Quality? Cost? Time? Which do you want from improving your marketing performance?

It used to be that when it came to production there was quality, cost and time and that you could have any two. That is you could have high quality in a short timeframe but it would cost you. Or you could have a short timeframe and low cost but at the expense of quality. However technology is changing this, enabling the production of a high volume of high quality digital assets in near real time and at relatively low unit cost. But the distinction of Quality, Cost and Time is an important one in marketing and advertising today and not for production but for all aspects of performance improvement. Continue reading

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Why Squeezing More From Your Agency Can Be A Really Bad Idea

Are you a marketer that wants to squeeze more from your agency? Do you feel like they should be doing more? Delivering better results? Turning things around faster? All sound like good ideas, right? So if like most marketers you’d find these kinds of attributes desirable from your agency(s), then read on. Continue reading

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Confused About the Advertising Industry? Who Isn’t? Read On!

Holding company shares are falling. Their ad agencies are shrinking, with low morale, low salaries and hiring freezes. Accenture and Deloitte are the new, growing competitors. Advertisers are cutting spend but investing in-house. Chief Creative Officers are disappearing, not entirely due to sexual harassment charges. Confused by some or all of this? Read on! Continue reading

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The best advice I was ever given was….(From the TrinityP3 Consultants)

With social media there are now more opportunities than ever to read or head career or business advice for free. Log in to LinkedIn, browse business groups, subscribe to newsletters and there it will be, business and career advice from someone you may know, may know of by reputation or not know at all. And the advice? Continue reading

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Leadership Trials of the Agency CEO

We don’t get to pick the era we live in.  We’re human, though, and we dream about other times and other places.  Given a choice, today’s agency CEOs might dream about turning back the clock sixty years or so, when the world — and the ad agency within it — was much simpler and a lot more fun. Television was new and growing in 1958.  There were only 40 million TV households (today’s number is 120 million) and the agency’s creative challenge was how to get better at TV and print — and grow even faster than the post-war economy.   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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When is agile marketing not Agile Marketing?

I love a buzzword as much as the next person, which is why I love working in marketing. Some of my favourites include, gamification, amplification, customer-centricity, authenticity, influencer and agile marketing. Wait, what? Agile marketing isn’t a buzzword, it’s a genuine go to market strategy that has been transported across from the world of software development and is now being successfully utilised across marketing teams from education to garden centres. Isn’t it? Continue reading

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We’re Like Collaborating, Right?

Marketers often tell us they’re a “collaborative” organisation or they’re a “collaborative” team. Agencies tell us they’re “collaborative” working with other agencies. But when it comes down to it, I’m not sure either marketers or agencies really understand what being “collaborative” really means or how to apply the term to their respective activities. Continue reading

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Ten common problems with agency retainers

Reading the trade media on the trend towards agency project fees, you would think that the agency retainer is dead, (along with the Agency of Record). And while the ANA Agency Compensation Survey shows that the retainer is not as common as it once was, it still accounts for a significant proportion of major agency remuneration models and is well and truly alive and well. But lets be honest, while the agency retainer is often set and forget, it has a few problems especially with the way many of these retainers are set up and managed. In fact while many advertisers and their agencies often default to the retainer model it has more problems then most are willing to recognise. Makes you wonder why it became so popular in the first place. Continue reading

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Top 5 dumb ways to use data in marketing

With the implementation of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), and the Facebook / Cambridge Analytica data scandal, data privacy and usage is a pretty hot topic. So strap yourself in. Here we go. Continue reading

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How Ready Are You For Agency Pay For Performance?

When it comes to assessing, reassessing or creating new agency contracts, most marketers now ask us about structuring some kind of pay for performance terms as part of their overall agreement. But coming up with a pay for performance model is actually the easy part. The hard part is ensuring our clients are corporately prepared for what pay for performance really means, the implications for managing such agreements and how they need to be administered. Continue reading

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Lower Cost Does Not Mean Higher Quality in the Ad Industry

If we were on a guided tour of the advertising industry, here are the points of interest that ought to be on every sightseer’s list. 1) The Advertisers.  “Lower cost” is their strategy du jour, with reductions in media spend, cuts in agency fees, continued use of cost benchmarks and investments in less expensive internal agencies.  Amazing!  Increased shareholder value — marketing with the stroke of a pen, crossing out columns of unnecessary figures. Continue reading

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Managing Marketing: Talking digital, innovation and CX for business

Erik Ingvoldstad, the CEO and Founder of Acoustic Group talks with Darren about their focus on helping companies manage their digital transformation from a cultural foundation, discover innovation within the organisation and manage the customer experience as a way of building brand. He brings a unique perspective with experience in the Army, business school and years in digital and direct marketing. 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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