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Meet Consensus Interactive of the South End

Today we’d like to introduce you to James Burke.

James, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Founded in 2011, we created a digital agency based on a core set of values and turned them into a single aspiration – build the best experiences possible.

We assembled a group of thinkers, dreamers, and doers. We’ve built great experiences, but we know our best work lies ahead of us. We leave our egos at the door because we’ve all done great things. We think all ideas are in play, and that a great idea can come from anyone. We don’t shy away from long hours or hard problems to solve because we love a challenge. Building the best experiences is what we’re all about. It’s what drives us. It’s what keeps us pushing limits. And it’s what satisfies us when we see goals met, return on investment achieved, a new product launched, or an old brand re-invented. We walk the same streets as our users. We get them, and more importantly, we get our clients.

We have experienced tremendous year-over-year growth and we are grateful for our amazing clients – all of whom are seeking a next generation experience with names such as Boston Children’s Hospital, Tufts Health Plan, Golf Channel, IDEXX and Lifespan to name a few.

We took a strategic step forward at the end of 2015 by investing in user journey research and omni-channel marketing. We added three key services including Content Marketing, Marketing Automation and Decision Sciences – the investment in these areas have yielded amazing dividends.

While headquartered in Boston, Consensus has offices Orlando, Florida and partners in Brussels, Belgium; Lviv, Ukraine and Taipei, Taiwan that translates into 24×7 support and tremendous financial value to our clients.

Has it been a smooth road?
Building an organization from a “profit funded” model is always challenging. Luckily, this is my second digital agency and several important factors have allowed us to avoid the “struggles”.

First, we were able to start with a talented core. I worked with several of our key/senior employees Shena Lowe (managing partner), Erica Rai (creative director) and Lauren Nolan (senior manager) at a previous company. This provided a tremendous head start for our organization.

Second, we try hard to hire “smart creatives” – teammates who are not only amazingly bright and talented, but who can also provide business value to our clients.

Lastly, we seek employees and clients who share the same core values as our overall organization. We truly believe this is key to our success.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Consensus Interactive – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
In a sentence, we obsess over research and creating amazing experiences for our clients. While this has grown over the years from websites and mobile devices to the expanded user journey – we are always trying to develop a persuasive platform that authentically connects with our clients’ audience. It’s the authenticity that makes a difference to the user.

Our thinking is supported by six important areas of our organization – research (ethnographic based, user journeys, a day in the life, micro moments), omni-channel focused content marketing, creative (digital branding, IA/UX), emerging technologies (web, app and newly added IoT things development), media planning/marketing automation and decision sciences.

Without hesitation, we are most proud of our culture – internally (our team) and externally (with clients). While we live it each and every day in the office, it becomes even more apparent during an offsite event – the level of genuine laughter is loud and infectious. We seek the same type of relationships with our clients. We all work so incredibly hard – take the time to appreciate every minute.

In terms of our differentiator, it’s the fact we work hard to be true ‘thought partners’ to our clients The folks at Google coined a term “smart creatives” and we look for that same type of resource regardless of the area of the company. Every team member is encouraged to try new assignments (even if it is outside of his/her comfort zone) and to come up with ideas that will bring business value to every aspect of a client’s project.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I cannot say enough great things about the city of Boston. It is a vibrant innovation hub – a city of great minds. The available talent for hire is abundant and the number of new business opportunities changes daily (oh, and the sports teams are pretty good too).

The least likely part is easy – traffic! It is getting worse and worse!

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