The Audacious Agency
Name: Lauren Clemett & Annette Densham
Location: Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
International award-winning entrepreneurs Annette Densham & Lauren Clemett have over 50 years combined experience in brand management and journalism, working with leading agencies and media brands. Annette specialises in storytelling and publicity, Lauren is an expert in Neurobranding and personal branding.
We work with business owners and entrepreneurs who are sick of being the world’s best-kept secret, helping you to promote yourself professionally so you can boldly stand out from the competition, charge what you are worth, and be the sought-after, leader in your space.
What products/services do you offer?
Together our core skills create a seamless service from the refinement of your brand through to publicity, awards, book marketing and online authority, with marketing action plans that give you the confidence to expose your business in the right way, to the right people, with the right message.
These are delivered via our books, online programs, Group Coaching, 1:1 personalised mentoring, and the Audacious Audit which delivers bespoke strategy development
Why did you start your business and how long have you been running it?
Laurens business started in 2010 and Annettes in 2013, but we orbited each other for years, referring clients to each other. In 2016 Annette, an award-winning judge, challenged Lauren to enter an international Stevie Award (the ‘Oscars’ of business) and she won!
After that they teamed up to help others enter, win and leverage awards, traveling to New York to collect armfuls of awards with businesswomen from all over Australia and NZ. It was a no-brainer to get together and combine our expertise – The Audacious Agency was born in early 2020.
What struggles do you think most businesses face in your industry and what would you say they need to do to overcome them?
In the 1970’s the brain was exposed to around 500 branded messages a day. Today that’s closer to 5,000!
It is almost too easy these days to start your own TV channel, radio or magazine as a YouTube, Podcast or Blog. People are creating content like crazy, but its all just adding to the noise.
To stand out and get noticed is incredibly difficult – we know, and we are in the business of it! The secret is to get 100% clap on what you want to be known for and then create a strategy so you can not only create engaging content that resonates, but repurpose it so you become Googleicious.
What has been your greatest accomplishment?
We have been honoured with no less than three International Grand Stevie awards for there body of awards we have helped submit. For a small agency like us, going up against big corporate brands and to win is pretty humbling.
What has been your biggest ‘fail’ so far?
Taking so long to get ourselves together and get our systems, processes and programs sorted. It’s so much easier to do it for others…we have the luxury of standing on the outside looking in. We think of it as ironocide – it’s like the plumber with the leaky tap and ironic that we are the worst at promoting and marketing ourselves.
What do you love most about your business?
The amazing people we get to help! We would not have won those awards without the large number of business people trusting us to help them tell their stories. We get to meet and help promote the most incredibly humans, do the most extraordinary things.
What do you find most challenging?
Both Annette and Lauren have had their fair share of health issues and juggling business and life is always going to be challenging, but also that both founders are creative and tend to shy away from systems has made us step-up on technology to automate many things.
Saying no is also not in our DNA, and we have learned to discuss ideas and opportunities first, then decide what needs our focus and what can be put aside until we have time.
How do you promote your business (please include as many details as you can)?
We are the self promotion specialists, so we practice what we preach. We know where our ideal clients hang out and when, and what they are looking for. So you will find us frequently on Facebook, adding value to groups and on LinkedIn sharing articles, commentary, opinion pieces and inspiration. We are also regular speakers at live and online events, running webinars and workshops, as well as being interviewed in the media, blogging guests and on podcasts. We have a marketing action plan and key dates each year for social events (such as the Women In Business Stevie Awards) and repurpose much of what we create.
What business skills do you have (eg. graphic design, customer service)?
Lauren is a certified graphic designer and marketer, having worked for over 30 years in the branding space, within world leading advertising agencies and corporates. Annette is a journalist and content creation machine having worked for 30 years within leading media companies, newspapers and corporates.
Additional to this we are both born leaders and entrepreneurs, with tenacity and positivity in buckets.
What software did you/your designer use to create your website (eg. WordPress, Wix)?
We use Thrive Themes on WordPress, along with Thrive Apprentice for our members area. We also use Active Campaign to run our automations and sales funnels.
What are some of your favourite business tools and apps?
Google, Acuity, Grammarly, Zoom, Canva, Monday…so many to name!
What do you like about your website?
We love the inspiration most people get from it and we are still combining our old business pages into the one site, which of course is taking longer than we’d like it to.
What lessons have you learnt during your time as an entrepreneur?
That being an entrepreneur means you have bright-shiny-objectitis and that you need to say no to most opportunities so you can focus on doing what you do best.
Also that you need to partner with the right people. You will know they are right because there is natural fit, and you can have ‘cards of the table’ discussions without getting personal. Its also vital that you have fun, enjoy working together and drive each other forward.
What key tips for success in business would you like to share with others?
Plan, set goals and have a strategy.
Even if it changes, at least you have a roadmap and a system to follow.
If you are not 100% sure about what you are doing, how do you expect your prospective clients to think of you?
Perception is everything and your reputation in the marketplace is gold, you need to do what you say and love your brand.
What is the one thing that you want everyone to take away from this post?
That it doesn’t need to be perfect before you launch and to never wait until ‘everything is perfect’ before getting started. You have the most amazing gifts and talents the world needs, so don’t hid away – there is no place for modesty and business!