TRANSFORMATION: CHALLENGING THE STATUS QUO
By Leon Marinus
With the current focus around transformation within the advertising and communications sectors, it is apparent that we need a complete paradigm shift around the transformational process.
True: the “old” agency model is incredibly outdated with structures that remain overly resource-heavy and lack the flexibility to conform to the required immediacy. A two-week turnaround is no longer acceptable more so in the age of tech and social media. From an HR perspective too, there are still too many layers to the creative process.
True: there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to the Agency of the Future, instead we require a more “artisanal” model to quote the modern vernacular.
However. And here’s a thing: what about a back-to-basics kind of thinking.
Basic #1: Don’t take clients for granted.
Our clients remain at the very heart of what we do and without them we are nothing. It is our responsibility to deliver value-driven results that impact resoundingly on their bottom line and their brand image. As custodians of their brands, we are implicitly entrusted with delivering the goods and need to remain cognisant of that fundamental more. Deliver the best work you know how and when you feel you’ve reached the pinnacle take it that one step further. Continually deliver on excellence.
Basic #2: Be Honest
Be open and transparent in all your dealings. It is no secret that clients are more marketing- and tech savvy than ever before. However, in many instances clients look to US, as industry experts, to guide their thinking. Don’t baffle with BS. Don’t fudge the research / conversion rates / click through numbers. Don’t propose a campaign you’re not 110% sure about. DO give your client the full picture even if it means having uncomfortable discussions. But in all things be impeccable with your word – from a return email within two hours, to a cost estimate that is wholly transparent.
Basic #3: Formulate and Foster Relationships
This one seems like a no-brainer. We all give lip-service to “building long-term partnerships” or that awful “mutually beneficial relationships” thing. But how often do we actively build on client / Agency relationships? It is all too easy to enter into a combative “them versus us” mindset that frankly benefits no-one. Doesn’t it make more sense to work toward a common goal? Client – Agency relationships should ideally, be based on a bond of trust, more than adherence to contracts and SLA’s.
We need to develop and actively foster a win-win scenario and work upon a methodology that suits everyone.
This seems like a good place to start.
About the author: Leon Marinus is a self-made entrepreneur. As revered speaker, not to mention Roodepoort Chamber of Commerce & Industry Vice-President and winner of the 2017 Certificate of Excellence & Thanks Business of the Year 2018 award Leon Marinus has his finger on the pulse.