Welcome to ArCompany

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Almost four months ago, I came to a cross-roads in my career.

Having just left yet another start-up that had tons of promise but eventually began to show signs of waning, it was pretty evident that the frustration I had encountered in the last 7 years in the social media business was coming to a head.

I didn’t understand why companies didn’t get it. I didn’t understand why companies were treating social media as merely a campaign channel and nothing more. I didn’t understand why companies were ok with complacency and didn’t feel the urgency to change their ways.

Social media has proven that it’s a medium that’s not going away. Its prevalence has paved the way for pundits’ warning of the inevitable death of marketing.

Today, it’s not a do or die situation, but soon it will be. When I decided to blaze my own path, I sat down to figure out what I wanted to do. Below is my “letter to myself”.


I owe a lot to my trip to Dachis’ Social Business Summit in NY. My time there contributed greatly to this journey. It was also part soul-searching, part anger and sheer will that ArCompany came to be.

As I write this it’s becoming much clearer as to why I need to venture down this path.

Operationalizing social is going to be an inevitable reality. And the more I speak to people the more I realize that it may not necessarily be a hard sell after all.

The concept itself is harrowing but many companies may have already gone down the road of implementing it in one form or another.

What are the drivers of this eventuality of Social Business?

  • An unstable world economy that results in business flux and move towards developing efficiencies. This, in turn, affects the job market and the resource constraints that are put upon businesses.

  • Product saturation/abundance was bourne in an age of mass production and mass communication. These days, the opposite is true. Enter Mass customization that’s given rise to increased customer service.

  • Technology has also splintered communications which has changed from a one-way to two-way channel. Up until just over a decade ago, the voice of the consumer was but a whisper. Nowadays it’s being heard loud and clear.

  • In the past, the value between a company and its customers was based on transaction history. A true value has emerged that includes customer relationships and behaviours outside of the organization and provides him/her with a stronger voice that the company must heed.

  • One way static communication has changed to an interactive two-way dialogue.

  • This dialogue has drastically increased this well of data/information that has the ability to radically inform and provide more  power in decision-making

However, companies, for the most, part are not ready. They don’t have the ability nor forethought to recognize the value of the data.

Companies are not ready to shape their processes and structure around this information to properly receive, manage and analyze and action on it (in the appropriate timeframes)–all in an effort to mitigate reputational impacts, to capitalize on potential revenue streams, and to reduce customer churn.

Dave Gray of Dachis said it best:

Social Business means…. having to dismantle some of that precious infrastructure

It can be done

It seems like a daunting feat but what companies don’t realize is that we don’t have to reinvent the wheel. While some fundamental mindshifts need to happen, solutions to deal with this slew of information has not radically changed.The same principals and models still apply.

The difference is how to deal with the information in its abundance and the speed at which it is moving and in its unstructured form.

What the market needs…

I need to form a company that will help companies move to that eventual next level. There remains a huge education gap when it comes to social. Many have not totally bought into the promise of social. Their implementations are weak and non-committal.

In the meantime, information and intelligence technology (to make sense of this information) is moving at a faster pace. Those companies that can adapt and leverage this information to their benefit will be ahead of the curve.

In the short term, they will be the drivers of change. They will show the world what it means to really listen and understand their customer. They will show the world how to succeed by bridging these gaps, elevating the  relationship with their customers and focusing resources in driving to market needs and expectations.

Here’s what we will do:

  • We evolve businesses for the inevitable and use data to drive validation and make smart decisions;

  • We show business how to evolve at their own pace;

  • We educate and train on best practices and how to manage and foster relationships at each customer touch point;

  • We introduce technology within the framework of the customer relationship: collaboration, workflow, business intelligence, content and community mapping;

  • We analyze initiatives to validate implementations and strategies, and ensure they map to business objectives.

We’ve arrived

So here we are,  February 2013.  ArCompany has arrived. We named it so because “arc” shows steady momentum and progression. Taken together with “company” it sounds like “Our Company”. The next generation of business will have accountability to the customer– at all levels of the organization.

And I couldn’t ask for a better team to take this journey with me: They are all stellar in their own right:

  • Danny Brown, a truly amazing friend who has shown me on more than one occasion how to truly live with integrity;
  • Amy Tobin, a spunky and energetic pal who continues to challenge me and make me smile in the process;
  • Andrew Jenkins, someone I’ve come to respect for his perseverance and undeniable insight from the enterprise world.

We all live social… everyday. We understand and are passionate about the connected customer. We inherently know how this is going to impact business now and in the long-term.

We look forward to having the conversation. Join us!

 Reference for some of this material sourced from the Social Business Journal, September 2012

Photo source: mgifford

CEO at ArCompany, and a seasoned digital strategist having held management positions for top Ad Agencies including Ogilvy, Rapp Collins, ONE and Isobar Digital. She also has extensive start-up experience with launch successes like Yahoo! Answers. Hessie is the co-author of EVOLVE: Marketing (as we know it) is Doomed! She is also an active writer for Huffington Post, and Steamfeed.

65 thoughts on “Welcome to ArCompany

  1. samfiorella says:

    Congrats! Sounds like an exciting new venture!

  2. ryancox says:

    Absolutely love it. Just love it.

  3. ShellyKramer says:

    Congratulations one and all! So excited for this new adventure.

  4. ExtremelyAvg says:

    It sounds like you got a firm grasp of where you need to go. I think you’ll do well. Good luck with ARC Company.

  5. Well, this is very exciting! Should you ever need anything, you know where to find me. :)

  6. Ldillonschalk says:

    There is a real need for corporate help towards creating social brands.  Great letter to yourself and clarity on what you can offer.  I look forward to seeing, reading, tweeting more.

    • hessiej says:

      Ldillonschalk Laurie, thanks! This next step is about companies doing it right. I sense the frustration even on this side of the fence. I know we can make a difference.

  7. DoctorJones says:

    Love the passion.  You know I’m a big fan of everyone on the team.  Looking forward to big things.

  8. jenniferwindrum says:

    Very exciting you guys…and those you will help. An awesome team. Go get ’em.

  9. AmyMccTobin says:

    “Spunky” is a much nicer way of describing me than what comes out of the mouths of my friends :)  A very, very exciting day!

  10. Erin F. says:

    Best wishes to all of you! It sounds like a great venture and adventure.

  11. MarkCRobins says:

    All of us at Lawyerlocate.ca and EmSpace.ca wish you and Danny all the success in the world and I look forward to working together for a long time on shared projects, All the Best and Good Luck

  12. Jennifer Stauss Windrum says:

    So very excited for you Danny Brown. You guys will kill it. Uber smart team. I would wish you good luck, but I know you won’t need it. :):)

  13. Laura Tieman Click says:

    Congrats on the new gig! Go get ’em!

  14. Liz says:

    Congrats to you, Danny and the team! Can’t wait to see what evolves!

  15. Danny Brown says:

    Thanks guys!

  16. Kat Krieger says:

    Congrats!!

  17. Traci Burkitt says:

    Congrats!

  18. Nitin Mayande says:

    Congrats Danny Brown!!!

  19. Danny Brown says:

    Cheers, mate – looking forward to working with you, Matt, and the rest of the guys at Tellagence

  20. andymci says:

    I wish you folks nothing but the best. :) As always, I will be watching, listening, and learning.

  21. Tinu says:

    Congratulations – excited to see what you’ll be doing next!

  22. JonAston says:

    Hey, I would wish you best of luck – but I believe “luck” will have very little to do with your success. If there is anything I can ever do for you, please don’t hesitate to ask.

  23. LisaThorell says:

    Fab opening manifesto, hessiej . I look forward to watching the talented ARC team move the needle!

  24. Danny Brown says:

    You know the one thing that keeps standing out in your letter? The belief in “integrity” and doing things right across all parts of the business, internal and external. The last place we shared the day at had less and less of that as time went on – a clear sign to move on.
    Here’s to education, collaboration, and – most of all – integrity. :)

  25. KDillabough says:

    Huge congrats! Cheers! Kaarina

  26. belllindsay says:

    Huge congrats guys – what a team. xoxoxox

  27. Alex Abaz says:

    All the best Hessie – I read most of your posts and learn. Starting a business takes a lot of energy and courage. It’s not for the faint of heart. But at the end of the day it makes you feel like you’re in control of your own destiny. That always feels good. I’ve started over a couple of times and even went back to school (Microskills) thinking I could jump into the middle in a corporate role. That was naive so I’ve had to pull myself up by the bootstraps and start over, yet again. I think that when you run a business with a team it’s always easier so you’re on your way. I wish you all the best.

    • hessiej says:

      Alex Abaz Thanks Alex. You’re right this is a big move but we’re ready for it. At this stage, there is no where to go but up — for us and for this industry. And yes, it’s all about the team. And we have an amazing group of people who think alike and work well together.

  28. […] can read more about the mission statement of ArCompany in this introductory post by Hessie herself, who unfortunately can’t make it this week but who will be on later in the year. You can also […]

  29. Lisa Gerber says:

    First if all, a huge congratulations to you guys. Wow!
    Secondly, about your post. Maybe it’s because I haven’t had grains, sugar, or dairy in 22 days and I want go kill all the things, but I’ve really noticed a huge disconnect in brands’ awareness of their customer’s preferences. Yes, they don’t get social, and yes, they don’t get their customers. And then people who have been deprived of thier morning toast get really really pissed off. :)
    Ok, but seriously, I’m super excited for you guys!!!!

  30. […] I’m hoping we talk about her blog post announcing the launch of ArCompany, where she revealed the amazing revelation that led to this decision. I’m hoping we learn why on earth Hessie chose to work with Danny […]

  31. Fantastic post, Hessie. Glad I found this via Brian Vickery.

  32. […] When we began ArCompany over a year ago, we all had the vision of building a company that takes consumer expectations and behaviour today, combine it with the technological impetus. Together this would instigate the necessary business transformation that would allow companies to build sustainable performance businesses over the long-term. Remember this from my inaugural post? […]

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