How did you select R2i as your solution partner?
It was actually my former boss who was responsible for that process. She’s no longer here. I honestly I don’t remember. I assume that it was through professional reference. She was really active in networking events and things of that nature.
Could you describe the scope of the project in terms of components: did it include design, development, support, training, etc.?
As I mentioned, they helped us evaluate and then develop our digital real estates. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. were all a part of that. For our space, LinkedIn was crucial. They helped us map out the different personas using LinkedIn. They conducted the research in order to find out where we needed to fit in, either by leveraging groups that already existed or by recommending that we create a group that doesn’t exist. The pushed us to be more consistent with our content development and to be more selective with our channels.
I’ve worked with a number of digital vendors and I would say that they’re by far the best when it comes to being proactive and really utilizing all of the leading strategies. It’s not me asking or telling them things. It’s really them coming to us with the solution and mapping it out for us. That’s not something I’ve always seen with some of the different web partners we’ve had.
Could you give me a sense of the size of the initiative either in monetary terms or the number of personnel that were delegated to the project on R2i side?
Again, I think it’s grown over the years and even this year -- I would say it’s grown probably 20 percent each year. Right now, I think we have at least five or six full time, not full time, but consultants that I consider leads within their respective areas, whether it’s user experience designs, web analytics experts, digital strategists, etc.
I’ve had several conversations with our project manager where she said, “Hey, I pulled in this team member and these kind of experts.” It really feels like they have the brainpower in-house. They don’t outsource anything. I would say between five and eight of their key consultants have been on our account. They always turn things around really quickly. They’re really good about mapping out and managing our expectations as far as time lines and minor objectives.
I also like the way that they structure contracts. Again, I have a few, probably upwards of ten contracts with different vendors. And they don’t nickel and dime me when it comes down to it. You really map out the expectations and the goals of the different campaigns. And essentially, I think within reason, obviously, pending no major disasters, they just go above and beyond to get it done.
I realize your relationship and this initiative is ongoing, but when were the primary components of the project completed?
It would have been the fall of 2009.