Brand and marketing executive Pete Leacock is focusing on increasing digital solutions in his role leading strategic initiatives to solve clients' business problems as a vice president/account director at Minneapolis creative agency Knock Inc.

Leacock, who joined Knock in July, has nearly two decades in leading integrated accounts at agencies including Fallon and Carmichael Lynch. He most recently was a global brand communication manager at 3M.

"I'm most excited about bringing my digital experience into this agency," he said.

His responsibilities include helping lead Knock's account management and project management teams. Knock's independence appealed to Leacock after his experience at holding company agencies. He said it allows Knock "to be nimble and solve client problems with solutions that are most beneficial to the clients' needs without any agenda."

Leacock, who has worked on diversity and inclusion teams in past roles, said they are inherent in Knock's culture as a female- and minority-owned agency. President and CEO Lili Hall founded Knock in 2001.

Q: What are your priorities?

A: One is to further develop how we solve complex business problems for our clients, to work on everything from blue-chip clients to small, independent clients to startups. My opportunity, as I see it, is to help build those businesses and get us thinking even more strategically about where we can take our clients. Another opportunity is how do we best position Knock and market ourselves toward the future and attract even more clients based on a strong track record in building brands and growing brands and starting to lean nicely into digital but also in terms of retaining talent.

Q: What does being a full-experience agency mean?

A: It can be experiences in the physical world where we're meeting consumers on their terms but also doing the same thing across digital, delivering on the expectations that they have of a brand and solving problems. Blending the two and not looking at them in silos, but making sure that everything has the components necessary to provide a true experience to consumers.

Q: What is a differentiator for Knock?

A: Knock's ability to turn work around quickly. I'm not talking about simple one-offs but everything from strategy to execution. I attribute much of this to Knock's deep retail roots and a sworn oath to collaboration. It's not often you find a shop that can move quickly with such a keen eye toward quality. It's been very refreshing to work in an environment where positive client/business results take precedence over industry awards.

Todd Nelson is a freelance writer in Lake Elmo. His e-mail is