August 22, 2016

5 Ways to Establish a Healthy Partnership with Your New Ad Agency

Congratulations! You’ve completed an exhaustive RFP process and have a shiny new agency that you can’t wait to take for a spin. I’m sure you asked all the necessary questions, so there shouldn’t be any surprises now that it’s time to get down to solving all of your marketing communications challenges. The only question that matters is, “How do we get started?”

As the client, it is best to start by understanding the mindset of your newly hired agency. Winning your business is our reason for existence. It feels like we’ve won the gold medal in your event. We put forth our best effort, and you swiped right!

The next few months will be the honeymoon phase for both of us. In order to make that feeling last for years to come, let’s get off on the right foot by setting best practices from the get-go. HubSpot put together a solid list of steps for onboarding new clients from the agency’s perspective (a great read for those clients wondering what to expect from their new agency).

Since you’re a busy person, here’s the long and short of an effective client onboarding process:

  1. Assess the client’s campaign and assets.
  2. Build the marketing plan and campaign goals.
  3. Assign your best team for the job.
  4. Hold an internal client-orientation meeting.
  5. Plan for a great kickoff call.
  6. Do a 30-day checkup call.

Now that you are aware of your agency’s internal duties, you may be asking yourself, “What can I do to ensure I get the most out of my new agency?” Well I’m glad you asked! Regardless of whether you are a seasoned vet or a newbie to the whole partnering-with-an-agency-thing, there are a few key ways to develop a healthy relationship with your new ad agency:

  1. Communicate. Communication is often overlooked or downplayed in the agency-client relationship. Be clear and honest with your agency team since they will be living and breathing your brand. Share everything with your partner—the good, the bad and the ugly.
  2. Set clear expectations. Define your goals and let your agency team know what you want to accomplish with your campaign. Provide relevant information so the team can get a feel for your product, people and corporate culture to formulate a solid strategy.
  3. Divulge your budget. Share what you would like to spend so your agency can recommend solutions at price points within your range. There’s nothing worse than the tease of a great proposal you can’t afford.
  4. Trust. Place your trust in your agency. You have communicated your expectations and a talented, creative team has been assigned to your account. You hired your agency for their insight. They have your best interests in mind. So sit back and let them take the wheel.
  5. Be patient. Great advertising takes time. It’s our job to think of the best ways to get your communications seen. We have lots of ideas and ways to do this. So let us discover the amazing and push the limits!