thenetworkone newsletter: Coronavirus updates
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Residents, nurses and children release balloons carrying messages during a church service at a nursing home in Tiefenort,Germany

Webinar Wednesdays: Working with start-ups, with Rene Fischer
20th May, 08:00 NY / 13:00 UK / 14.00 CET / 20.00 HK

Tune in on 20th May for our next Webinar Wednesday: Working with start-ups.

Many agencies want to work with start ups - but not everyone knows what they actually need. Their approach to business is different from traditional agency clients, which calls for reinvention from their agencies. To work with start ups, agencies need to transform their: 

  • workflow
  • attitude towards creativity and testing
  • formats of delivering results, and more...

In this webinar, we'll examine how start-ups are different and how agencies can successfully win their business. Even if you're not planning to work with start-ups, these skills are useful for all clients. 

The webinar will be led by Rene Fischer, co-Founder and Strategist at Synthesis Consulting: a group of hyper-specialised companies that support organisations going through a strategic transformation process, and working with entrepreneurs breaking away to form new ventures. 
His early career was at Brainstore and TBWA in Switzerland but, finding this a little lacking in adventure, he emigrated to the Baltic states in 2001. Rene has had roles as Creative Director, Strategy Director and Founder of agencies in Europe, the Baltics and the Middle East. Learn more about Rene Fischer's professional history here.

Sign up here:

thenetworkone Webinar Wednesdays: Future webinars

Here's the schedule for future Webinar Wednesdays

  • Wednesday June 3rd:  “Where agency new business really comes from”– with Spencer Gallagher, Co-Founder and Joint CEO, Cactus and author of Agencynomics, UK, presents research from his global new business survey with findings from 38 countries. Because new client business is something we all need right now.
  • Wednesday June 10th: “Integrative Thinking: or, how to become a genius” – with Marsha Lindsay, CEO and Founder, Lindsay Foresight and Stratagem in Madison, Wisconsin. Agencies need to understand how clients’ needs are changing, to keep their place on agency rosters. Register now

We had a record-breaking number of registrations for Bill McGowan's excellent Webinar Wednesday: The first seven seconds, held on Wednesday 13th May. If you missed it, you can watch it on our YouTube channel (video expiring Wednesday 20th May):

Unfortunately, for family health reasons, Paddy Loughman will be unable to deliver his webinar on Wednesday 27th May. We will announce a replacement webinar by Wednesday this week, by email and on our website

Thenetworkone's 'Webinar Wednesdays' are designed especially for independent agency leaders and everyone is welcome. In the spirit of COVID-19 collaboration and knowledge sharing, all webinars are free of charge and will be broadcast via Zoom. Please see below for more free content.

Free webinars and content

Many other companies have also kindly committed to sharing their knowledge, expertise and assets online during the COVID-19 crisis. Mark your diaries for the following free webinars coming up this week:

Covid-19: two charts that explain a lot

We heard a webinar this week by Professor Sir David Spiegelhalter, a statistician from Cambridge University. One of these charts (showing UK) is his, and the other (showing UK and other European countries ) comes from The Economist.
A great deal of confusion is arising from Government figures showing infection rates, cases and numbers of death from Covid-19, in different countries.
Each country collects data differently and many countries only test a skewed sample of people (like: people in hospitals, or reporting symptoms to doctors). So they do not know how many people have (or have already had) the disease.
Also, each country reports differently on how many people have died from Covid-19. Some report deaths only in hospitals. Some report all deaths of people who had Covid-19, even if it was not the main cause of death. Many do not include people whose death was caused indirectly because of Covid-19: for example, people who were not treated for other conditions, for fear of going to hospital and catching Covid-19, or had appointments cancelled.
So most reporting is unreliable.
However, all developed countries do keep accurate records of the total number of people dying each week. If we look at the total number of people dying in any given week, compared to the average number over many years: the picture is much clearer. The “excess” deaths can be attributed to Covid-19.
See for yourself:

By the time you read this, the numbers will have changed as new data is published daily. But now you know what to look for.

Restructuring your agency

Doug Baxter (L) & Brian Curran (R), Agency Futures

Separately from our Wednesday webinars, we are also working on a program of smaller online workshops, covering practical issues of agency ownerships and leadership.
The first will be a session on restructuring an agency.
Almost every agency has put in place temporary cost-reduction measures, to survive the Covid-19 crisis. But restructuring means more than cost-cutting.
It means cutting unnecessary costs – people, processes and overheads – at the same time as introducing new ways of working, which will be better designed for the post-Covid business and technology environment.
The workshop has been developed exclusively for independent agency owners, by Doug Baxter and Brian Curran of Agency Futures. It will be free and self-contained, but invitation-only.
Details will be announced later this week, but please feel free to register your interest now, by emailing  

New business advice during lockdown


Working life has been turned upside down by the COVID-19 pandemic and much has been written about this over the last few weeks. New business development agency, Alchemis, has decided to look at home working and its impact on marketing decision makers and their receptiveness to talk to and meet (albeit virtually) potential new agency partners. Their data compares the period of lockdown versus the average of the preceding 12 years as a whole. You can read the full analysis on their website.

Mower: A new comfort zone

What will life look like after COVID-19? Will people head to the office as soon as stay-at-home orders ease? Possibly. Take a round-the-world trip? Maybe not.
Independent US agency, Mower, polled 1,000 U.S. adults to learn how long they plan to wait to resume a laundry list of common pursuits once the experts deem it safe to do so in the wake of COVID-19. Click here to read their findings. 

Strategic Objectives named IABC/Toronto Agency of the Year

Last Thursday night, IABC/Toronto staged its annual (but first-ever virtual) OVATION Awards Gala, celebrating the best PR campaigns of the year. We'd like to wish huge congratulations to Strategic Objectives upon being named PR Agency of the Year 2020 for the 8th time in the last 11 years! They also won a whopping 17 OVATIONs, including seven Awards of Excellence in categories ranging from social media to social good. Click here to learn more about Strategic Objectives' victory. 

Quiz: Do you know how to lead in a crisis?



If you're a business leader, current events may have led you to question how your instincts and leadership style compares to those in your position. Quartz have developed a 30-second quiz which shows how your transformation management style stacks up to other industry leaders. To take the quiz, click here. They've also published a report from Brightline which explores how successful organisations lead in transformative times. Click here to download.

Shanghai Disneyland reopens 

Disneyland in Shanghai has begun to welcome visitors once again, but not without new safety rules in place. The New York Times reports that these include temperature checks conducted on ticket holders upon their arrival, obligatory face masks for guests, no theatre shows or fireworks and purple social-distancing mats to prevent bunching while waiting in line. Although it's far from what we're used to, it does inspire confidence that such businesses will continue to exist in a post-coronavirus world. Click here to read the article.

Love in the time of coronavirus: dating apps buck the downward ad spend trend

Whilst household, legacy brands are slashing ad spend, dating apps are seeing a surge. This is unsurprising, as thousands around the world are suck in lockdown, maybe feeling lonely and definitely with time to search for 'The One'. Some savvy brands have seen this as an opportunity for in-app advertising. OkCupid's CMO notes: “One thing that is super exciting is the interest that OkCupid has seen from brands wanting to reach our daters and advertise with us.” Click here to read on.

"Fooled Brittania" - did only 12% of the population stay alert during the PM's speech?    

What can a Finnish politician tell us about communication, and the likelihood for misunderstanding? His theories over the systemic challenges facing all communication were all on display by the British Prime Minister on Sunday night, and then by his cabinet over the coming days. Jim James, Managing Director of EASTWEST PR, examines why Boris Johnston's speech was so confusing, through the lens of "Wiio's law". Click here to read the interesting article, which is helpful for all communicators. (Please note: this is a professional observation, not a political comment!) 

Please note: Views expressed in third-party content are not necessarily those of thenetworkone or its employees.