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Iconic Digital - Innovator of the Year

Gold Stevie Award Winner 2016, Click to Enter The 2017 Stevie Awards for Sales and Customer service

Company: Iconic Digital, London, United Kingdom
Entry Submitted By: Awards Intelligence
Company Description: Iconic Digital is a multi-award-winning digital marketing agency, helping our global portfolio of customers succeed online. We manage all aspects of their digital strategy from search engine optimisation to social media and email marketing automation.
Nomination Category: Management Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Innovator of the Year

Nomination Title: Transforming lives through business growth

Tell the story about what this nominated person has achieved since 1 January 2016 (up to 650 words). Describe the impact he or she has had on your organization. Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms.

Steve Pailthorpe, Founder and CEO of Iconic Digital, is a born innovator with a unique approach to business best practice.

He lives by the mantra: “Transforming lives through business growth” – and as well as delivering rocket-fuelled growth for his clients, this means donating 30% of his profits to charity.

He can do so because he has embedded innovation in the company. He began with a USP that disrupted the entire UK digital marketing industry ­– guaranteeing 3:1 return on investment for each of his clients, every time. (A pledge that they will make £3 for every £1 they spend.)

2016 and 2017 have seen more landmark innovations, and the result has been phenomenal growth: turnover hit £1M for YE2017, while sales and profits are up 400% in the last three years.

In April 2016 Steve launched our Social Platform, the UK’s first "active social scheduling platform”. This is a genuine game changer in online marketing that has revolutionised the way brands take their campaigns viral. The secret of the technology is that it only posts messages to the targets’ Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts when they actively come online and check their device. Based on smart algorithms that analyse the audience, evaluate and refine results, it has boosted clients’ sales by making prospects 45% more engaged with their social media, and adds 1,000 relevant followers (real people!) every quarter.
We are also leading innovation in cyber security for ourselves and our clients.

Our brilliant tech innovations bring clients rapid, sustainable growth. An example is Shred on Site, a UK-wide secure shredding service. Their 2016-17 results included:

Growth from £2.9M to £4.4M turnover in 3 years

80% of sales leads delivered by our digital marketing.

Testimonial: “Since working with Iconic Digital, our revenues have gone through the roof. Sales continue to increase month on month and we see Iconic Digital as a key partner in our long-term success.” Adam Chandler, MD

Another 2016 innovation are Steve’s Marketing Masterclasses. Run three times a month with 50 attendees at each, they demonstrate his standing as a UK leader in digital marketing and pay for a sales pipeline because each event nets a profit of £2,500 and signs up three new clients. Attendees have included Board directors from Warner Bros., Universal, Sony, IBM and Microsoft, all won over by Steve’s passion.

He is an industry role model in inspiring his 17-strong team. In 2016 he began awarding directors’ commendations to staff whose winning ideas escalate clients’ sales, launched quarterly Vision Days and started #FunFridays – weekly lunches and monthly activity afternoons for the whole team. He does so because leading-edge technology comes from nurturing a culture of R&D excellence, team development and elite performance.

Giving an astonishing 30% of profits to charity is an incredibly bold move in business but also a unique motivator: the more Iconic Digital earns, the more Steve can give away. In 2016 he became President of Crown Global, the charity he founded in 2009. Current projects involve social regeneration, education, healthcare and water filtration in Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya, where he is working in person with the Vice President on how digital media can engender peace and democracy ahead of difficult elections. A third of giving goes to British charities such as Teenage Cancer Trust and Urban Youth Action.

Steve seeks out innovative charity projects that work in partnership with people on the ground, not taking ownership but instead empowering them. The model is sustainable rather than reliant on further donations, and what began at the grassroots is now having national impact. This mission has taken Steve to 35 countries, travelling six weeks a year. It is a critical business driver, galvanising the innovation that keeps Iconic Digital growing and giving. His goal is to donate £1M a year to good causes.

In bullet-list form, briefly summarize up to ten (10) of the chief accomplishments of this nominated person since the beginning of 2016.

-Ranked in the top 0.1% of people talking about social media and digital marketing on Twitter
-Listed 16th in the global ‘Top 100 Digital Influencers’ and named an IBM UK Futurist
-At 30, became youngest ever Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Marketors in the City of London
-Monthly engagement with 5 million individuals via social media and Klout score of 54 on Twitter – sector average is 20-30
-Staff retention 100% – and 95% retention of all repeat customers in 2016/2017
-9.8 out of 10 stars for customer service in latest client survey
-87% of clients actively referred new business in the last 12 months (the rest saying they would if they had the opportunity)
-European Business Excellence Awards winner
-Acquired key prestige client accounts including The Royal Collection and Hackett London
-2016/17 turnover hit £1 million.