edition 45 february 24, 2006

selecting a creative agency

Selecting the right creative agency is one of the most important decisions a marketer makes. The profile of the advertising output and the importance in relationship, skill and fit in delivering maximum cut-through and value cannot be underestimated. This week Darren Woolley discusses the critical issues marketers should take into consideration when selecting a creative agency.

In this P3 e-news...
- things to consider when selecting a creative agency
- 3 effective ways to manage your tv productions costs
- p3tv workshops coming in may
- health check your dm activities

things to consider when selecting a creative agency

size and location

How big or important do you want your account to be within the agency? Dominating the agency could mean that you end up funding the infrastructure that others benefit from, while being one of the smaller clients may mean that you may be overlooked at times. There are three things to consider:

1. What are the other clients at the agency?
2. How demanding are these other clients? Eg. Retail or high volume clients may demand resources to a greater extent than high media spending clients.
3. What impact would the addition of your business have to the agency size?

While some advertisers are happy to source the best provider in the market, no matter where they are located, most require a local supplier. Considering so much of the business is built on relationships, long distance management needs to be considered.

strategic resources

If you are looking for business or marketing strategy it is better to select a specialist in this area than to expect the communications provider to supply this.

Look for: a clear distinction of the strategic functions they provide; demonstrable strategic performance, probably as case studies; clear demonstrations of consumer insights that led to strategic insights.

people resources
 
Many providers will have a New Business Team for the pitch, possibly never to be seen again. It is important to identify the resources that will be working on your business short and longer term.
While small agencies can be an advantage with access to the most senior people, as the agency grows or if something happens to key staff they may not have the flexibility to manage your business. Likewise, large multinationals may have higher turnover through career development.

Look for: a loyal, long term staffing base (low churn); dedicated resources or guarantees of time and effort by individual name or specific level of seniority/expertise; depth of resource as well as breadth.

experience/expertise
 
The conundrum is many advertisers want an agency with recent experience in their category without account conflicts with competitors. While it may be ideal to have a provider with experience in your category, it could be that this comes with a package of set thinking.
 
Look for: expertise in your category or industry (both historical and current) in a range of individuals; a cohesive team that provides both youthful creativity and mature experience.

management skills
 
Agencies are business units in their own right, and managing their own revenue and profit centres requires skill. The experience these management teams bring to the table are critical to your success.

Look for: key personnel who have experience across many industries and categories; managers who have 'skin in the game' (hands-on with clients); demonstrably good management skills (strong and consistent agency performance).

remuneration structure
 
Remuneration is most often based on a 'cost plus' formula that sees the provider remuneration comprised of a salary + overhead + profit calculation based on the advertiser's needs and expectations. In some cases, advertisers also enjoy a Performance Based Remuneration (PBR) aspect that rewards or penalises the agency on performance.

Look for: a flexible remuneration arrangement based on reasonable salary structures, overhead multiples and base profit margin; the willingness to participate in PBR arrangements; demonstration of putting their profit on the line (case studies); a workable review facility that recognises the ebb and flow of budgets and workloads.
 
chemistry
 
One of the most important parts of the relationship between provider and advertiser department is 'chemistry' or 'fit'. Most relationships that do go long-term are based on mutual respect, understanding and consideration.
 
Look for: a willingness to listen as well as talk; something more than the camaraderie of the new business pitch; a genuine interest in or passion for your business; an open and honest approach that will engender trust and respect.

P3 Process has a comprehensive database of the creative, direct marketing, design and pr agencies and consultancies in Australia, both big and small. For more information call Darren Woolley at P3Process on 03 9682 6800 or 02 9279 4997 or email darren@p3.com.au

3 effective ways to manage your tv production costs


"Knowledge is power" and now is the ideal time to find out how you can manage and control your TV production costs.

Don't wait until you are facing a high priced production estimate. Contact Clive Duncan at P3TV and find out how P3TV clients have saved tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Clive can even provide you with a presentation on the various ways P3TV can put you in control. Email Clive now on clive@p3.com.au or call 03 9682 6800 or 02 9279 4997

 

p3tv workshops coming in May

The popular P3TV Workshops are returning in May this year in association with the Nine Network.

Sydney - Wed May 10 - 9 am-1 pm
Melbourne - Tue May 16 - 9 am-1 pm
Sydney - Thursday May 18 - 9am-1pm

To secure your spot early email georgia@p3.com.au for a booking form today.

health check your dm activities

 

 With direct marketing expenditure outstripping media, it is clear that marketers are continuing to embrace DM to build business and brands.

But how effective and efficient is your DM activity?

The P3DMi Health Check provides you with a report card on how your DM activities compare with the industry best practice benchmarks.

To find out more contact Les Woolridge at les@p3.com.au or call 03 9682 6800 or 02 9279 4997.


P3 ? helping people achieve commercial purpose through creative process

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