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Meet the Member: Emilie Dhelens-Tormo, Vibe Creative Consulting
Member news | March 25, 2019
In this latest Meet the Member Feature, we spoke with Emilie Dhelens-Tormo, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Vibe Creative Consulting. Vibe helps businesses align their Product offer and their Marketing & Sales strategy with their target market needs. Keep reading to learn more about their services and global approach to Product Merchandising, Marketing, Sales, Communications and Management.
FACC: Emilie, you are based in New York while your colleague Tiffany is based in Paris and Biarritz. You both have extensive knowledge of both markets, does being bi-continental give you a distinct advantage and proximity with your clients?
EDT: Being bi-continental has proven to have many advantages. First it is certainly beneficial to our clients and the way we work together. As consultants, we have to be present whenever they need. Since Tiffany and I work on each and every project together, time difference between the U.S. and France is our ally. We can offer our clients to work faster and to save time and money by being connected for a longer period of time a day overall. That brings me to responsiveness. Whether our clients are domestic or foreign companies, the urge to stay relevant remains the same. Hearing about the latest trends, the news, the current economic situation, the growth opportunities, etc. from a trusted source established in the targeted country helps these businesses plan and react accordingly. Being bi-continental also means to be able to think outside the box, to be inspired by what we observe in other markets and to be proactive by suggesting new ideas to our clients.
FACC: As a boutique agency, what makes VIBE Creative Consulting uniquely positioned to respond to clients’ needs?
EDT: In today’s noisy and ever-changing environment, our clients need to find a way to stand out while managing the impact that shifting consumer behavior and disruption have on their business. At VIBE Creative Consulting, we help them adapt their offer and their marketing and sales strategies to their target market needs in the U.S., France, the U.K., and Canada. By combining Tiffany’s international background in Corporate and mine in Consumer, we encourage our clients to transform and we deliver full consistency from Product Merchandising to Marketing, Sales, Communications, and Management. This unique combination of expertise is our best asset to ensure the right product/service will reach the right customer/client the right way at the right time.
FACC: How has your experience working for larger corporations and brands influenced your approach with your current clients?
EDT: Working with larger corporations and brands in the past helped us shape a better service for our current and future clients. Right now, they are start-ups and small and medium size established businesses in different industries. Although they don’t face the same challenges, they expect the same level of expertise from a consultant. Thanks to our prior experience, Tiffany and I can see the big picture and understand right away where our clients come from and what ambition they want to achieve. We can better anticipate obstacles and challenges and suggest creative ways to overcome them (from Management to Supply Chain to Retail). We have also learned that flexibility and adaptability are required to thrive in the long run. The takeaway from both our background with larger companies is that top management should never settle for the status quo but instead constantly listen to feedback coming from the field. Taking reportings into consideration, improving, embracing innovation, and being ready for the next change in consumer behavior; that is what will make a company grow, not the size of a Marketing budget.
FACC: Your clients must be in various stages of development, what is your approach to assessing their needs?
EDT: Our approach is and always will be the same whether our clients are in an early stage of development or fully grown, whether they are launching a new product in Europe or want to expand in the U.S., etc. First we need to know who they are, which customer they are targeting, what their positioning is, what their value proposition is and why they are doing what they are doing. Often we will find that the expression of their needs does not reflect the exact needs as we might see them. Being a consultant is also being able to see the big picture and guide our clients towards the right direction, according to their vision and mission. That usually starts with making sure we are on the same page and aiming for the same goal.
FACC: What is the most common misconception on behalf of companies when transitioning to a new market?
EDT: Tiffany and I actually started VIBE Creative Consulting after witnessing numerous companies struggling to penetrate and grow a new market. The biggest pitfall of all is to assume you can just replicate what previously worked in the original market. This is a major mistake that leads every year to businesses failing. When entering a new market - whether domestic or international, a comprehensive knowledge of the target customers (clients) and a deep understanding of the local culture (business and consumer) is mandatory to be considered and plan on developing. We strongly believe that adapting is the key to thriving.
FACC: Do you have a recent success or case study that you feel illustrates the value of your services?
EDT: We have been recently approached by a French Law firm. They are doing amazing but the partners feel the need to reposition their business to stay relevant and gain visibility in a disrupted sector. Because of both our previous professional experience, Tiffany and I have been working mostly with brands in Fashion and Intimate Apparel. However, these clients were interested specifically in our ability to present them with the best practices and marketing current trends in very different industries and countries. That is exactly what VIBE Creative Consulting is about: being open-minded, finding inspiration someplace else, being curious, exploring other ways and considering different ideas. We want each and every client to be unique and stand out while fitting just right in.
FACC: What advice would you give to other FACC members?
EDT: Again, Tiffany and I believe that curiosity is the best form of education as well as stepping out of your comfort zone. Connecting and networking are essential to grow, especially in the U.S. . Questioning the “Why” you are doing what you are doing on a daily basis is a great way to stay focus. And finally, do not sweat for an answer when you can easily ask for help.