When asked to describe Social Revolt, a few thoughts came to mind for Co-Founder Harrison Blum: small but mighty, nimble, and agile — with a goal to seek impact on a global scale through expert digital marketing. And judging from their impressive portfolio, the award-winning agency is doing just that.
Harrison kicked off Social Revolt seven years ago with his partner Marty Martinez as a small social media agency and has since transformed the company into a full-service marketing firm committed to keeping pace with the “constant evolution of digital marketing.” As a result, the Social Revolt team has executed large campaigns for a wide range of clients, from lofty names like Lyft and 7-Eleven to the United Nations and various nonprofit organizations.
“We're a small but mighty team, as we all say. But with some of our campaigns, we've played on the global stage a little bit with a couple of campaigns that have hit the billions in terms of impressions,” Harrison says. “A lot of our work now is with nonprofits and social impact organizations, which has been a nice little pocket for us.”
According to Harrison, Social Revolt uses a mix of full-time employees and freelance partners to successfully manage their growing customer base and the challenges that come as a result.
“We have seven employees and a great network of freelance contractors and partners that we've worked with for years on very specific specialty needs,” he says. “And that's really allowed us to win in a lot of areas, because we're very nimble, very reactive.”
Early on in the agency’s growth, Social Revolt began using Harvest for tracking time across various tasks. Harrison now considers the tool an integral part of the business:
“I clocked in under my 10,000th hour last year with Harvest — so we've nerded out on Harvest for a long time. And we've really seen it evolve with our company and now we have it where it's really simple and we can build in a lot of automation.”
From tactical forecasting to establishing expectations with clients, here’s how Harvest helps them succeed.
Setting the right standards
Like many other customers, Social Revolt relies on Harvest data to forecast for each project.
“Some of the greatest successes we've had with Harvest data is with creating forecasts in terms of labor needs,” Harrison says. “We have a responsibility matrix that we use where we'll pull all of our Harvest hours from the last six months. It tells us how much every employee is utilized and where we’re having the most demand in terms of time. So now we have standards that we can work with. Every proposal has to align with the services outlined in Harvest, and that corresponds with our bookkeeping records. So it's all very clean and very organized, and we've been able to really define what is billable, what is not billable, where is the scope creep.”
But it doesn’t stop there. According to Harrison, Social Revolt uses Harvest in a very tactical way to ensure both clients and employees are happy.
“Harvest helps us identify deficits with clients that are underserved, but also protects us from clients that are creeping in on scope and setting bad precedents for our employees,” Harrison says. ”We've worked very hard in setting clear boundaries — we don't want any of our team members to have to answer emails on the weekends, outside of business hours. And we teach our team members to set these precedents with our clients. I think we're empowering them to be more effective with their own time, and Harvest is a great tool to teach those lessons.”
Staying in “lockstep” on every account
As a full-service digital media agency, Social Revolt offers a multitude of features ranging from strategic marketing planning to influencer representation. They use Harvest to keep track of which features customers have signed up for so everyone is on the same page.
“We need to make sure we're all in alignment and lockstep on every account because the work that we do is comprehensive,” Harrison says. “We probably have 15 different services, with four services as our core competencies, so we just needed to find a way to simplify across all teams. All of our proposals follow very specific terminology in terms of our service offering. That same terminology is used in Harvest and dictates how our team members can engage with that account.”
By doing so, the team can see what they’re allowed to provide for the client — and where they can potentially add business for a particular project.
“If a client asks one of our team members to do something and the employee can't clock in with Harvest under that task, that means we don't offer that feature for that client. So it creates a bit of an opportunity for us to upsell.”
Assessing administrative time
Added features aside, Social Revolt also uses Harvest to identify customers who might need a little extra administrative work added to their proposals so the team doesn’t get stuck with “black holes” that take up too much time.
“I review labor to get a sense of where things are becoming a little bit difficult to manage,” Harrison says. “And when we see there's an account that has a lot of administrative tasks, a lot of emails, a lot of phone calls, a lot of back and forth. Sometimes we have to begin incorporating that into our proposal. We've had clients that take so much of our time administratively — they require us to come into their offices and manage their teams internally. And some of our programs are heavy, so it does require us to build some inroads with and get everybody on the same level playing field. So with those trends we'll just start incorporating things into the proposal.”
As Social Revolt continues to produce great work on a global scale, Harvest will be there as a trusted partner. Here’s to another 10,000 hours!