When best friends make the best busi­ness partners

Sliding into a stranger's social media DM isn't usually a successful endeavor, but for these two BFFs turned creative partners—everything seems to be working out just fine.

Most peop­le mind­less­ly scroll through their social media feeds out of sheer habit, not expec­ting much to come out of it. But what hap­pens when you acci­dent­al­ly stumb­le across ano­t­her kind­red spi­rit and instant­ly rea­li­ze you’­re per­fect­ly in sync? Accord­ing to the two­so­me behind grass­roots crea­ti­ve agen­cy Kollektiv49, you take it one step fur­ther than merely fol­lowing each other — you go into busi­ness tog­e­ther. We tal­ked to Ava Cars­tens and Dani­el Wesche about how they met, how they got @kollektiv49 up and run­ning, and what it’s real­ly like being best friends with (strict­ly busi­ness) bene­fits.

What is Kollektiv49?

Kollektiv49: It’s an agen­cy that fea­tures a crea­ti­ve net­work plat­form and a blog, com­pri­sed of two leads and a ros­ter of free­lan­cers. We tailor online digi­tal acti­va­tions and off­line ana­log expe­ri­en­ces to pro­vi­de real moments and encoun­ters bet­ween brands and their tar­get audiences.

You’­re best friends that have built a bud­ding busi­ness tog­e­ther… How did you two meet?

Ava: We found each other through Insta­gram and it was click’ at first sight! I lik­ed one of Dani­el’s comments under a mutu­al frien­d’s post, so I scrol­led through his pro­fi­le and I enjoy­ed the over­all look of his feed. Plus, his bio men­tio­ned that he was an art direc­tor based in Ham­burg, which was per­fect becau­se I was loo­king for a crea­ti­ve spar­ring part­ner, so I wro­te him a DM. Tha­t’s how our sto­ry began… Ever­ything felt good right from the start.

What are the big­gest bene­fits of best friends working together?

Kollektiv49: Fami­lia­ri­ty! Work­flow, pro­cess, and com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on is much easier if you know each other well. Every new cli­ent or pro­ject means spen­ding a lot of time tog­e­ther, so you auto­ma­ti­cal­ly put more heart and effort into your work when you feel sur­roun­ded by a posi­ti­ve and warm atmo­s­phe­re. We’­re so gra­te­ful for our friendship and the team­work that has come out of it.

And what are the com­mon challenges?

Kollektiv49: If the workload is high, the friendship often has to be pla­ced on the back bur­ner — pri­va­te chats beco­me shor­ter, and busi­ness dis­cus­sions beco­me lon­ger. As such, you have to take care to be real­ly sen­si­ti­ve and respect­ful with one other during the stress­ful periods.

You’­re qui­te suc­cess­ful, having worked with adi­das, Zalan­do, Toyo­ta, Sam­sung, and many other top brands in the past. Who are some of your dream cli­ents for future col­la­bo­ra­ti­ons?

I’d like to work with more sus­tainab­le brands, NGO pro­jects, and anything dealing with the music indus­try — laun­ches, boo­kings, events, con­certs, etc…

I can’t name a sin­gle dream cli­ent — I love the diver­si­ty. For me, the per­fect mix for our cli­ent ros­ter lies wit­hin dif­fe­rent indus­tries: Mar­ket lea­ders, local heroes, medi­um-sized busi­nes­ses, and inno­va­ti­ve start-ups.

How do you adver­ti­se your busi­ness pro­ducts and services?

Kollektiv49: Word-of-mouth, most­ly. Also through our Insta­gram, web­site, news­let­ters, events, and through the social media chan­nels of the brands and com­pa­nies we work with.

Whe­re do you find inspi­ra­ti­on for your cam­pai­gns and acti­va­tions? How does it work when you two aren’t on the same page?

Kollektiv49: This might sound chee­sy, but it’s true — we’­re inspi­red by ever­y­day life. We always keep each other updated on what we’­re thin­king, and if one of us feels over-inspi­red by a poten­ti­al con­cept, we’ll hop on the pho­ne to talk it through and exchan­ge ideas.

What advice can you give friends loo­king to go into busi­ness together?

Kollektiv49: 1 — Always have a detail­ed visi­on. 2 — Kee­ping a calm mind is hel­pful. 3 — Trust in your per­so­nal-pro­fes­sio­nal relationship.

Shop the sto­ry: Ava is wea­ring Eva, and Dani­el is wea­ring Adam.

14 Dez. 2018 · NEUBAU EYEWEAR
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