What does this mean for your agency?

“Three-quarters of major brands reviewing their agency roster”

The article in Marketing Week then goes on to say ‘clients are reviewing their current arrangements to ensure they have the right mix of agencies and capabilities’.

Just because you have a client today does not mean you will have that client tomorrow. There are no guarantees in the client-agency relationship. Do not assume that because your NPS* scores are respectable that you can relax. Agency relationships are always in a state of flux. Procurement call it ‘Supplier Delusion’ when we believe we are more important to our clients than the client themselves believe. Our value to our clients is like beauty, it’s in the eye of the beholder. It’s what the client thinks is valuable, not what you or I think.

Sometimes on my agency workshops we discuss how to establish how the client really sees the agency.  Here are a couple of pointers to consider.

  • Meet face to face with the senior client decision maker. (Not necessarily the day to day contact) Ask some planned ballsy
    How much do you love working with us?
    How are your agency-needs changing?
    How well are we performing against your success criteria?
  • Really actively listen. Not just to what they are saying but also what they aren’t saying.
    What areas of business are they avoiding talking about?
    Watch their body language for clues as to how they are thinking.
  • As a rule of thumb agencies typically lose 10-15% of their client base each year.
    Plan for the worst case scenario – what if 15% of your client base left in the next 12 months, how well would your agency cope?
  • Hard-wire into your processes the opportunity to get regular honest feedback from your senior client decision maker. *Net Promoter Score
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