Designed by Creatives for Creatives


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A time to work smart

“I feel amazingly optimistic” said my American client. “This is a day I never thought would come. I feel a sense of history being made.”
Yes, you’ve guessed it, we were talking about the brand new developments at Visual Approval, with Project Management capability being added to the proven creative process management tool. Two great systems in one? Simply historic.
I’ve been hearing this a lot lately, as we demo the new system to initially sceptical creative agencies. When they discover it’s all real, the conversation turns into a sales chat because we’re in the business of generating customers as well as friends. And that’s the point, it’s not personal, it’s business.
For us, that’s the way it’s always been. Bob Coleman, Visual Approval’s founder, is a generous guy but he hasn’t invested £150,000 in the development of the system because of altruism. He’s a businessman with a total understanding of what the industry needs. VA helps everyone do business better. It saves money. Avoids errors. Attracts clients.
For creatives, the appeal is instinctive. It quickly becomes obvious that the system was invented by other creatives. Bob Coleman is one of the most visionary designers the industry has ever seen and he likes to focus his time on designing, not admin. VA was a personal aid for Bob and everyone in his creative team, as it dramatically improves communication with clients, speeds up the approval process and ensures there is never any uncertainty about who said what and when. Thankfully, Bob likes to share.
For all clients the ability for them to be hands-on in the creative process is mouth-wateringly appealing. For international clients or any client with decision-makers on multiple sites, the benefits are even bigger. It’s a colossal understatement to say that VA speeds up the creative process and in many cases it enables complex campaigns with tight deadlines to happen at all.
They used to say that the great thing about being a creative is that you start every project with a blank sheet of paper. The fun is in inventing something from nothing. The difference now is that there’s no paper, just a blank screen.
Everything’s changed and everything’s the same. We now rely on technology to make it all work. But we remain dependent on dialogue with our clients to approve what we do. That dialogue can now be virtual and everything is done online.
The recent plaudits, which are driving this Obama-like excitement, come from agency suits not creatives. Getting the brief right, developing budgets, allocating tasks, managing the entire process and organising billing floats their client service boat. Analysing productivity and increasing efficiency puts the gloss on it all. When a suit smiles, you know that a new angel has arrived in heaven.
The world has gone a little crazy lately. Big brands have disappeared, others are on the brink. It appears as if some things we used to take for granted can no longer be trusted. Nothing is certain and anything is possible.
It is human nature that we all look for visionaries, for magic solutions to seemingly impossible problems. Suddenly the gargantuan expectations on a new era focus on Obama-inspired economic recovery in the US and its rapid transfer to our shores. And given that this all kicked-off with sub-prime manic lending in the States, it’s fair to say they owe us.
But to survive in the here and now, we all have to be real. Do what we do better. Increase productivity. Decrease error. Find new customers by giving them what they want.
It’s the old dilemma. Producing inspiring creative ideas is the raison d’etre for most of us being in the business. And it’s the compelling competitive difference which enables clients to distinguish between us. But the innovative thinking has to be wrapped up with best practice rock solid systems. When times are so tough, we need to be passionately inventive but we need to work smart.
No one is going to do this for us. As Barack Obama says, this is a time for all of us to take responsibility, step up, and move on.

Tony Casson
Development Director,

Visual Approval - Online proofing & Job Management for the Creative Industry
1-3 Gravel Lane
M3 7 WQ
Hi Tony, welcome to the forum.

Your sales spiel could do with a few more line breaks on those paragraphs, it's just a wall of text.

Hmm Prices seem way high! GetSignOff is cheaper even at their full level than your cheapest option.
What you get for your money

Hello Kev,

I appreciate your comments, and there are other online approval software solutions out there. However with VA you are buying to a complete virtual agency, all work is archived in individual jobs spaces, that remains online for both you and your clients in the future. It also allows project management, task assignment, time recording, billing and job costing, with full reports on all these features.

All of this is included in the one price - not that bad for £99 month.

If you would like an online demo please feel free to give me a call.