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Ex-Isentia exec Hedvig Lyche launches strategy-focused consultancy The Core

The former global strategy boss of Isentia has officially launched a consultancy company in a bid to shift the content marketing industry away from the ‘production churn’.

Hedvig Lyche has teamed up with another former Isentia strategist Julia Mulcahy to launch The Core, a Singapore-based firm focused on content planning and helping clients “understand their reason to exist in the life of consumers”.

So far the pair have three clients: FMCG distributor Goodman Fielder, logistics firm DHL and RMIT University. 

The Core will not carry out any production or execution work, but will partner with Singapore-based production house Electric Lime Films should the project demand.

Speaking to Mumbrella about the venture, Lyche said: “[The Core] was borne out of the need to shift focus from a production and churn drive that content market seems to have taken lately and give it a reason to exist: so planning and strategy upfront for brands. Instead of looking at everything that’s around them.

“With clients and with King [Content] it was ‘we have to change for the environment’; change platforms or format – changes that didn’t really come from any deep insights.

“We are quite narrow in our scope and quite narrow in the way that we operate and the way that we work. We’re not doing a full-service, end-to-end ‘big agency’ structure ever.”

She added: “Our job is to help brands understand their reason to exist in the life of consumers.”

Lyche, a former planner at MullenLowe Profero, first joined what-was-then-known as King Content in Singapore in January 2015. Eight months later, the global agency was bought by Isentia in a deal worth a reported $48m. 

Last year, following a several turbulent months, Isentia decided to axe the King Content brand altogether leading to Lyche’s departure, followed by lay-offs of the remaining content division.

Speaking about the future of content marketing agencies like King Content, Lyche said she expected more brands and clients to take the production side in-house.

“We do recognise that clients want to have ownership of the content and production,”  she explained. “I think agencies that just churn content for content’s sake will disappear. I had one client tell me he can get that content made for $10 in India. It hurts my ears a little bit, but it’s the truth.

“Agencies will need to be more focused on core expertise rather than try and be everything to everyone. I do think brands are recognising the need for content ownership and technology. The big companies are building these in-house, and will use the agencies for specific services. That’s just the big players now, but I think it will trickle down.”

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