Andrew Orr’s rise through the ranks to now lead TRO as the agency’s new MD has been steady. The agency has also been one that has been consistently in the front rank through that time. Andrew’s career started as an event and tours manager, so his promotion marks a the rise of a lifeblood career brand experience marketer to the summit of a lifeblood brand experience agency. Fieldmarketing grabbed the chance to ask him how it feels and what it means to take up the reins at TRO.
- How does the new responsibility feel?
I’ve been at the agency for nearly 17 years so to have the opportunity to lead the agency is a massive honour.
I feel great excitement in the possibilities ahead, particularly when fusing TRO’s extensive history in the experiential marketing space, with the amazing creative opportunities the channel now offers. We’ve got great foundations that we’ve set up over the last couple of years. Going through Covid, we had to adapt, and I feel confident that because of that, the agency is going to go from strength to strength.
- What are the most exciting bits of the TRO legacy?
TRO was born in 1982, and with that comes a big legacy.
We are one of the original experiential experts, and I am passionate about using this expertise to help grow existing and new clients’ businesses through the variety of capabilities the channel can deliver.
- From TRO 2022, what impressed you most?
Anthropy was a standout moment for me in November 2022. Anthropy is a unique three-day summit held at the Eden Project in Cornwall, which aims to bring leaders and influential individuals together to collectively focus on creating a new, longer-term positive vision for Britain. We were brought on board as delivery partner for the first-ever event last year, so it was an amazing opportunity for TRO to play a leading role in such a key societal topic. To top it all off, we’ve just been appointed as Anthropy’s delivery partner for the next three years.
I am always impressed in how we progress and innovate the work with our more established clients, which is key to our solid foundations, but equally supports the evolution of our offering and our ongoing ability to bring in new clients.
- What industry trends emerged in 2022 that are good news for TRO? Why?
In the turbulent marketplace we currently see, driven by Brexit and the pandemic, sadly many experiential agencies are struggling to rebuild to their previous heights. And with client needs changing, in particular with regards to shorter lead times, they are looking for assurances and proven expertise.
As an originator of experiential, TRO has strong foundations, notably our full-service event marketing capabilities, along with talented people, to navigate these challenges and continue to support clients new and old.
- What might be the next landmark on the TRO horizon?
Experiential Marketing Agency of the Year. The industry has changed shape since we last held this accolade, and so have we. Winning it in the near future is proof that we are evolving correctly for our clients and people.
- What ambitions do you have for the agency?
As a starting point, key focuses for us are client retention and innovation. Longer-term we are looking to grow the agency over the next few years, with the aim of diversifying our portfolio. TRO are known experts in the auto space, but our credentials in F&B are less well known, so driving visibility here is a priority. I also believe we’re in the age of collaboration, so that will be another growth focus for us moving forward – both within and outside of the Omnicom network. I am very excited about collaborative opportunities that will open new doors for the business and our people.
- Why do you love your work?
I really am like a broken record on this point, but it is the diversity of the channel that really gets me going. Diversity in what the channel can do. Diversity in the thinking we can create to answer the challenges or opportunities for our clients. That’s what gets me out of bed in the morning! No two days are the same and that’s what really excites me about our industry. I also love the emotional bond you create with people in experiential marketing – it’s something that other channels just don’t get close to and that’s what I think, makes our industry so special.