A good partnership between brand and communication agency leads to excellent work. And excellent work leads to excellent business results. We are all convinced of this. To make and keep a relationship strong, regular formal feedback is a necessity.
In a study by WFA, 93% of brands confirm that agency evaluations are very important. At the same time, 85% of the participants have to confess that they only do it superficially or don't do it for a variety of reasons. In addition, there is a lack of consistent professional tools to guide this process.
There is also dissatisfaction on the agency side with agency evaluations. The same WFA survey shows that only 19% of agencies are satisfied with the current evaluation process. They indicate that feedback is often based on subjective opinions and emotions. And when there is an evaluation, only 10% can give qualitative feedback to their client. However... 'it takes two to tango'.
Of course it is good to give each other feedback every day. So that there are no surprises. But in addition, a more formal, broader and structured evaluation is a necessity. At least once a year.
The current COVID period has made this problem even more acute. The lack of physical meetings and a permanent shift in priorities have strained relationships. There is also less space and time for feedback. While brands and agencies are now even more in need of mutual trust and true collaboration. Collaboration tools to optimize the way both sides work and better evaluation processes can help.
A professional evaluation tool stimulates the right conversations. Away from stereotypical feedback and subjective opinions. But based on real facts and figures. In this way the performance of the collaboration can be improved. It becomes a detection tool for the development of extra skills in both teams, for a better allocation of resources, for process improvement and behavioral change. And finally: a correct evaluation motivates the teams.
A good evaluation process has the following characteristics:
it is transparent to all participants
it is bi-directional: both parties evaluate each other
it is broad and measures all aspects of the relationship with all stakeholders
It is done on a regular basis, so evolutions can be measured
it is done consistently, always in the same way, so that we can benchmark
It is a simple and easy process
it is neutral, free of subjectivity
it is action oriented and leads to a concrete action plan to bring about changes
PitchPoint recently developed COLLAB, a tool for perpetuating sustainable brand-agency relationships. COLLAB measures 3 dimensions:
expertise: competencies and skills needed for an effective relationship
process: the operational collaboration that determines the effectiveness of the relationship
attitude: behaviors that influence the 'chemistry' of the relationship
Based on a normalized questionnaire, a summary report is generated. On the one hand, this provides a detailed and objective insight into the current brand-agency relationship. On the other hand, it forms the basis for a concrete action plan.
Interested in the COLLAB tool? Contact Chris Van Roey (firstname.lastname@example.org) for a demo.