In today's rapidly evolving marketing and communication landscape, the complexity is often mirrored by an increase in the number of agency partners that companies engage with to create and implement their strategies. The key question for managers is how to extract maximum value from these collaborations. The path to efficiency isn’t just about the number of agencies within the ecosystem but rather about their relevance and complementarity to the changing needs of the business. Are they contributing effectively, or merely competing for a larger slice of the budget?
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Several indicators suggest the need to reevaluate your agency ecosystem. These include duplicated roles, costs, and man-hours across different agencies; lack of brand coherence; fragmented budgets; diminished marketing impact; and teams constantly running between alignment meetings. When faced with these challenges, it’s crucial to consider practical steps to optimize the agency ecosystem.
Future-Focused Ambitions: Start by looking beyond the immediate needs. Redesigning or adjusting your ecosystem isn't an annual task. Always base your strategy on the scope and expertise required to achieve your ambitions in the coming years.
Internal Partners Matter: Remember to include internal departments and freelancers in your ecosystem analysis. Parts of your total scope might be managed in-house or by a temporary setup of freelancers. Their involvement is key to the ecosystem’s optimization.
The ‘Invisible’ Agencies: Your ecosystem likely includes more agencies than you realize. Smaller agencies, ones activated only occasionally, or those with less creative visibility are often overlooked. However, their lesser visibility does not diminish their importance in ecosystem optimization.
Measuring Team Input: The time and energy your team invests in managing the ecosystem are costly. Shifting focus from managing the ecosystem to more valuable internal tasks can significantly enhance motivation.
A System for the Ecosystem: The term 'ecosystem' implies the need for a systematic approach. Even the most optimal ecosystem can drain energy and resources without the support of the right operational model. As the advertiser, you are in the driver's seat when redesigning the governance model.
In conclusion, navigating the complexities of a marketing agency ecosystem requires a strategic approach that prioritizes relevance, efficiency, and the seamless integration of all partners, both internal and external. By following these five practical tips, managers can ensure their agency ecosystem is not only robust but also finely tuned to the evolving needs of their business.
PitchPoint guides marketeers in increasing the performance and impact of their ecosystem and optimising the time and energy spend by their teams. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on how best to proceed.