Agency Feature: Lyxel&Flamingo

Lyxel & Flamingo agency

How do we define Lyxel&Flamingo?

As a digital-first, full-service, marketing agency, we help brands structure and grow their branding and marketing programs primarily in the digital environment. Lyxel&Flamingo started as a social and digital media agency in January 2015 but rapidly expanded in scale and scope of services. Today, we are one of the top creative solutions providers in the digital marketing universe while also cementing our foothold in mainline advertising — one huge step at a time!

We’re immensely proud of our in-house production capabilities. From digital videos to full-scale TVCs — we do it all! Our in-house photoshoot studio, technology solutions for brands as well as our proprietary media reporting tool add width to our marketing strategy approach. Our deep strategic partnerships with Amazon, Google, Facebook and Flipkart facilitate the science behind the strategic art we create! Hence, we are a densely packed outfit with talent across these capabilities and have been growing at almost 100% CAGR for the last 3 years.

Today Lyxel&Flamingo has a team of almost 200 full-time employees, which interestingly makes us one of the largest independent agencies in India with offices in Gurgaon, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Vancouver, Canada and Wyoming, US.

Lyxel&Flamingo was founded and is run by four partners — Dev Batra, CEO, Yesh Miranda, Chief Creative Officer, Shreyansh Bhandari, Chief Operating Officer and Priya Batra, Director, People Strategy and Growth. We are ably supported by folks who have been working with us since the very beginning and now constitute an important part of our growth – leading verticals / sub-verticals & competencies.

As an agency, our philosophy is about ‘Building For The Future’. The fundamentals of marketing and customer engagement are rapidly evolving and we strongly believe that we have to keep peering into the future to anticipate new trends & structures to ensure that our clients are always ahead of their peers in adapting to emerging hype cycles.

It’s our style! We like being ahead of the game as opposed to playing catch up.

Speaking of which, we are extremely conscious of our growth culture. A culture that focuses on doing things passionately and always pushing the envelope – yet giving complete independence to our people to decide their growth and in a decentralised manner.

We have six core values (Thinking Big, Being Entrepreneurial, Excellence, Perseverance, Growth of Self and Others & Humility) that we have celebrated for the last five years and every month, our people are rewarded for exemplary demonstration of these core values – leading to eventually earning company stocks. This has created consistency in our culture and alignment with a larger vision in the minds of people at Lyxel&Flamingo.

What’s in the name?

Lyxel&Flamingo – Lyxel is the left brain of the company & so it deals with the Mathematics of media & the science of analytics. This feeds into what we call the right brain of the company, i.e, Flamingo – which, with its bright hues, stands for creativity, sensory appeal, and aesthetics.

What do we do? 

2015 was the year when the Indian industry was simmering with start-ups, mostly of high mortality. There were many big players at the time but very few agencies that focused strongly on both media and creative services. As the digital marketing scene exploded, we were able to create a space for ourselves, owing to our capabilities in media, creative, technology, and Analytics solutions.

Today, we offer almost every service under the sun; including management of third party e-commerce, social media and influencer strategy, SEO (Local, e-commerce, Enterprise, Amazon SEO, & more for brands like The Body Shop, Asics Shoes, Cipla, AMD India, SRL Diagnostics & Colorbar Cosmetics, amongst others.

Also read: Agency feature: Agent M Creative

How do we evolve? 

Digital media is constantly evolving, shape-shifting, and getting complex by the day. It is my key role, as a founder, to understand new emerging trends for the needs of our clients. All the bright ideas that we have developed have mostly come from clients or our people. So, it’s important to keep our learning and absorption quotient on and keep looking for longshots. 

Social responsibility in social media

I believe agencies can have a huge impact in raising awareness about issues – either through the client’s work or by directly creating content to raise social awareness.

Amongst many of our works, as an agency, we created a video at the start of the lockdown to raise awareness around the plight of daily wagers of India who were not able to earn their daily living due to sudden economic lockdown and promoted the same widely to help raise funds for the cause.

The need of the hour 

While the business is growing and we have created 40 new jobs in this lockdown. We are absolutely concerned and committed to the mental health of our people. These are tough times and we have seen people struggling to cope up with the lockdown, uncertainty, social isolation in some cases, or mental health issues like depression, anxiety, etc. So, we onboarded an organization that provides 24×7 counseling and therapy support to our team members and help them during these crazy times. When our people are happy and in great shape mentally and physically, everything eventually falls in place.

We learned the hard way

Agency business is a low margin business at the scale we operate. It is important to preserve cash and maintain a strong focus on the bottom lines.

Talking of the hard way and making mistakes, we have made way too many – not safeguarding us from clients with expectations and budgets like we see in those memes, to questioning if we even know advertising, to not pushing back on unrealistic expectations of creating ‘viral’ campaigns overnight.

Did we just share that?

I can write a 2000-page book on how I have made a complete fool of myself in serious client situations. For the first business we won, our scope included building a Facebook app and the entire team was clueless about it.

There have been so many pitches, where the deck from the creative team was being made ‘pitch-perfect’ till the pitching slot and I would start speaking and setting context while my team would be frantically adding creatives at the last minute. But those were early days when we were hustling and there was not much to lose. I am so glad a lot of those things are more sorted now. But this business is fun – I meet all kinds of people, clients, vendors, prospective employees, and a myriad of experiences.

The industry as we foresee

Three major changes will happen:

  • Content will not just get created, but syndicated from a portfolio of rising micro-influencers.
  • More tools will be used to make our work more efficient and less labor-intensive.
  • Many digital agencies will have integrate mainline creative services in their portfolio to grow as digital-first is going to be the motto of the brands with a change in the current landscape.

A day without the Internet

I am a domesticated family man. And lockdown was a blessing in some ways, where I got to spend some great quality time with my parents, wife, and kids – who are 12 and 9. A day without internet now means I will probably cook a Burrito bowl for the family (bragging about my cooking skills), solve a Lego with the kids, go out for a drive, read a book, and drink lots of wine in a day.