Awesome Agencies

Reviewing Action Rocket’s creative approach to email.

  Gregg Blanchard     February 27, 2019    

Spend any amount of time in the email space and you're bound to run into Action Rocket. They work with a long list of impressive brands, publish some fascinating data, and do incredible work. Action Rocket's Agency Director, Lexi Clarke, was kind enough to give me the scoop on one of email's most creative teams.


Gregg: Let's start with the basics, Lexi. Tell me a little bit about Action Rocket, when it started, where you're located, how big the team is, etc.

Lexi: ActionRocket is the creative agency for the email channel. We fill a gap in the industry as brands struggle bringing their email program to life. Email unicorns (people who can create content, design and code stand out emails) are hard to find. If you’re lucky enough to have a unicorn on your team they may be stressed out and overworked. Creative agencies don’t specialise in email and ESPs have moved towards self service models.

ActionRocket is a perfectly sized team of 15 based in London, we hire and grow our own talent and tailor our services to help brands get awesome emails sent.

Gregg: I have to ask because I'm always curious about names, but what's the story behind the ActionRocket name?

Lexi: I could tell you some story about us being born from the stars, but really I think it was a domain name that stood out when Elliot our founder set up ActionRocket in 2012. It’s the people that make our name, and once people have heard us talk, been in a workshop, read a blog, or a tweet, our name sticks.

Gregg: As you mentioned, you guys calls yourself "The Creative Studio for the Email Channel". With all the flashy technologies out there that distract marketers, why email?

Lexi: Email isn’t going anywhere, and when someone loves your brand and the stories you tell they’ll keep your brand in their inbox. Brands doing this well include PizzaExpress who reward their subscribers with exclusive content and freebies from Prosecco to their famous DoughBalls. They give their customers something of value and more brands need to celebrate this.

Secondly email is so important in the purchase process brands need to spend a little more time on their service emails and CRM journeys triggered from behaviour in app, online and in the inbox.

Basics we’ve learned… make awesome email you’re proud to send, and customers will seek you out in their crowded inbox.

Gregg: Obviously, there are other email agencies out there but what's ActionRocket's angle? How does your team stand out?

Lexi: We have a senior team of email specialists making stand out email everyday. Our family feel culture means everyone works together to get awesome work done and clients trust us. We don’t need a sales team instead we use word of mouth and when clients move jobs they take us with them.

Gregg: Any recent campaigns or clients you're particularly proud of?

Lexi: We’re happy we were shortlisted for BIMA and DMA’s for the Blue Planet 2 launch email.  It was extra special to work on a campaign as big as Blue Planet 2 and all that the program has done to push awareness of climate change and plastic pollution across the world. Being a London based agency we have a lot of admiration for Sir David Attenborough too. It was a nice touch that email was recognised and shortlisted in an Advertising focused award like the BIMA’s.

The work itself showed what good message, and engaging interesting content can look like when made by a talented email designer. Kudos to our design and the BBC team for this one.

Gregg: It's a new year and a promising one for email, anything exciting coming up for Action Rocket in 2019 you want to share?

Lexi: Our clients’ CRM teams are less siloed and are now looking after more channels, we’re reflecting our services to support these teams.  We’re good at concise actionable messaging and we’re taking that to other channels, from Instagram stories to app notifications.

Another area we are focusing on is strategy to drive intelligent programs that go beyond the brief we receive. Holly Mander has joined to grow this service and our clients are making the most out of the creative strategy we can provide.