Read the Q&A with Keith Artnett. To learn more about Reformation Productions, visit www.reformationproductions.com.
What inspired you to begin your business?
B. Zachary Bennett, the principal behind Reformation Productions, was working as an executive at an agency in Knoxville, TN when a local business called into his office. Having spent 20+ years of his career working to grow major companies like Bank of America, The Limited, The Air Force Reserve, Cracker Barrell, Lowe’s Home Improvement, BP and more, the call was did not surprise him. From time to time, businesses would contact the agency to pursue a partnership. When this happened, there was a certain process the call would be passed through casually. It includes a common screening question – “What is your budget?” You see, when a business is competing for the time of a national agency, the size of their budget can help determine if they can afford to work with the agencies who hold the wisdom and creativity they seek. The business could not compete with the budgets of their large and national clients and was therefore redirected.
But shortly after the call, Mr. Bennett thought to himself, “There is a niche here.” If he could provide a way for local and regional businesses to afford the same quality and professional marketing that has been afforded Fortune 500 companies by these agencies, he would be able to travel less while serving the business community in ways that he could be proud of. You see, he had spent numerous years traveling across the country, 3 and 4 days out of the week, because he held a rare gift for seeing opportunities and implementing both strategies and creative for clients. So he started his own agency, Reformation Productions.
Who was your first client?
The Agency’s first client was a restaurant in Braselton called Key West Bar & Grill.
Where did you begin your business?
We were started in the bottom level of the founder’s home. That floor was eventually expanded to include full recording studio, video and photography studio, conference room, and employee areas. Since then, the company has moved to its current location in historic downtown Buford, GA.
What piece of advice would you tell your self when you started out? Any success tips you want to share?
B. Zachary Bennett does a lot of speaking engagements for the SBDC, SCORE, various Chambers of Commerce, and other organizations, at least before the pandemic. We’ve also started a podcast in the last couple of years. I believe it would have been advantageous to have started those elements sooner. He just released his first business book called “Married To Marketing; a relationship guide to business” which is available on Amazon and his website, BZacharyBennett.com/M2M. He has a passion for educating and helping small business but it took him a while to move out in front of the agency. When we started out, he was the man behind the scenes. Now, he’s a leader in the business community. So my advice there would be to never be afraid to put yourself out there and dedicate yourself to what you do best.
The other element I think we should have done sooner would be to have devoted more time and investment into building out our digital footprint. The digital landscape is not going away but no one knew just how important it would eventually become. If we had jumped in on the ground floor of some of our current technology, who knows what could have happened. The advice there would be to take advantage of new technology around you as soon as you can so that you can be an early adopter and therefore more experienced than others in later years.
What are you most proud of?
Our agency has won many awards over its life span. But I’m most proud of how we are dedicating to helping our clients with passion and creativity. We really believe in doing what’s best for our client brands and putting our all into our efforts.
Anything else interesting that you want to share?
I recommend all business owners, whether early in their journey or having many years of experience, check out Zachary’s book “Married To Marketing.” It’s written for business owners, entrepreneurs, and other professionals that are looking for an in-depth understanding of the marketing process and the relative business commitment to your customers as it is correlated to the relationships of people.
Most everyone understands the fundamental basics of courtship and companionship through marriage in our society. B. Zachary Bennett takes this relationship and draws insightful parallels with building and growing a business. The book shares information and explanations in a very understandable manner.