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60 seconds with… OrangeDoor’s Elizabeth Heron

Elizabeth is managing director, founder and driving force behind OrangeDoor, an integrated marketing communications, events and creative agency, which counts Dell EMC, SMART, Mizuno, Criteo, Inca Digital among its client portfolio.

Elizabeth has been at the forefront of long-term client Dell EMC’s business, from EMEA communications and media engagement plans, to global C-suite events. As well as heading up the UK chapter of DWEN (Dell Women Entrepreneurial Network), she has a strong partnership with WeConnect, an international network for female entrepreneurs.

Brand promise…
The personality and culture of the business is probably one of the most important aspects and it’s what makes us different as a business. If you speak to any of our clients, you will hear words that will resonate through any testimonial about being amazing, about being agile, smart and intelligent, and that’s what we try to achieve everyday. We spend a great deal of time and effort engaging new members of the team into the culture of OrangeDoor and there is most definitely a very strong culture here that our clients feel daily.

What’s trending in 2019?
We are seeing more business going through procurement and we are having to address things like CSR, budgets, delivery and ROI more. We are being held increasingly accountable and seeing a lot more compliance around our supply chain and ensuring that suppliers are absolutely aligned to us and our clients.

Luxury defined in 140 characters…
Personalisation and service first and foremost. Understanding the clients’ needs and offering a totally personalised experience. No two people and no two events are ever the same and you need to address each one with new vitality.

Townhouse or treehouse?
Treehouse… I think a treehouse is always going to offer you something more original.

The bucket list
I have never walked into a travel agent and booked a holiday. For the last 20 years, all my travel seems to have had an agenda. So, my bucket list absolutely has to have family attached to it. I think that’s the one thing with work travel – you get to experience the most incredible things, but you are never with the people that really matter. If I had to choose one destination, it would be Antarctica – I really would love to go there.

Last meal
For the first time in my life I wrote a letter and sent a present to a restaurant last weekend. I sent a huge exquisite fruit basket to every single member of Heston Blumenthal’s team at the Fat Duck restaurant. I have never experienced anything quite like it in my life. If you want to know what the epitome of luxury is, that was it.

The personalisation was incredible – even to the point that we were asked to fill out a questionnaire and they did something for my daughter, and I’m not going to tell you what because I don’t want to ruin the surprise if you get to go there, that made me and my daughter cry.

It was the best five hours I have spent in so long and they have to be utterly applauded. Our waiter phoned me up the week before to ask if there was anything that he could do to make our meal better. He introduced himself as soon as we arrived, and he stayed with us for four hours and looked after us.

Old fave
The Savoy – I think it’s the epitome of luxury in London. I think the service is magnificent and just the word Savoy invokes luxury, style and something that is very special.

Proud moment
Without a doubt it’s the moment I knew we had arrived as an agency. It was about seven years ago – we put a seven-figure budget together for a major client for a total integrated marketing campaign and they said yes! I also love bringing on new people and watching them grow and nurturing all the people that I have worked with over the years.

What inspires you?
That client email that you get at the end of the event. That email that said “you were amazing, I loved your team, I loved what you did”. It keeps us going – you get one of those testimonials at the end and it makes everything worthwhile. On another level, I am very inspired by women that have made a difference in business and politics as well.

It’s all in the detail…
I’m fastidious about running a stress test on every event a couple of weeks before. It’s that safety net that allows you to catch anything, whether that be a simple transfer that’s been missed, or god forbid anything bigger. It’s about the what if’s and being prepared. Clients don’t see that generally, a couple may join us on stress tests for larger events, but as a rule on a small event, clients don’t join us for those. I’ve always said it’s not a mistake until after the fact, so you’ve always got a chance to mend it.

Final word…
Amazing. I never had any plans to work in this sector. When I went on my first fam trip to Monte Carlo with a client, I was amazed that you could travel for business and have all these incredible experiences. It’s the opportunities and you get to experience things that no one else gets to see or do – such incredible lifetime experiences that make it all worthwhile!

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