Is your agency “best-in-class”?

To be a best-in-class agency, you have to deliver on a lot of different levels, but I believe it all starts with your agency’s perspective relative to your business and their assignment.

If your agency is only looking at the relationship as a vendor relationship or only treating it as a creative relationship, then in my opinion, they aren’t best-in-class.


In today’s agency world, there are so many marketing services choices.

And in your marketing world, there is so little time and fewer and fewer resources.

Having an agency that is a (business) partner and not just a “player” is vital for a successful agency-client relationship.  Having a “do-er” agency (one that just responds to your commands) and not an agency that is a thinker and a partner in helping you guide strategy or works alongside you as you guide strategy, isn’t a winning approach.

Anybody can buy a creative shop.  You can find creativity just about anywhere these days.

What sets great agencies apart from not-so-great agencies, is their ability to think, their ability to ground their thinking in solid consumer or business insights, and their ability to develop a marketing program for your business that resonates with your consumer because of their smart planning and sound execution.

So best-in-class does mean talented and experienced and hard working.  But the truly best-in-class are those that bring a little extra to the table to help move your business ahead.

So what does this mean for you, the marketer?

When you’re looking for a new agency, ask the tough questions upfront.  Give them some business challenges and see to what extent they’ve dealt with them in the past – and find out what they did to address them.  Ask them how they have worked with clients like you.  Where and how have they contributed in ways beyond just delivering the goods?