My Journey to Spark: Elle Rayner

My Journey to Spark: Elle Rayner

Journey To Spark Elle

Tell us a bit about who you are and what you do at Spark?

I’m an Account Manager at Creative Spark. A key part of my role is managing the day to day for our key accounts. There’s a real variety of clients and work at Spark which keeps the role exciting and interesting, from house builders to crazy golf; from large strategic projects to the smaller ad hoc jobs, and all things in-between. It never gets boring!

My favourite part of the job is working in collaboration with everyone, teamwork enhances creativity and makes people feel valued and heard. Building and maintaining relationships with both clients and the Spark team is really important in ensuring the creative output best fits the brief.

In order to build solid relationships with all of my clients I adapt my approach to suit their style. Demonstrating that I’m an extension of their team builds their trust in me to deliver the best creative possible.

What’s the best thing about working in the/creative industry space? 

Being creative everyday is something that I value the most about working within this industry. I’ve been privileged to have worked alongside some amazing talent, who have encouraged me to think outside of the box, and always strive to deliver the best work for our clients. Watching an idea come to life and evolve from receiving the brief, to the delivery of the end product is something which really excites me. Creativity is so important in every part of society and business; it can provoke different thoughts and actions, a process I feel honoured to be a part of.

Tell us a bit about your journey before Spark 

Having worked in hospitality for 10 years I thought it was time for a change! I was keen to progress my career and found myself in a role at Asda, working in the packaging team. The design team I worked alongside managed Asda’s rosta of creative agencies. I would watch the creative team present their designs and thought – ‘that’s what I want to do’.

I landed my first role as junior account manager on the Kellogg’s account at a creative agency in Leeds working on POS, packaging and marketing. I loved the design side of the role and decided that was what I would pursue. Following a 6 month break travelling, I began working for a brand consultancy on the Aldi account. I got my first taste for branding and how powerful it can be and had the opportunity to work alongside so many different agencies with different creative styles. I have never wanted to be in any other industry. 

We all appreciate a tight brief from a client – but how do you feel when you’re given the freedom to ‘think about what’s possible’? 

    • What questions would you ask the client or your internal teams? 

As experts in our field its part of our role at Spark to push and challenge the brief. No-one remembers creative that is ‘safe’, it needs to make people stop and think. Firstly, we ask the client who they are wanting to target, this can give a huge push towards the direction to the creative output. We also need to understand what they want to achieve from the creative, and the budget they have to work with. When we review the creative output internally, we need to question whether it provides the client with what they need, and whether we’re providing them with a creative solution that has longevity.

    • How would you get the client on-board with new ideas? 

It’s our job to provide the client with the information that backs up the creative thinking. They need to know why we have chosen the ideas we’re presenting back. It helps if we can provide examples of where a creative route has worked in other businesses to help them understand if its something that can work for them too.

    • What challenges do you foresee in getting them to buy in? 

There are a range of different challenges. Clients are spending a lot of money with us, and so sometimes if we are suggesting a creative that’s a step away from their norm, they can be fearful it might not work. It’s especially hard if a client has had a consistent look and feel for their brand for a long period of time. Budget can also be a key factor in a client not buying into a new idea or concept, but with the correct information to back up our creativity it can help them to see sometimes risks are worth the reward.

What would you like to ‘think is possible’ in the next 3 to 5 years at Spark? Go wild! 

From the moment I joined Spark a year and a half ago (which in the history of Spark isn’t a huge chunk of time) I have watched the company grow, and grow, it shows no sign of stopping. We have an amazing team who are passionate about what they do and this is reflected in the work we produce, and the relationships we have built. I think with this level of passion and determination we’ll see our client base grow further and spread into different industries.  Our experience and expertise will grow with it, making us unstoppable! Who knows maybe we’ll expand outside of the Northern Quarter!

Tell us an unpopular opinion 

I don’t like Harry Potter… sorry!

Do you have a party trick/fun fact about yourself? 

My Grandad was a blacksmith and taught me everything he knew so technically if I wanted to, this could be my next career move…who knows, it gives me options! 😊