Agency Search & Selection:

Finding the Right Agency

Did you ever wonder why so many new agency relationships last fewer than 12 months? We track these things and the high failure rate concerns us. For many marketers, agency search has become an automated process seeking to identify the same old traditional markers of a successful relationship. These searches fail to properly identify key agency differences – differences that matter once the pitch process has concluded and the real work begins. Our search process is tailored to your unique situation and is focused on finding the right resource. We help you methodically define your needs and put those in a broader market context. Then we design a process aimed at finding the best potential agencies and clarifying their specific, meaningful differences. You are not just like every other marketer; your search approach should reflect that reality.

Compensation, Contract Terms, & Performance Metrics:

Negotiating the Right Deal

If you're like many of our clients, you want to be tough but fair with your agencies. You have high expectations. You are demanding; at times you can be a tough client to work for. But, you are also fair. Provided your agency delivers great work and results, you have no problem compensating them appropriately. But how exactly do you do that? We help you tackle the nitty—gritty questions like what to measure, what contract language to insist on, and what compensation models will work best for your situation. Then we go deeper and help you arrive at cost specifics that make sense in the context of industry norms and real agency costs. And, where it makes sense we tie compensation to performance. We help you arrive at the deal that's just what you wanted: tough but fair.

 

Agency Evaluation & Relationship Management:

Having the Right Relationship

All too often, frustrated or dissatisfied marketers fire their agencies and conduct a search for a new partner. Few consider the real financial impact of an agency review: the loss of efficiency over the 12 — 18 months it takes to onboard a new agency. With agency relationships growing shorter in duration and a significant number of agency reviews ending in disaster, we think the issue is not so much having the wrong partner but more about having the wrong relationship.

We believe agency evaluations are a foundation principle of effective client — agency relationship management. We help walk clients through healthy, constructive evaluations that identify and clarify key issues, which are sometimes hidden from view. We then help you tackle those issues head on, and provide critical support so the solutions can be sustained over time. Our relationship management efforts often produce a "Eureka" moment, and many relationships are transformed in a remarkably short period of time. And business results quickly follow.

Our web—based evaluations are powered by Decideware, the strategic supplier management tool of choice for marketers such as Burger King, Colgate, Dell, Kraft, Mars, Procter & Gamble, Target, SC Johnson and many others.

Corporate Marketing Department/Agency Roster Reengineering:

Building the Right Structure

The marketing function has been elevated at many companies extending far beyond its traditional confines of advertising and messaging development. Still, many marketing departments face increased budget pressures and are forced to look at doing more with less. Does your agency model and process need to be reengineered for today's marketing environment? What key roles should the client play, and how? Are there implications for the kinds of agencies you require – do you need a holding company solution? We leverage our deep experience and broad perspective to help you arrive at the right internal and external structure to achieve your business goals. And we help you get there quickly and in ways that work. We go beyond broad generalized solutions and dive into the details, because that's where you'll find the biggest impact on your top and bottom line.