Get the Most Out of Your Ad Agency

It’s no secret that the most successful client-agency relationships start with a partnership mentality. The client knows his business, the agency knows marketing. When there’s a marriage of the two, the magic happens–great creative, consistent and recognizable branding, and ultimately a profitable, successful client. Most clients hold their agencies to high standards, and rightfully so. But like any good relationship, it takes two. Here are a few tips on how to leverage your partnership with an ad agency—and really get the best bang for your marketing buck.

Every good relationship starts with trust. To elevate your creative, your agency has to learn as much about your business as possible and act as an extension of your company. A good client not only shares information, he trusts his agency’s expertise. At our agency, we do what we do every single day, with creativity and intelligence in our respective crafts and disciplines—including planning and strategy, media buying and production, copywriting, design, and more. We do it all for many clients in a variety of industries, which is important. We know how to think like and appeal to a target market with an “outside-looking-in” viewpoint that’s sometimes hard to do on the inside.

You can’t just “hand off” your marketing. There’s a natural learning curve that can almost disappear as time goes by, but the very nature of marketing is collaborative. A client’s input is not only appreciated, it’s necessary—especially due to the inherent subjectivity of marketing. Just as an agency serves you, both parties must be responsive. Getting that last-minute ad produced on deadline is much easier when questions are answered, information and materials are provided, and approvals are given in a timely manner.

Back your agency’s work. If you’ve got both points above in your corner, this should be easy for you—because our work is also yours. Once it’s go-time and you need to get approvals from higher-ups or share with your organization, there will likely be objections (this goes back to subjectivity). Because you’ve been working with your agency every step of the way, now’s the time to weed out feedback that doesn’t fit and provide direction that makes sense and enhances the marketing effort.

Finally, remember why you chose your agency in the first place. Chances are you took a recommendation or were impressed with the agency’s work, then met with the team and appreciated that they listened—and ultimately, the partnership felt like a good fit. At the end of the day, a good agency is filled with wildly creative and smart pros who genuinely want “the work” to work for you.