12.digital "Double agent" — Anna Elchaninova
12.digital Account manager Anna Elchaninova worked as an internal social media development consultant at «Leroy Merlin» office for the whole year. These employees are often referred as "implant" and it's not a routine practice for digital agencies. Account managers at "KB-12" often become implants, but Ann spent a year on client's side and knows pros and cons of this approach like nobody else.
How did you join the company and why went to client's office right away?

I joined 12.digital 1.5 years ago, thanks to Head of SMM Sasha Golubeva — we worked together in another agency. Colleagues from "Leroy Merlin" company, that our team is helping with SMM, asked to find them an implant. They needed a person that could teach their staff to work within internal corporate social medias: write cool posts, edit them and create content-strategies, in other words - the whole SMM, but internal.

I passed a few interviews and I liked the very thought of working kind of in agency, but on client's side. It's unusual, you feel like a double agent.

Basically I was an external expert, consultant and I worked in client's office for a year, it's very interesting experience.

Tell us more about your work

Company just launched new version of corporate social media when I started my work and they needed to boost it. So I developed and hosted course on how to work with social media for company's employees: taught to create content-strategy, write and edit text and moderate communities. I personally mentored employees at first, but then we made a video for this course to train staff remotely.

My «students» could learn not just from the course. I created a Telegram chat where we discussed editing and various social media features, and made few short videos on how to work with Photoshop — so that staff members could make visuals for their communities on their own.

As a result, staff engagement (both authors and readers) increased in dozens times: so at the beginning posts had 0 reactions, but then after a while once I finished my work — 50. And company's management team was happy with my work: everybody agreed that social media became more cool and organic.

Few employees boosted so much that they started their own blogs, I was so happy about it!

And now tell about challenges!

The major con is that you miss out from agency atmosphere when you work in client's office. You're not aware of what's happening there, you simply don't get internal jokes appeared during your absence.

However I formed another team on client's side, equally cool. Guys accepted me as a family member and I'm grateful for that. But, as it's the client, I couldn't become part of their team for 100% - there were some work-related issues they couldn't discuss in my presence.
With client's team
But there are some pros working as an implant?

Sure! First of all, faster when you work from client's office you are «stewing» in this atmosphere, corporate culture and realize sooner what's important for company and how they think - so you sort out all their processes. I think it's crucial to go and check how your client is doing at least once a month. Our team still does that - once a month we visit each others' offices and work together.

Besides, working as an implant helps you to build up trust-based relations with clients faster. They see how you work and strive for them and better understand what you do and why.

What is your position in the company right now and what are your functions?

Once my contract with «Leroy Merlin» for internal work expired, I returned to 12.digital and our Team Leader Nikita offered me to work on a new project.

I call myself an Editor: I decide on the content, distribute tasks and monitor their compliance, communicate with the client. But officially I'm an Account Manager.

I am now building up an external social media image for new client. We entirely changed their content strategy and created a new design. It's really cool and profile medias publish our Stories all the time.
Which projects make you feel proud?

First of all, I transferred all SMM-related communication to Trello for our new client. It's so great and really structures processes. We discuss and plant all content there. This service is commonly-used, but I didn't find any SMM-editing cases. The way I managed to organize content publishing process with Trello - is my finding and makes me a bit proud.

I'm also proud of educational course which I made for previous client. I realized how useful it was when client invited me to their conference as a keynote speaker. My hour-long text masterclass ended up taking four hours as I was asked to tell more and more. It was such a great energy boost!

What do you enjoy most about your work?

The best feeling is when you make a great content idea, implement it and wait for people reactions. I care about everything we do and if people like content we create - it's not for nothing!

Now I'm creating content not all by myself - I have the whole team and each time we make something stunning. Routine posts turn into great mini special projects that are good enough for a case study.

What is «KB-12» for you?

Family, creativity and sentence "God knows, we tried our best!". Because we really do! :)