This post is by Darren Woolley, Founder of TrinityP3. With his background as analytical scientist and creative problem solver, Darren brings unique insights and learnings to the marketing process. He is considered a global thought leader on agency remuneration, search and selection and relationship optimisation.
In a recent discussion on a creative pitch, the procurement team informed me that they needed to go to open tender as this was the mandated approach for the organisation. I pointed out the shortcomings of the open tender approach for selecting agencies and provided them this link to this article I had written on this topic.
But more convincing than all of the reasons not to run an open tender was demonstrating to them the breadth and depth of information we have on thousands of agencies of many different types in the TrinityP3 Agency Register. You can read more about the Agency Register here.
What are the alternatives?
Apart from running an open tender, there are a few alternatives to try out including:
- Go online and check out industry directories
- Contact Industry bodies for recommendations
- Read the Trade press to see who are in the headlines
- Search and check out a few agency websites
- Ask colleagues and peers for recommendations
- Send an RFI and ask the agencies
There is an article from back in 2012 that provides a full review of the options.
What do our competitors do?
Talking with some of our competitors and with agencies who have been through pitches with other consultants we have a view of our competitors’ capabilities in this area. It appears that:
- Some consultants rely on their personal knowledge of the market and recommend the agencies that are top of mind
- Some consultants do not make the time to meet with agencies face to face and rely on the agency’s reputation and trade press coverage alone
- One consultant is known to have the agencies complete a form, which they file. Others have upgraded this approach to include the details in an Excel spreadsheet
- Another has a group of graduates undertaking online research on the agencies and they then compile this into an agency profile which they sell to potential clients
But it appears that the TrinityP3 Agency Register is the only fully searchable online site that captures agency information including:
- Contact details – provides us with the details of the key point of contact
- Offices – allows for agencies to have one record with all of their offices or one record for each office
- Ownership – details on the size of the agency and the ownership
- Associations – lists the associations and industry bodies the agency supports or is a member of
- Philosophy / Market Positioning – provides an understanding of the culture, philosophy and how the agency positions itself against its competitors
- Key Personnel – lists all key personnel including links to their LinkedIn profiles
- Capabilities – a prioritised list of skills and capabilities across 12 categories
- Clients – lists all of the agency clients, their category and duration of the relationship
- Awards – lists all current awards won by the agency
- Work examples – allows the agencies to either upload work or provide links to examples of agency work
Plus our TrinityP3 consultants meet with the agencies face-to-face on a regular basis to check the details and provide personal insights into the agency culture and performance.
See it for yourself
Check with your agency to see if they are registered on the TrinityP3 Agency Register. Or if you want to see it for yourself, let us know. We are happy to do a market search to your brief so that you do not have to go to open tender, or miss an agency that just may be right for you just because you don’t know about them.
Let us know.
Over the past decade we have heavily invested time and money in our online agency register to ensure we have the most comprehensive and up to date information on the agencies and suppliers in each market.
This agency register contains information and details on agency key personnel, capabilities, clients, work, awards and financials. It also has observations and notes from the TrinityP3 consultants who visit agencies every week or work with agencies on reviews and negotiations.
So why do we do this?
Because the agency landscape, across all disciplines, is too large and complex to be left to someone’s memory or their opinion.
We use this agency register to ensure we provide the widest breadth of the market for consideration and not simply a handful of agencies that come to mind.
Try this quick exercise. Write down the name of eight experiential agencies in your market.
How about six media agencies that do not have conflicts with your business?
Harder than it seems. (Isn’t it?)
A bank approached us to help them find a specialist agricultural agency.
But they had no money. (Unusual for a bank?) So instead they prepared the list themselves from the advice and recommendations of staff and colleagues.
The list took almost a month to prepare and in the end they had seven agencies on their list.
But it was a waste of time.
Of the seven agencies recommended to them as agribusiness agencies, four had banking conflicts (go figure) and three did not even have agricultural experience. Leaving them with their incumbent.
So sure, you can make a list of agencies yourself.
But if you want the most comprehensive search of agencies suitable for your needs, no matter what the discipline, we can help you.
We don’t do it for free, because it is our business.
But we will make sure it is worth every cent.
(By the way – we found four, but they were the right four)
Find out more about the TrinityP3 Agency Register here