Managing Marketing: The profession of advertising compared to management consultants

John Oldfield is the Ambassador for Worldwide Partners, a global network of independent agencies. He was also the Membership Director for the IPA in the UK. Here he discusses with Darren the difference between a trade and a profession and how as a Chartered Profession the IPA is providing a professional accreditation program for advertising professionals globally. They also compare advertising and management consulting identifying some key differences. Continue reading

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Important questions before taking media in-house

In the face of ad fraud, brand safety and viewability issues, many marketers are considering taking some or all of their media in-house. Are you? Technology and media innovation is making this more feasible. But is it right for you? Depending on the market, the size of the media spend and and the media mix, there appears to be four options for advertisers when it comes to media, either in-house or outsourced. Continue reading

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The biggest challenges you will face when rationalising your agency roster

At some point most marketers managing a significant sized budget will question if they really do need all of the agencies and suppliers they have collected on their roster. It is only natural. In fact a common question we often get asked is “how many agencies should I have on my roster?” The next questions is usually “What is the best way to structure and manage them?” Continue reading

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Pitfalls to avoid when losing a pitch.

God knows, pitching is hard on agencies. To be honest, it’s hard on everyone, but the diligence required to make an informed and holistic decision about a commercial relationship of this nature naturally requires a lot of work. When agencies win pitches, they are naturally ecstatic. And why not? It’s payback for the sheer hard work that’s gone in. Continue reading

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How To Manage The Politics of Agency Search

Corporate politics on an agency pitch is something marketers don’t often talk about and rarely like to admit. But like it or not, politics can – and do – have an effect on some pitch processes. And while politics may be obvious in some cases, they can also be subtle but potentially just as damaging. Some of the hallmarks and pitfalls of an agency search process that is experiencing political influence could be some or all of the following: Continue reading

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Managing Marketing: The changing role and challenges facing media agencies

David Angell is the General Manager and Head of Media at TrinityP3 and here he chats with Darren on the increasingly complex role played by media agencies and the challenges they face in meeting the needs and demands of their advertiser clients. As intermediaries between advertisers and the media providers they are increasingly challenged with not just managing this complex relationship but also contributing to overall marketing performance too. Continue reading

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The mismanaged creative agency pitch

There was a creative pitch many years ago for Stanley Cook, manufacturer of Titan Nails at the time, later sold to BHP and then Otter Group. Anyway they briefed six creative agencies, about three too many, to come up with an ad campaign over the weekend to encourage builders and tradesmen to choose the Titan brand over the cheaper Asian nail imports. On the Monday morning the agencies filed in one after the other to present to the Managing Director, the Marketing Director and the Head of Sales at the time. Each agency had had basically three days to put a campaign together and 45 mins to present it to the senior management of Stanley Cook Limited. Continue reading

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Who’s In Charge? Marketing or Procurement?

Whether you’re a client looking for marketing services, or an agency pitching your wares, the question of who’s really calling the shots can be a pivotal one. On the one hand, the organisational perspective might be that marketing teams are evaluated on and are seeking things like improved performance, chemistry harmony between teams and agencies, creative brilliance and / or strategic smarts. Continue reading

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Yes, advertising agencies exaggerate their award entries – Poll result

Recent reports in the trade media have raised questions over the accuracy of the award entries of a particular multi-award winning agency. In fact it appears that this agency has continued to win awards overseas with questionable and inaccurate claims. Now the agency CEO has stepped aside it is time to discuss the implications this has for agencies, the industry and their clients. Accusations of behaviour like this undermines trust, not only in the agency involved, but the award process and the industry at large.Excerpts are optional hand-crafted summaries of your content that can be used in your theme. Learn more about manual excerpts. Continue reading

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Is it time marketers rethink agency competitive conflicts of interest?

A major and complex issue for marketers when looking for new agencies, or going to market with a tender, is concerns over conflict of interest. That is, not wanting to select an agency that already has a client that is a competitor. But what constitutes a competitive conflict will vary from advertisers to advertiser and category to category. It will also increasingly vary as the relationships between advertisers and their agencies evolve. Some categories are incredibly broad in what constitutes a conflict, such as financial services or alcoholic beverages, and therefore can quickly limit the choice of agencies without conflicts. Continue reading

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7 ways you might be demotivating your existing agencies

All marketing teams – naturally – want enthusiastic, committed and motivated agencies working alongside them to improve their business performance. In attempting to get to that ideal end-state, however, marketing teams can underestimate – or miss completely – the effects their actions often have on the motivation of their existing agencies. Here are seven of the easiest ways to demotivate an agency team. Have you ever been guilty of any of them? Continue reading

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When is the right time to set an Engagement Agreement? – Three case studies

Engagement Agreements are an effective way of defining the ways of working between advertisers and their agencies. One of the best times to undertake the process of defining the relationship and the expectations of both parties is at the beginning of the relationship, rather than waiting for things to either go wrong or for poor practices and misalignments to become major issues. Continue reading

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The ethics of Client / Agency behaviour: What is acceptable and what is not?

At the inaugural Mumbrella Asia 360 earlier this month Julian Barrans, Asia Business director and I curated a session on client / agency behaviour based around real life examples of dubious incidents we had either witnessed or had heard about from reliable sources. We put these to the audience to gauge what is acceptable today and what is not. The world of marketing, media and advertising is changing rapidly, especially driven by technology innovation, which is multiplying opportunities and options and magnifying pressure and demands. But has this impacted the way we work together? And if so how? Continue reading

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How to know if you need to pitch your agency

I often get asked by our clients to see them ‘about running an agency pitch’. The decision to pitch, for whatever reason, is generally already taken by the time they speak to me. Yet sometimes, based on what I hear, my advice is ‘actually, don’t pitch’, for a number of reasons. Reviewing an agency can often be an intuitive reaction to a given situation, change or perception. But, of course, this doesn’t always make ‘pitching’ the best option. Loss of IP, disruption to your BAU communications, internal stress and diversion of resource, and the risk of ‘new relationships with the same problems’ are all challenges associated with making the decision to go to market for something shiny and new. Continue reading

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What happens when the best agencies are no longer interested in pitching for your business?

Recently we have read reports from the CEO of WPP, Sir Martin Sorell and even our own Executive Chairman, Michael Farmer, talking about the almost irrational motivation of agencies to pitch for and win business at any cost. Certainly, with so many agencies in the market, you would think there is no shortage of candidates to pitch for an advertisers business. But the fact is that not all agencies are equal, yes, some are more equal, or perhaps more desirable than others. In any market there are a handful of agencies that are considered outstanding and then there are the others and behind them the ‘also-rans’. Continue reading

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