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Can You Make a Client-Agency Partnership Work?


Trust the agency. They know best.

True or false – that is highly debatable.

After all, how much understanding an agency shows for the brand may also depend on the brand itself.

When an agency comes on board, you’re pretty much agreeing on a partnership. And just like any other partnerships out there, it takes honest and open communication to make it work, with plenty of trials and errors in between.

If you find your brand struggling to make the most out of the partnership, here are some ways you can go about working with your agency.

#1: Write a clear brief.
Always start of with a clear objective. Before sending out a brief, try to hit the ground running and understand the perimeters you’re playing with (your product USP, your budget, your target audience) and what you’d like to achieve. A clearer brief always results in a clearer game plan, and more relevant creative work.

#2: Don’t hold back.
Agencies thrive on information. The more you give them, the more they’ll connect with your brand. Be explicit. Assist your agency. That way, they’ll be able to help you devise more than just another run-of-the-mill campaign, but equip it with an insightful strategy that can ultimately empower your brand and set the direction it should take.

#3: Stick to the plan.
More often than not, someone’s bound to be left out of the loop. Try your best to make sure that everyone involved is up-to-date about the project. The last thing you’d want is to go on a short leave, only to discover that a junior executive has changed the direction of the campaign to his/her individual taste – wasting what could be possibly months’ worth of hard work from both you and the agency.

#4: Plan for more time.
Be patient. If a comfortable home is where a happy family thrives, a comfortable timeline is where good campaigns grow. Time gives space for ideas, and helps both parties explore different possibilities without making rash decisions that may be costly in the future.

#5: Be receptive.
If results haven’t been coming in, you may be playing it too safe for too long. Sit down with the agency, revisit the brief and try to see what else can be done to get your brand out there. Listen, discuss and be open to new ideas – game changers don’t concede to the norm.

So, are both you and the agency ready for a great partnership – and deliver what’s best for the brand?

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