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Are advertising agencies the next big subscription-based model?

agency-subscription-model

This post is by Darren Woolley, Founder and Global CEO of TrinityP3With 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 optimising marketing productivity and performance across marketing agency and supplier rosters.

Let’s be honest, no one is happy with the current advertising agency fee models. Advertisers struggle with identifying the value. Agencies feel they need to discount to keep their clients. And procurement view agency fees as an opportunity to deliver savings.

So, let’s propose a new one that is based on the practices of the technology industry. They have disrupted the advertising industry and this model solves most of the problems of the current fee models.

Almost all of the new technology platforms are realising that to get consumers to part with their hard-earned cash on a transaction basis can be a real struggle. There is virtually no customer loyalty these days. To get customers to buy often requires offering some sort of discount or incentive and in the process sacrificing margins. So instead of getting customers to make a purchase decision every time they want to transact, the technology companies started offering a subscription model.

Just one simple monthly payment deducted from your bank account or credit card and you can access all the services you need. We can now pay subscription fees for everything from entertainment to food and even transport.

One of the reasons the subscription model is so successful is for most consumers that monthly deduction goes unnoticed. Payment is made monthly, no matter if services are utilised or not. Why wouldn’t this work for advertising agencies?

Introducing the Exclusive Agency Subscription Model*.

No more worrying about the number of FTEs in the retainer or having to cost the next 12 months of projects for budgeting. The pre-agreed Exclusive Agency Subscription Model* covers everything you need from your agency.

Unlike the traditional retainer, it is not about retaining agency people. It is subscribing to the agency to provide the marketing and advertising outputs you need on a monthly basis for your marketing plan. Instead of wondering if you are getting the people you are paying for, you get the people working on your brand, and the subscription pays for the work they do on your behalf. No more timesheet reconciliation trying to work out what the retained agency team actually did for you or how much time it took.

It is just like a retainer but only better as your monthly subscription pays for all the outputs you need.

And better than project fees, where the agency team would change on a project-by-project basis, the Exclusive Agency Subscription Model* means, when you take the subscription for a year or more, you have exclusive access to your agency account team for the term of your subscription.

Rather than being based on the agency people, the subscription level is based on what you need the agency to do for you: develop a new strategy – that is covered, plan and buy your next multimillion-dollar media campaign – that is covered too.

Changing your needs for the agency is no problem. The Exclusive Agency Subscription Model* will pivot and flex to your changing strategic needs because you are not locked into a retainer of people, you are subscribing to an exclusive agency service to deliver your needs.

But what’s the catch you ask?

Well there is a small catch. You don’t think the asterisk is there for nothing, do you? Buried in the fine print, way down in the terms and conditions, there is a clause titled Fair Use. This clause states “Depending on the level of your monthly subscription there is a maximum amount of outputs you can have the agency deliver in any month”. It does not let you do a Netflix binge one month and not subscribe the next. But then if you find your subscription falling short of your monthly needs then it is easy to simply top it up to a higher plan.

Each month you get a report of everything your subscription delivered for the month and the value that represents against your subscription cost – all independently measured and validated.

The Exclusive Agency Subscription Model* means you can have the agency resources you need without being locked into a retainer. The subscription service model is based on delivering the services you pay for, month in and month out. All you need to do is choose the level of subscription you need and the period of time you want to subscribe upfront and we will bill you. We can even help you decide on the Exclusive Agency Subscription Model* that is right for you based on your needs for the agency.

Yes, this is a new model and it is ready and waiting at an advertising, media or creative agency near you. Get all the convenience of a retainer plus the flexibility of a project fee. That’s the Exclusive Agency Subscription Model*.

* Subject to volume of work limitations per month

Sustainable agency remuneration is essential for running a profitable business. Find out how we can help you adopt a value and performance-based agency remuneration model

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Darren is considered a thought leader on all aspects of marketing management. A Problem Solver, Negotiator, Founder & Global CEO of TrinityP3 - Marketing Management Consultants, founding member of the Marketing FIRST Forum and Author. He is also a Past-Chair of the Australian Marketing Institute, Ex-Medical Scientist and Ex-Creative Director. And in his spare time he sleeps. Darren's Bio Here Email: darren@trinityp3.com

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