My favorite part of any initial client meeting, is the part where they ask where the name, “Nelson Cash” came from. It almost always frames the rest of the meeting in a favorable tone.
For us, Nelson Cash was born out of a personification of the agency we wanted to become. We loved the naming convention of [name] & [name] though Titus & Ratner seemed too presumptuous, but there’s something about that convention.
We started looking at what type of agency we wanted to become. As a team, we began by looking at our past experiences. What were the flaws of agencies past? What made them flail? What made them lose (clients and employees)? We also looked at what we liked. What made sense. What worked. A proverbial list was made as to what we were going to do differently and what we were going to emulate in order to succeed.
First and foremost, the very heart and soul of this agency, we decided to implement a straight-forward honest approach, even when it was uncomfortable. Amongst ourselves we adopted the tagline, “Eliminate the bullshit.” Throughout the agency world, we saw firsthand the plight of not being honest with oneself, with each other and with your clients. We chose to posture less and be experts more… and it’s paying off.
Going along with that, we wanted to do amazing work for our clients that wasn’t sacrificed by our own egos or sheer ignorance of what we were doing. It’s easy to read a blog and regurgitate information, but it’s a much larger challenge to actually become an expert within an industry. Being the smartest person in the room is often easy, but we’re striving to become the smartest people in the field. In light of that, we’ve chosen to continue educating ourselves to constantly be building a deeper understanding of the field, the market and our clients’ markets.
Based on those two primary factors, we sought out names that exemplified who our agency was. Were we to point out two people who personified our ideal studio, who would they be? Over drinks 96 stories above Chicago, a multitude of names hit the table, and finally we nailed it down to none other than Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash. Uncomfortably honest and at the top of their game without sacrificing themselves to do it… everything we strive to be and are becoming. Both of these guys marched to the beat of their own drums; they found out how to succeed on their own terms, completely different from the status quo.
Oh!… and a final word before wrapping this up: don’t read too much into the illustration… we’re not tax evaders and pill-poppers… just individuals with big ambitions and killer work ethics to get us there.
- Roman Titus