Consultancy and intermediary GO! off to flying start in the North

18 July 2019 3 min. read
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A consulting and intermediary firm in the digital marketing and advertising landscape run by brothers Gareth and Russell Oakley has booked strong growth since launching just over a year ago. To accommodate its growth, GO! is moving into a larger office in Manchester.

The Oakley brothers both have extensive experience in the space, and have combined their expertise to establish GO!. Russell Oakley previously spent more than 10 years working for agency Rapport in Manchester, The Moment (a content marketing agency) and Scorch (a creative agency) in London. Earlier in his career, Russell worked as a ports journalist for various radio and television broadcasters and print publishers across the North of England. 

His older brother Gareth Oakley, meanwhile, has a background in sales & marketing and business development at staffing firms, having served recruitment firms Adam Recruitment and PageGroup for over twelve years. He started his career in France, at Decathlon, and then went on to serve a leading transportation & hospitality business in a sales & marketing role.

Together, the duo aim to improve the way brands and agencies operate their digital marketing and advertising spend, with a focus on clients in the North. “The way brands work with agencies has significantly shifted in recent times. Brand leaders are under more scrutiny and faced with more choice than ever before,” explained Gareth Oakley. “In many cases, brands are becoming increasingly frustrated by the traditional agency model.”

The GO Network

“Yet, when I asked key stakeholders [in digital marketing and advertising] why they weren’t making a change,” he continued, “their response was either that they couldn’t cut through the noise, so they didn’t know where to start, or they simply didn’t have the time to invest in the process.” And so GO! was born. “We have developed a model which offers a new way of working to both parties.”

With brands, GO! works on a consultancy basis to first assess the business' needs. The consultants then provide guidance on projected agency spend and budgets and act as a knowledge point to make sure that spend is maximised through the partnership. “We help our clients ensure that budgets for marketing execution remain uncompromised and efficient.” 

On behalf of clients, including the likes of Betfred, Levi’s, and Zuto, GO! has since launching some twelve months ago placed over £8 million of briefs to agencies. “The model works because we really put the time and care into truly understanding the challenges each organisation faces and what they look for in agency partners,” explained co-founder Russell Oakley. Around 65 agencies across Manchester, Liverpool and Leeds now are represented by GO!, which has grown its team to ten professionals.

The offering towards agencies focuses on helping them optimise their own business development and internal operations. Acting as consultants, Gareth and Russell Oakley work with agency leaders to create a differentiated strategy. They then look to transform their business development pipeline by aligning the needs of the brands with propositions. “The aim is to refine agency fit and to drive growth.”