Sveta headshot

Wednesday Agency

Sveta Doucet, Global President

When you talk to Sveta Doucet, it becomes clear how Wednesday Agency is able to seamlessly tap into markets in 81 countries. As global president of the company, she knows what it takes – and what it truly means – to go international. You'll understand what we mean when you read up on her career path, not to mention the way she handled a global business amid a pandemic. Read on to learn what Sveta is feeling optimistic about this year, plus advice for marketing and comms pros to thrive in 2021 and beyond. 

What does Wednesday Agency do?

We are a full-service creative and production agency that builds brand worlds and experiences for the luxury, beauty and fashion sectors.

How does the agency differentiate itself in the field?

Our orientation is around impact-making, not image making so everything we do is about understanding the tangibility of the actions we create for brands. Secondly, we are a boutique at scale – as we are the only creative agency with access to over 81 countries, with our holding company relationship. This means we are able to feel hyper-nuanced in any market but also maintain the craft through a boutique offering. 

What does your role there entail?

I lead Wednesday from a strategic and commercial perspective, which starts with setting the vision for the team and continuing to deliver against it. For our brand partners, it’s about creating the world in which they can lead through being distinctive and culturally salient.

Tell us briefly about your career trajectory to get to your current position.

I grew up as an expat and have lived (and worked) in over 7 countries – so I always knew I wanted to do something that felt inherently global. I took a stab at global policy work working alongside (ahem, below) the likes of Fareed Zakaria, in Washington, D.C., but my creative heart wasn’t satisfied. I found myself seated on a flight to India, next to an incredibly impressive female media executive, who then introduced me to someone else on the same flight in the creative/media field, while we were waiting for bags in the crowded Delhi airport. Two weeks later, I resigned from my paying job and took a role as an intern with the folks I met in the airport. Best decision I ever made.

I decided to train in creative strategy and honed my craft specifically around the luxury, fashion and beauty sectors but with a deep understanding of the post-digital world. Wednesday Agency is the home I’ve been looking for. 

Tell us about your experience of running a business on a global level, during almost a year of the pandemic. What have been the biggest challenges and learnings? Any unexpected silver linings?

The biggest challenge has been managing the uncertainty – not just for my business but for our brand partners. But what was quickly revealed to me, at the beginning of the pandemic was more than just that my team is resilient but incredibly innovative – from the way we connect, to the way we share work, to the content we’re creating, to how quickly we can turn things around. We also haven’t lost a beat and productivity doesn’t feel like a churn, it feels fun. Additionally, the risk threshold has recalibrated, so I suppose the silver lining is that our brand partners are open to hearing and trying new ways of working and creating, because it is a really whole new world.

How has Covid impacted the luxury sector and what factors do you think will be critical in its successful re-emergence in the post-Covid world?

The idea of experience has been re-oriented towards digital experiences but I don’t think we’ll see the pendulum swing completely back. Digital will continue to drive growth and engagement and brands will continue to innovate across the entire consumer journey. A flashy campaign alone, will not longer do. Secondly, the role of purpose will continue to be emphasized, as consumers will remember what you did and how you led them through these unprecedented times. 

Are you seeing continued awareness and growth of sustainability as a business imperative?

Transparency is the new business imperative and I suppose sustainability is a facet of that. As consumers are starting to evaluate their brand relationships through what they buy into, and what it says about them as a consumer, their mindset is also shifting to “is this worth it” – what kind of impact is my action making or taking. 

Diversity, equity and inclusion were given much more focus this year, due to the much-needed push for racial equity. Now that this is in focus, how are companies putting it into practice going forward?

I am one of the very few BIPOC leaders amongst luxury and beauty creative agencies, so I’ve definitely let out a deep breath of relief but also a personal mission to continue to drive an agenda around inclusion. Diversity sits at the heart of how we shape all of our work behind and in front of the camera and we always ensure that a) we find opportunities for diverse audiences to get involved and b) that the people both in front and behind the camera are representative of what we’re trying to make and do. However, I do not think it’s enough to “add diversity” to the team or an idea – it’s a mindset that is grounded in different while maybe harder, is better.

How can companies (including both brands and agencies) future-proof themselves?

Move fast. Focus less on product and services and orient towards impact. Diversify talent. 

Why should we be optimistic about the coming year?

Everything! I’m most excited for all the communications innovations that will emerge.

What’s your best piece of advice for people in marketing and comms, to thrive in the year ahead?

Get really, really, really good at your craft every day and nurture your network.

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