Inside PIABO: Dominik Kratzenberg about close costumer ties and the innovative minds shaping our future
Dominik Kratzenberg always has a friendly smile on his face, is a real team player and creative mind, who values a good and above all cooperative customer relationship. He has accompanied many of his clients for several years, growing into an excellently coordinated team – trusted partners. The family man of a two-year-old son is a well-esteemed Communications Director, responsible for clients like the Belgian start-up cowboy, the largest online portal for professional product testing Testberichte.de, or the travel app of omio. In the current blog series "Inside PIABO: Our longest-serving employees" he tells about the experiences that have shaped him along with his personal growth at PIABO.
My journey at PIABO started as Senior Account Manager in February 2017. But I have actually known the agency for much longer. The first time I ever heard about our founder Tilo Bonow was during my studies. In those days my former fellow student from Vienna told me about her vivid internship here in Berlin and raved about the innovative clients and the modern way of working. Oh what a dynamic mix of digital natives and experienced employees, she told me, a various team with different backgrounds such as corporate communications and journalism in one team. All of them motivated to bring innovation into society. Since then I wanted to be a part of this agency.
A warm welcome in cold winter times
My new job and my girlfriend made me finally move to Berlin, and quit my latest job at a large network agency in Munich. It was cold day in winter, Berlin so "beautifully" grey, and the people on the tram were correspondingly happy. Luckily, this rather cool and distant impression changed immediately when I entered the bright and warm office of PIABO, at that time still in Weinmeisterstraße. Everyone was very friendly, open-minded and welcoming. A big THANK YOU again to my dear colleagues, who made me feel like home quite quickly, right in the capital. Not much later I already had my first tasks. After a thorough onboarding session I felt empowered, so many cool tools to explore. And shortly afterwards my Unit Director Simone introduced me to my first customer: Hotelchamp, a smart booking software that hoteliers use all over the world to leverage their direct bookings in order to become more independent of OTAs such as Booking.com. In fact, the start-up from Amsterdam was a perfect match for the experience I had gained during my time in the tourism industry, working for Hilton Hotels. Being aware of the challenges hotels faced in turning website visitors into paying and returning guests I intuitively understood how the platform generates added value for the industry. A perfect match on the first day!
Dominik Kratzenberg and his team colleague Carolina Osses carry out very successful data PR for the long-standing client Testberichte.de
Defining the trends of tomorrow
I have had a keen interest in technological innovations since my childhood. What fascinates me about tech companies is that they constantly improve and reinvent themselves through their creative and innovative work. Companies that are part of the digital industry are particularly as they are driving technological progress at breakneck speed. It is also this dynamic that fascinates me. At PIABO, we not only accompany this change but are part of it. And we further continue to grow simultaneously with the progression of digitalization. Having a hands-on mindset and a personal interest in all these topics definitely helps to keep up with the speed. But I can surely say that we are all intrinsically engaged with our clients, hence, we have a motivated workforce which is reflected in our agency climate and in the way we collaborate.
Close customer ties and genuine "sparring partnership”
With many of my clients I work at partnership level. We have grown together and they even make me feel like being part of the team. Having such a special relationship to my clients makes a huge difference in my daily work and I have a personal motivation to go the extra mile. I really enjoy coming to work, thanks to these amazing partnerships, but also thanks to my wonderful colleagues and the great teamwork. Most of my clients either come from the consumer electronics sector or offer a digital solution to an everyday problem. Actually, most of them are very hands-on and can be easily integrated while providing high efficiency. Therefore I can easily understand the benefits. Be it for the electric bike designed by the Belgian start-up cowboy, the sustainable online shop of Galaxus, the travel app of omio or the well-known productivity application of Evernote. I think it's great how brands add value to our society by making everyday tasks easier and less complicated. This is also why my personal interest in these topics goes beyond my professional life: I actually take advantage of many of my customers' offers myself and, for example, drive to work with my "Cowboy" every day.
PIABO CEO Tilo Bonow and Dominik Kratzenberg at our office warming party in 2019
A culture that encourages personal responsibility
Compared to other agencies I've worked for, everything is a bit faster at PIABO. This dynamic brings a certain amount of personal responsibility but similarly motivates to contribute with own ideas. At the same time, it also gives us the freedom to organise our everyday work according to our individual needs – something that has often been to my advantage as a family man. And if you do need help, I will find many cordial and above all capable colleagues in the team, who greatly enrich the daily work. At PIABO, we learn a lot from each other – from every employee, at every level. Besides valuable experiences and contacts for life, I have gained a lot of self-confidence through my work. Countless times I had to prove myself in new customer meetings, interviews, or pitches and can therefore say that the learning curve at PIABO is particularly high. However, for me, it is still motivating to know that the end of the curve has not yet been reached and that I can constantly develop further with the agency and my clients.