Advertising and Media Agencies

The relationship between advertising and media agencies with their clients is truly one of the long standing examples of partnership and collaboration across business functions. While a relationship of trusted partnership with the advertising and media agencies is essential, it is also mutually important for the players to follow a diligent and regular review process across all aspects of the relationship. Apart from adherence to processes and policies, a re-assessment exercise which reviews and approves existing contracts, spends and execution pattern. Variable payments often are a very small portion of the overall remuneration.

Accountability for results is not built into partnership contracts. Payments are few and far in between and there is scope to improve transparency around financial transactions. This exercise should ideally leverage other internal departments like Finance and Procurement as well. If the relationship with the agencies is based on very high mutual trust then it is easy to make these assessments an integral part of the checks and balances regime. Key performance aspects like agency remuneration, performance linked spend analysis, assessment of media campaign effectiveness and competitive benchmarking should be a part of the scope. Market leaders find that regular assessments throw up insights and information that critically determine how their marketing budgets can be better utilized.

Given the widespread challenges advertisers face in terms of communications clutter and inability of people to go beyond the demographic variables, innovation in media strategy is essential to enable brands to reach their target segments effectively. Best practice leaders have demonstrated that breakthrough innovation is possible across channels be it the use of advertiser funded programming or innovation in outdoors through 3D boards. Hand on heart, not many marketing teams can stake claim to breakthrough ways of reaching their target audience and this points to capability and process issues. Another area that Indian advertisers as a whole have been slow to adapt is the use of non-traditional media. While in most developed countries TV and print contribute 50-75% of all media spends, the number is still as high as 85% in India. While some brands have adopted brand-led web portals and targeted SMS-based promotion routes, this area remains unexplored. There is an urgent need for brand teams to decipher and fully understand the multiple forms of web advertising, email ads, search engines ads and now mobile advertising as consumers have taken to these media at a rate much faster than advertisers. Again, the key pre-requisite for innovation is for brand teams to build capabilities which otherwise would have been considered outside their domain.

While there is immense pressure on CMO’s to control expenses, it is also a great opportunity for them to fundamentally alter the processes and capabilities which define how they are able to invest in their brands in the time to come. A detailed assessment of their marketing organization process and capability can not only lead to cost efficiencies in the region of about 5-15 % but also infuse more capabilities into the marketing setups.

With clients increasingly trying to cut costs, agencies must constantly try to find new revenue streams to increase inflow of money. Agencies should not expect the same revenue models to deliver forever.
Great people have a focus and don’t want to compromise. Do interesting things and interesting things will happen to you. On digital firms wanting to develop a creative culture in their organizations it was better to put creative and technology individuals together and ‘have fun’ rather than try to make creative professionals tech-savvy or getting techies to embrace creativity.

Advertising had created an abstract world to live in and to capture consumers, but technology threatened to change all that. The more technology connects us the more fragmented it gets.
An advertisement provides things to happen that threw open a lot of opportunities for communication. There is a need for refreshing communication and it was the discovery of what makes people do what they do.

Media Agencies have professionals in advertising. Therefore corporate groups tie up with media agencies. The professional media agencies include copy writers and artists who can draw the art work (4 or 5 proposals) for the client. The client is normally from big corporates. Media Agencies are known for the slogans or words along with art work and sometimes all the ad matter become a catch phrase or house hold word.