7 Questions with… Eleanor Haeg, Senior Engagement Lead, Client Partner

Senior Engagement Lead and Client Partner Eleanor Haeg answers 7 questions with GALE and shares her career journey, bringing storytelling to life with media, fostering a strong client-agency partnership, plus more in the Q&A below.

1. You recently celebrated your three year anniversary at GALE – congrats! Can you tell us more about your role?

Thank you! It has been an exciting three years. Day-to-day, I spend my time working closely with our client partners to diagnose opportunities and roadblocks that our team can help navigate. Once we collectively understand an opportunity, I bring together the right people at GALE to tackle the problem and come to a thoughtful solution for our clients.

Beyond that, I spend a lot of time trying to keep the engine running. We are a team of 150+ at GALE working on H&R Block alone, so I help ensure that the team has the proper context and tools to do their work.

2. You worked at a number of different agencies prior to joining GALE. What sets your experience here apart?

I have worked within Stagwell at different agencies for a few years. In some ways, it feels like working at those agencies was leading me to GALE all along. I started out at a creative agency and then moved into paid media. I saw the opportunity to move to GALE as a chance to bring those experiences together and think holistically about how to solve client problems. I have more tools in my toolbelt now and that allows me to think bigger and more strategically.  

3. How do you help bring creative storytelling to life through media?

Creative is usually the “what” in the “who, what, where” of the marketing equation; media is usually the “who” and the “where.” It’s the vehicle that brings the creative idea to the right person at the time we believe is most relevant for them to receive it.

A lot of media is about repetition - making sure the message is exposed enough times to make it stick, but storytelling happens when we catch the consumer’s attention and create a shift that makes them ready to make a choice or change.

4. How does your approach to paid and organic media differ?

It doesn’t! Paid and organic media are the same canvas we paint on to tell a brand’s story. Paid media allows us to force exposure to people who are not opting in or self-selecting to engage with a brand, so sometimes the things we choose to say in paid channels need to be different (broader, more straight-forward, with more context) but ultimately we hope that all of the parts work together and the sum becomes greater. The best case scenario is that we do such great work in paid channels to make people love our brand or product and that they become followers and advocates who seek out our owned channels and moments.

5. You have a lot of experience working with highly regulated industries. How has this impacted your strategy or approach?

In my experience, regulations and restrictions breed creativity. The abundance of choice can be paralyzing for creative teams. Boundaries force problem solving, which is where the best creative thinking happens.

6. You work closely with GALE’s H&R Block client. How have you helped grow the partnership?

H&R Block is a great example of a GALE success story. We service them across nearly every single GALE function (and we do it at scale). Growth with Block is just as you stated - it’s in the partnership. It’s not about scope, it’s about becoming strategic advisors to their business. My first focus is always delivering the work to the GALE standard: being thoughtful in how we solve problems, answer questions, and show work. After that, it’s all about finding ways to use the huge range of skills and services we have across the agency to be partners to the client’s business and go beyond their marketing department or media team.

The best measure of growth is when a client picks up the phone and says, “I have this problem and I don’t know if I am framing it correctly. How would you think about it?” Sometimes that is a media problem, but oftentimes it’s about how they are managing their own team, selling a new approach, or thinking about the business over the next six months, two years, or a decade…

7. When you’re not at work, you’re…

Visiting my friends and family as much as I can! Still trying to make up for the lost time during COVID and make sure I hold my people tight! We cannot do what we do without the support and fun we get from being around the people who love us.