Marketing and advertising is an ever-changing industry. The future cannot be predicted but one thing is certain; the customer journey is changing. Brands are competing for attention and consumers are spoilt for choice. People are bombarded with thousands of messages, adverts and social media posts every day, so advertising agencies need to work hard to grab the viewers’ attention.
Agencies need to change, transform and adapt their strategies to keep up with shifting consumer needs. Agencies need to focus on solving big problems for their clients rather than on winning awards. In this highly digitised age where the audience is global but attention spans are minimal, agencies need to be smart if they are to survive.
The enduring agency of the future is not the agency of today. Business models need to change, priorities need to be realigned and advertising messages need to have more of an impact on the audience. These are the qualities of an enduring agency…
Become a business partner
The ad agency of tomorrow needs to be an irreplaceable long-term business partner. They need to be invested in the brands they represent; dedicated to the success of their client’s businesses. Agencies need to position themselves as the in-house marketing team for their clients’ companies.
The success of a client’s brand directly determines the success of the agency. Marketers need to ask hard questions about the client brief – challenge it, adapt it and make it their own. They are the experts and know what marketing methods work best. This will help to deliver maximum results for the client.
Become accountable for results
Agencies of the future need to take pride in their work and be accountable for the results of their campaigns. Agencies may have the right strategies, creativity and communication plans, but these are no good without accountability and set goals.
Marketers need to set key performance indicators (KPIs) that will allow them to track the performance of their campaigns and adjust them where necessary. By being accountable for their results, agencies can deliver more bang for their buck and retain the business.
Become agile and adaptable
Agencies that can adapt to change will stand the test of time. This industry is all about survival of the fittest and, as nature has proven, the most agile and intelligent will survive. Agencies need to play to their strengths; develop them and nurture them, but also adapt with the times and learn how to grow.
Marketers need to constantly evaluate their position and roles – be open to change and shifting technologies. Previously successful marketing tactics do not necessarily work anymore. Billboards and scripted television commercials no longer drive the most sales. This is proof that the industry has changed and agencies need to fit in or fall away.
The aim for agencies should be to improve themselves and deliver quality services to clients. Instead of trying to beat the competition, agencies need to remain introspective and constantly ask how they can better themselves for the good of the brands they represent. The best way to retain business is to offer exceptional client service, meaningful advertising campaigns and traceable results.