Book a call

Season 1 – Episode 79: Apurva Bose – Overtake Digital

Like what you hear?

Apply as a guest

Apply now

Season 1 – Episode 79: Apurva Bose – Overtake Digital

Apurva Bose (00:03.001)
Hello and thanks for coming along to and we have an office dog, the digital agency podcast where we talk to agency owner directors and learn more about what makes them tick. From the things that make them similar to the things they’d rather have been.

Apurva Bose (00:38.621)
them four questions and see where the conversation takes us over the next 25 minutes. Okay, so let us begin. Over to you.

Chris Simmance (00:49.73)
Thanks voiceover guy and on the podcast today I’m virtually hopping over the Atlantic to talk to talk to talk to a perver colloquially known as a B. How you doing, mate?

Not too bad. Thank you for joining me at this time of your morning. And just as I’m getting ready, just as I’m getting ready for bed. I’m not, I don’t get a bed at two 30 in the afternoon.

Apurva Bose (01:06.205)
Thank you for having me.

Hahaha, yeah and I’m waking up for the day so… Sometimes you might need a good nap, right?

Chris Simmance (01:17.982)
Yes, yeah, well, we were just talking about dogs and children and sometimes they do tie you out. So talk to us a little bit about the agency. So overtake digital, how long have you been running? What are the core services? Tell us, maybe a potential client might be listening.

Apurva Bose (01:22.676)
Yes, they do.

Apurva Bose (01:30.047)

Apurva Bose (01:36.885)
Sure, sure. So we are a full service digital agency. We started about seven years ago. It was just four of us guys. We started out in a basement of our co-founder and started working. We all worked at a previous agency and mostly like the automotive side of digital marketing where we work with tier ones, tier twos and local dealerships as well. So we kind of…

Chris Simmance (01:56.652)

Apurva Bose (02:05.989)
you know, saw what our previous agency was doing. We weren’t really happy. We figured there was a way that we could do things better, provide better service, be better consultants than what, you know, our previous agency was doing. So we went out on our own seven years from now, seven years later, here we are. You know, things are going well, obviously, you know, there’s been challenges with any agency when you start growing them.

Chris Simmance (02:20.238)

Chris Simmance (02:31.649)
Oh yeah.

Apurva Bose (02:33.777)
from going to, whether it’s personnel to clients. So there’s a lot more stakeholders than where it was. So it’s been constant learning. It’s been really exciting. Can’t complain. I’m glad we made this decision to do this just because it has been a blessing, not just with work, but having that work-life balance now as well.

Chris Simmance (02:58.59)
Yeah, I think there’s, there’s some, I often say that running an agency is a bit like going on a roller coaster. It’s champagne on the way up, but punches in the face on the way down. And sometimes you get lots of champagne. Sometimes you, you get lots of punches in the face, but one of the key things I think about running your own agency is that you can, it does afford you a little bit of latitude when it comes to, I have to say the dog to the vets today. I can’t have any calls or.

Apurva Bose (03:07.813)
Mm-hmm. Ha ha ha. Ha ha. Yup. Ha.

Apurva Bose (03:25.609)
Yep. Mm-hmm.

Chris Simmance (03:27.534)
It’s my child’s first day at school and I want to take her, him there, you know, that sort of thing. And that’s the sort of thing which it’s a privilege to have as a member of staff, but you can’t do that as often as you can choose to do it as a business owner. There are a lot of reasons why some of those things are a lot harder on the other side of the fence at times as well though. And so what do you think has been one of the biggest successes that you guys have seen since you started the agency?

Apurva Bose (03:32.989)

Apurva Bose (03:40.125)

Apurva Bose (03:44.233)

Apurva Bose (03:56.881)
So, you know, a lot of times what we noticed, at least with the industry that we were in, automotive is, you know, is at the forefront of a lot of tech innovations as far as what you get now in cars. I remember my dad seeing, you know, my Mercedes recently and he was just kind of shocked because he’s like, oh, I remember the first time I drove a car back in India, we didn’t even have seat belts. Like, you know, we have these bench seats. So.

Chris Simmance (04:21.65)
Yeah, my dad’s my dad’s my dad’s a mechanic and there’s cars that still come into the garage which are like 3040 years old and it’s like that is it’s a death trap.

Apurva Bose (04:33.665)
Oh wow. Yeah, sometimes I joke with my wife. I was like, you know, telling our son that back in the day I would have just had you sitting up front and we wouldn’t need a car seat. Obviously a joke. Please do get a car seat and put your child in there. But one of the things that we learned were a lot of times these dealers, talking about them specifically, you know, there’s a lot going on in any industry as there is.

Chris Simmance (04:49.398)
Yeah. Yes.

Chris Simmance (05:03.374)

Apurva Bose (05:03.645)
But a lot of times just speaking in layman’s term, being more of a consultant, taking that approach than just being more salesy as far as, oh, you need to spend more budget here. Sometimes it’s just reallocating budget, telling them that you’re fighting on their behalf instead of with against them. You know what I mean? Like you’re not always trying to gouge them for more budget. Obviously sometimes you do need more budget to run campaigns that…

that may be more competitive or that may be your bread and butter and everybody’s doing it. But there’s a lot of times just, you know, making them feel that somebody’s actually listening to their problems and finding a solution and not just saying, oh, this is the problem. You know, we’ve we sit in a lot of competitive pitches on behalf of our clients. And a lot of times people bring up problems. But, you know, what is the solution? What are you going to do for them? You know, we all know that.

Chris Simmance (05:44.376)

Apurva Bose (05:57.657)
sales and return on investment is important, but to get there, there needs to be strategies in place. There needs to be tactics that align with the business’s goals. It’s not just something that you want to do because everybody’s doing it. It has to make sense for them. So just listening, understanding their specific business needs and aligning them with what they want to achieve by whatever term of contract. You have six months, one year, two years.

Chris Simmance (06:23.998)
Yeah. And so.

Apurva Bose (06:28.807)
me again, Minty Digital increases the number of clients by 38%

accelerator program. So check out

Chris Simmance (06:41.39)
I was literally midway through a question, rude voiceover guy. So if you could go back in time, roughly around seven years or so, you’re all sitting in a room together thinking, right, we’re going to get this thing done. We’re going to build this business, but pop into, into the middle of the room comes AB from the future and you’ve got one piece of advice to give your yourself and your co-founders. What, what, what advice would you, what advice would you give?

Apurva Bose (06:43.859)

Apurva Bose (06:56.181)

Apurva Bose (07:09.229)
So I would just say that trust your gut instinct. A lot of times that there’s a lot of data and data can be overwhelming. You know, we rely on data and that is good. But sometimes there’s just something in your gut that tells you that a certain client may not be right or, you know, when you’re starting out a business, at that point in time, you want any client and all the clients that you can get. Even though

Chris Simmance (07:26.859)

Chris Simmance (07:32.759)

Apurva Bose (07:33.973)
Theoretically, we’re all like, oh yeah, we don’t wanna work with certain clients, we wanna have that flexibility, but I would go back and tell my past self that just trust your gut instinct, and sometimes a client may not be a right fit, so you don’t have to push it and try to get them signed on because it causes more headaches and gray hair and loss of hair than just not having to deal with them on a day-to-day basis.

Chris Simmance (07:58.73)
Absolutely. Um, side question on that. Um, so you said, you know, when you start, you do kind of take on what you can because you need the revenue in order to do the other pieces. Um, at which point do you think that you as an agency knew what a good slash ideal client might well be? How, how did you, where did you get to, to go? This is, this is the one, this is the type.

Apurva Bose (08:06.353)

Apurva Bose (08:17.801)
So how’s?

So go ahead.

Chris Simmance (08:22.778)
Sorry, no, we’re over talking each other. It’s that delay that Atlantic cable is not doing its job today. So if, if you’ve got, you know, three issues in one year in however far into the agency, at what point was it that from a personal and business point of view that you guys went, we know who our ideal client is, and we’re going to say no to budget or type of business? How did you work that out?

Apurva Bose (08:29.111)
Nope, nope, it’s not.

Apurva Bose (08:52.385)
So obviously a lot of it was based on personal experience and experience as a company. One of the things that I, when I was brought on or one of the first four people, I talked about making sure our team was first and foremost before the clients. And that’s not to say that clients aren’t important, but a lot of times it’s making sure you have clients that treat the team members, whether they’re just a junior copywriter or a…

an account executive, what have you, they’re treated with respect. They’re not talked down to. They’re not made to feel like they’re fools or they don’t know what they’re talking about. So that was something that we do not tolerate. We’ve noticed in early pitches, there’s signs. There’s obviously a lot of times when you meet somebody for the first time, you will kind of get that inkling and kind of feeling. And that’s why I go back to saying that gut instinct.

Chris Simmance (09:47.371)

Apurva Bose (09:47.733)
Because you know sometimes that this client is going to be a lot more hassle than what they’re paying you for. And so just kind of realizing that what is important to you. Is your team important? Are you going to want to have a revolving door? And I’m not saying that that’s good or bad as a tactic, but are you going to have a revolving door of junior employees? Or do you want to build something longer where these people are here for the long term or are feeling invested or feeling valued?

Chris Simmance (09:53.634)

Apurva Bose (10:16.925)
And a lot of times employees want to feel like they’re also heard, you know, so just kind of siding with them when you see things that kind of transpire. And a lot of times in the past, I may not have stood up just because of, you know, where we were with our business, but now we just, we’ve just made it a kind of a deal where we don’t deal with clients that are going to cause us hassle or treat people on our team as just, you know, not with respect.

Chris Simmance (10:25.102)

Chris Simmance (10:33.195)

Chris Simmance (10:37.324)

Chris Simmance (10:44.37)
Yeah, yeah. Yeah, I think it’s hard to get to that point. But it’s really important to stick to it, isn’t it? And so is this something that you guys have done or you in particular have done in the agency that you’ve it, you can chalk it up as a mistake, but a mistake that’s taught you a lesson, which has helped the agency to grow.

Apurva Bose (10:52.219)

Apurva Bose (11:06.969)
So obviously, you know, a lot of times when you are a newer agency, deadlines and reaching deadlines, you know, it’s first and foremost, right? Like a lot of times you’re going to cut corners starting out. You’re going to cut corners. You’re going to want to push things quicker, get them posted quicker, without giving the appropriate time to proofread or, you know, without doing the due diligence with attention to detail. That has happened.

Chris Simmance (11:25.279)

Apurva Bose (11:34.517)
quite a bit when we first started out, just not proofreading the ad copies that we were putting out, things like that. So now we take more time. We’ve set a deadline of when we get a request, a one-off request or whatever request it is out of the normal, we have a 48-hour turnaround just because we want to give our team enough time where they’re not overwhelmed. They’re able to kind of do…

Chris Simmance (12:00.471)

Apurva Bose (12:02.333)
the steps of what they need to do with checking and proof reading before it’s posted. So, you know, those were dark times. I’ll tell you that there’s been times when, you know, you read something, you see the ad and it’s already running because you got a sponsored post and you’re like, oh my God, we misspelled this word or, and it’s something and people on the internet are ruthless. So, you know, for a bigger brand, it becomes like.

Chris Simmance (12:08.248)

Chris Simmance (12:22.325)

Chris Simmance (12:27.118)

Apurva Bose (12:29.785)
everybody catches on and everybody’s just commenting threads after threads on.

Chris Simmance (12:30.158)
Thanks for watching.

Chris Simmance (12:34.55)
There are, you see them semi-regularly, those kinds of blog articles where it’s got screenshots of, look what this brand said by accident or did on purpose by accident and things like that. And sometimes those things stick. But you know, at the same time, when you’re working with people to deliver things for people, time is the real commodity.

Apurva Bose (12:44.521)

Apurva Bose (12:48.797)

Apurva Bose (13:00.478)

Chris Simmance (13:01.166)
And if you don’t give your team enough time to think properly, then whatever it is that they deliver is higher risk as quality.

Apurva Bose (13:09.945)
Yeah, and I also think that just setting expectations, one of the things that, you know, if I could go back to the previous question, I’d like to highlight this answer as well, is setting expectations with the clients, because when you’re newer, you don’t, you’re just like, oh, I wanna do everything to please them, or I wanna make sure that, you know, they’re happy, because there’s thousands of other agencies out there. So if you wanna make sure you’re doing everything, so you’ll, you know, they’ll be like, oh, get it posted up in an hour, and you’re like, oh yeah, sure, we’ll do it, and you know, you’re just doing.

Chris Simmance (13:21.418)
Alright. Thank you.

Apurva Bose (13:38.921)
going through the whole rush and bunch of emotions getting that done. So just setting expectations is half the battle because once they’re aware that you have a hard rule of 48 hours, I think they understand. So if there’s a request that needs to be done by Friday, the client over time realizes that by Wednesday, I should let them know or by Tuesday, you know, so I get it up earlier.

Chris Simmance (13:43.413)

Chris Simmance (14:01.682)
Yeah, yeah, no, I’m with you. And I think that, you know, agencies are, yes, you’re using a laptop. Yes, you’re using the computer. Yes, you’re on the internet, but they’re people businesses. People deliver services for people to buy from people and you can harm stuff and harm clients with bad expectation management. You can.

Apurva Bose (14:12.508)

Apurva Bose (14:22.768)

Chris Simmance (14:26.402)
harm potential clients by not meeting the expectations of a potential client, their clients. And expectation management goes across all layers of an agency delegation as a basic level of leadership. And you need to make sure expectations are clear and expectations are managed and met. And it’s hard because you don’t want to sound like a bad guy sometimes when you say no. And on the other side of that,

Apurva Bose (14:37.713)

Apurva Bose (14:46.036)

Chris Simmance (14:52.438)
The last thing you want to do is, is be the guy that is always saying no, but, or yes, and if you say yes all the time, it often goes wrong. Um, so conversely, is there something that you, you started the business doing? And when, when you started, um, when the agency started, is there something that you, um, you did that was just kind of right on day one and it stayed the same?

Apurva Bose (15:00.789)

Apurva Bose (15:18.117)
So I think we kind of lucked out initially with the people that we hired the first few people You know we do write by one of the things that we focus on is our employees our Team members just because we want to make sure that They feel part of something that’s more valuable You know one of the things that we pride ourselves as we don’t have a huge You know turn around turn. Sorry

Chris Simmance (15:32.341)

Apurva Bose (15:46.665)
forgetting the word, but we don’t have a, yes, turnover. Sorry, I was gonna say turnout. I was like, oh, that’s not right. Yes, we do. But we don’t have a revolving door, so to speak. The people that we’ve had have been with us for at least three years plus. To us, that’s kind of a testament to doing things right by the team. A lot of things that I’ve noticed that people take people for granted.

Chris Simmance (15:48.104)
Left hand over.

Chris Simmance (15:53.202)
Yeah, no, that’s the opposite. You want a good turnout.

Apurva Bose (16:16.605)
doing that causes a lot of turnover, but it’s so much more work when you have to bring somebody new on and train them on your processes. It takes them, there’s a huge learning gap because they have to, they may be smart as far as digital marketing and things like that, but they have to learn the system and the processes of the company. So just making sure that the people that we have currently are taken care of so they feel more valued.

So when we bring somebody else on, you know, there’s a whole collaborative effort. It’s not just the person training them, but even the people that aren’t directly involved or helping them kind of learn or get better at things that they need to do. So I think that was one of the biggest things that has helped us be successful is just being able to kind of relate with the people that we’ve hired and, you know, working with them to make sure that we are all kind of going towards the same goal.

Chris Simmance (16:55.265)

Chris Simmance (17:10.571)

Apurva Bose (17:10.726)
talking to people on the team, they feel like they want to be part of the ship, you know, so That that’s kind of exciting to me

Chris Simmance (17:16.442)
Yeah, they’ve got people have got to know where you’re going in order to want to get on board, don’t they? And so someone’s knocking on your door right this minute and they’re saying, a b a b, I’m starting an agency tomorrow. Don’t worry, we won’t be competing with you just yet. But what one piece of advice can you give me as on day one I start my agency, I’ll implement that advice.

Apurva Bose (17:22.777)
Yeah, exactly.

Apurva Bose (17:43.969)
So, you know, just taking the risk. The biggest thing is taking a risk, because when I started with Overtake, I was in the process of buying a house. Like, we closed everything, I bought a house. We didn’t get the papers, but you know, we were in that 30-day period where we just wait for closing date. And when I told my lender that, hey, I’m…

switching jobs, they’re like, where are you going? And you know, you’re making a mistake because how are you gonna do this right now? It could cause issues or whatnot. My wife was like, you know, just do it. If you feel this is something that’s going to make you less stressed out, make you feel better, you know, do more. Wanna wake up every day feeling excited about what’s ahead. You know, you need to do it. So just taking that risk, I feel is first and foremost, because a lot of times people

Chris Simmance (18:16.161)

Chris Simmance (18:37.526)

Apurva Bose (18:42.909)
kind of want to do it, but don’t want to leave the comfort. And that’s fair too, because in our situation, if it wouldn’t have worked out, I’d probably have been homeless six months later or something, because I just bought a house. But yeah, not ideal. I still remember the face, my lender had, she was shocked. She was like, you cannot be serious, right? We’re gonna have to file this paperwork again. So I was like, well.

Chris Simmance (18:54.974)
Yep. Not ideal.

Apurva Bose (19:09.565)
That’s why you’re getting paid. And secondly, I think that just sticking with it because a lot of times people will take that first step. But when the going gets tough, people start kind of diverting attention or they’re looking at other things. Other things look shiny, but you want to know what you’re doing it for. You have to have a goal of why. And that why has to be bigger than what you are trying to.

Chris Simmance (19:10.114)
Good timing.

Apurva Bose (19:39.305)
kind of achieve, so to speak, in the short term. It has to be very long term. What is your why? On why did you start out going freelancing or starting your own agency? So having that why and just following through and keeping with it is gonna help you be successful in your agency. Down the line, once it takes off, you can have smart people to do things that you may not be good at doing. And that’s how it grows. But…

Chris Simmance (19:59.562)
Yeah. And then.

Apurva Bose (20:08.009)
just having that why so you’re able to relate to people.

Chris Simmance (20:11.862)
Wonderful. And if you come back onto the podcast for season two next year, in one year’s time, what’s the key thing that you guys are working towards next year that you can celebrate as a success in the year’s time?

Apurva Bose (20:17.15)

Apurva Bose (20:24.493)
So right now, we are diversifying from automotive and going into other industries or verticals, so to speak, insurance. We landed one of the biggest homeowners insurance and mortgage companies in the US, so that’s kind of exciting. But what we want to celebrate is having our foothold in other verticals as well.

whether it’s cannabis that we’re trying to get into, or mortgage, real estate, so things like that. That would be kind of huge. Obviously, making sure our team is growing. So by next year, we’ve had five more people added on to the team, that would be kind of an achievement as well. That means we’re going in the right direction.

Chris Simmance (21:14.242)
Well, hopefully we’ll get there. Thank you so much for coming on to the podcast, Aperva.

Apurva Bose (21:18.313)
Thank you so much, Chris. I appreciate it. And hopefully you guys have a great day. The rest of the day.

Chris Simmance (21:23.439)
We’ll be celebrating in a year’s time, don’t you worry. Yes, we’ll hopefully see you there. In April, it will be the next time. Yeah. And in our next episode, we’ll be speaking with another agency leader to hear their story and the lessons they learned along the way. Thanks very much for listening.

Apurva Bose (21:25.741)
Yes, or hopefully at Brighton. Yes, yes, yep.