Convince & Convert is a top-tier, boutique digital marketing agency with clients as notable as Oracle, Hilton, Adidas, 3M, and the United Nations. For the past 10 years, the company has been helping businesses develop their brands, social media strategies, and content marketing strategies using leading-edge techniques. Their position as thought leaders in the marketing technology industry has also put them in demand for content-driven educational events around the world.
Founder Jay Baer is one of the most-retweeted digital marketing experts in the field. He chose Teamwork back in 2014 to support advanced planning for Convince & Convert’s entire project list, from individual campaigns to keynote presentations in landmark conferences.
In the years before Jay discovered Teamwork, his team of two employees and several contractors had been collaborating using one of the leading project management platforms available: Basecamp. While it was a huge improvement over the scattered notes and Post-It reminders that they had been using, they were still running into significant limitations.
As the business expanded, they discovered that they needed software that allowed them to plan a project backward, starting with the date of their event and working backward to the present day. Basecamp allowed them to start at the present day and work toward a deadline in the future, but that didn’t help them set intermediate deadlines for multiple presentations.
"For example, I had a presentation at the United Nations in Rome, and my team and I knew the date of the presentation three days before I had to speak. Even though I was using project management software, I had to calculate the timelines for all of the subtasks needed by hand and then enter them Basecamp. That was a lot of wasted time."
With so many long-distance trips, Jay was also finding it difficult to maintain workflow momentum by scheduling important phone calls, webinars, and meetings, plus providing crucial feedback to his team. Even when he checked into Basecamp, it often took too long to review what had been accomplished and what tasks were at the top of the priority list.
"I travel about 50 percent of the time, and it was difficult to plan my working days and travel days into the workflows with Basecamp.”
After giving Basecamp feedback about Convince & Convert’s needs, they realized that the platform was not going to change, so they started looking around for other software. A Google search pointed Jay toward Teamwork, and after a demo, the entire team was brought on board.
"My team was up and running with Teamwork in no time. We didn’t have a super complicated instance of Basecamp, but the transition was AMAZING. Down time was non-existent, so we didn’t lose billable hours or have to delay our deadlines as we were learning the software.”
Since working backward from project deadlines was their greatest need, they used the task list template feature to standardize their checklists and timelines so they could instantly create a project as soon as they accepted a speaking engagement.
Every to-do is listed and scheduled from sending Jay’s biography, creating publicity materials, and sending the host their requirements for audio-visual equipment.
"Teamwork automatically schedules and assigns all the tasks working backward from the date of the presentation. It’s like having a built-in assistant that remembers all of my preferences and due dates for any project."
All files and comments are stored with each task so comments and documents are easy to find for in-house team members or contractors working across the globe.
"The notifications for all of the deadlines and progress updates are terrific, and I love the balance between extensive features and the easy-to-use format. It’s all very relevant and easy to understand."
Almost four years later, Jay’s team has thoroughly integrated the platform’s tools into their workflows and the two are nearly inseparable. The efficiencies they’ve discovered have given Convince & Convert more time to focus on their task list instead of worrying about how they are going to get everything done each week.
"At this point, I cannot imagine having to go back to using other project management tools. Our workdays would be a disaster-filled collection of Post-It notes, missed deadlines, and heartbreak."
Having such complete organizational and project management tools has allowed the company to reach unprecedented levels of growth and success. Since adopting Teamwork, Convince & Convert has grown 1,000% and was named to the Inc. 5000 list in 2015.
During that phase of nearly unbridled growth, Teamwork was not only able to help Jay’s team stay in command, but it allowed them to scale quickly using automated, replicable practices. Today, each team member has their own favorite features and uses them to increase collaboration.
"Teamwork consistently exceeds my expectations. It has totally changed the way our business works, and I can’t fathom how we used to get by without it!"