a customer-centric infrastructure.

That is precisely why Bezos is one of the world’s richest company founders. Amazon continues to set the standard for “making it easy for customers to buy.”

A sensible, scalable structure.

By the time I founded Zhivago Partners in July 2017, I knew I was going to follow the Bezos model and focus on infrastructure. The first person I hired was an infrastructure manager (I also referred to her as our “app whisperer,” because I knew our entire company would run on the cloud). We built the structure that we still use to this day:

The Core Infrastructure Team works directly with clients, helps me run the business, builds new policies and processes; recruits, hires, and trains new team members, and makes solid business decisions.

The Digital Campaign Team consists of experts in specific digital marketing channels, which demand a laser-focused specialization to keep up with the many changes built into each type of channel.

They are small business people in their own right, have meaningful and productive conversations with clients, and work jointly with clients to make the right decisions about the appropriate approach for each campaign. They constantly optimize the campaigns to increase click-through rates, engagement, and conversions.

For B2B companies the conversions can include downloading materials, engaging in a live chat or email conversation, or requesting a quote.

The Creative and Technical Team includes developers, writers, designers, quality assurance, and research professionals. They specialize in their particular area. Writers, designers, and developers are assigned to specific accounts to make sure that whatever they produce fits beautifully into the client’s brand, style, and campaign goals.

Developers gain thorough knowledge of each client’s site structure and other technical resources, leading to efficient additions and fixes.

Researchers (including those specializing in keyword/SEO research), QA experts, and influencer professionals work for several clients and use tested processes and tools to achieve success for clients.

Personally, I consider it my job to make Zhivago Partners “a safe place for nice people to work,” which results in a very loyal and dedicated workforce. We all care about each other and we all care about our clients.

When you’re looking for the right agency for your company, it’s important to ask how the agency is structured.

Quite often, the founder started out as a specialist in one of the digital marketing or creative specialties, then built the business. What is missing is a deep understanding of how an agency must be structured so that clients are never left wondering—or worrying.

There isn’t another agency in the world run by an experienced revenue coach who has helped literally hundreds of companies grow their revenues by making it easier for their customers to buy and managing their companies more successfully. I’ve applied all the lessons I’ve learned to the structure and running of Zhivago Partners. Our agency is built to benefit you; to give you want you need and want; and to make increasing your revenue a satisfying experience.

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