used to look
All those phone calls, compliments, gifts....
That was then. But are you still feeling the love?
Finding an agency you can call a partner is more than the courtship or the first few dates. They might have promised you the earth, but are they still making it move?
A real relationship is open, honest, straight-talking – and retains its spark.
So how’s yours?
IS IT LIKE THEY'RE ONLY EVER AFTER ONE THING?
But are you feeling, er, satisfied?
This only works when you share thoughts and try new things. So one day it might be a website; the next, an outdoor campaign might suit you better. If the time’s right for direct mail or social media, they should let you know.
Your agency should be comfortable with all media channels, not just enamoured with one.
Each piece of work, online or offline, should show your brand as you’d want to be seen.
Have they made an effort
to know the real you?
If not, why not? They should know you inside out by now. They should have asked about and seen things you wouldn’t normally let on.
Being persistently, but pleasantly inquisitive is what partners do. Because if they haven’t found the real you, how real do they sound when they introduce you to others?
It’s your agency’s business to understand yours – your brand, product, service, market, the lot.
By taking the time to get to know you, they can convince your customer to do the same.
Do they ever surprise you? Make you feel different?
You know, with a new idea, another way, a spark, a frisson. OK, you may not go for everything they suggest. But at least they’re taking the trouble to think about you. Aren’t they?
You should regularly be experiencing the excitement of having someone run over to yours with something to show you. And when it’s great, you can be proud to show the world what you’ve produced together.
Any agency knows predictable means anonymous, and that anonymity is marketing’s biggest sin.
Every agency should know that by connecting emotionally, you can grab your customer’s attention and hold it tight. Does yours?
ARE YOU HAPPY WITH WHERE ITS ALL LEADING?
Those early signs looked good, but where are you heading now? If you’re struggling to see a direction, a purpose and a value in staying together, what’s the point?
A proper relationship develops both the boundaries of trust and the freedoms of expression. That’s how you build towards something meaningful, valuable and satisfying for you both.
So it is with a great customer journey and the right user experience.
Is that what your customer is getting from your marketing?
Are you getting less out of this than you put in?
One-sided relationships only ever have one outcome.
If you’re making the commitments and the investments, and seeing rather less of the rewards, something’s not right.
It’s up to both parties to share the other’s goals. That’s what makes partners strong. You know that. But do they?
Return-on-investment isn’t a buzzword; it’s why you do marketing.
Are you still close?
Or merely passing acquaintances? What’s happened to the collaboration? Where’s the drive, the energy?
‘Where are we heading?’ ‘What are we doing?’ ‘Are we doing it right?’ These are both simple questions and hard questions. The sort partners ask and answer.
When you’re building something, it gets built quicker and stronger with someone next to you that gives a damn.
A good agency stays interested, invigorated and in touch.
It searches for ways to build your brand, not just its bottom line.
JUST GOING THROUGH
It’s easy to agree, say yes, and leave it at that. Problem is, that gets you nowhere.
When’s the last time they challenged you? Not because they’re contrary, but because they care. Any relationship needs the odd open, frank exchange. It’s healthy.
A partner that makes you think is thinking well. And that can lead to something great.
Challenging the way you think is what an agency does.
If yours isn’t pushing you in ways you’d never thought of, why?
DON'T THEY KNOW LITTLE THINGS MATTER?
Forget the grand gestures. They just need cash. The small things that keep a relationship alive need care.
Being there when you need them, in person or on the phone. Keeping a time, a date, a promise. The odd thing you didn’t expect, but appreciate.
The world is made up of small things we hardly notice, except when they’re not there
Deadlines, quality control, timing plans and budgets are housekeeping factors, not value added services.
You have a right to expect them; your agency a duty to deliver.