At RSW/AgencySearch, we strive to be the gold standard of agency search consultants.

What constitutes a gold medal agency search? Ok, so maybe we’re a few weeks late on the Olympics theme, but the time is always right to give away some medals.

Not all searches are created equal, and we’ve spoken with a lot of brands in our 10+ years of business that simply didn’t know where they went wrong in trying to select their next marketing partner. And while a search might technically be successful, in that you find a new agency, only a well-conducted, organized process will earn you a fruitful relationship with a long-term partner.

So while all of these searches might end with a shiny new agency, you can guess which would lead to a “one-and-done” project, and which have years of mutually beneficial collaboration to look forward to.

Bronze Medal Search 

A bronze search is one that shows signs of disorganization from the start. Many of these searches don’t have access to a network of agencies, so they begin simply with shops that have been referred in the past, or just those around town. Maybe you buy into the buzzwords on a slick agency website, or neglect to cross-reference the projects they’ve helped clients complete in the past.

Whatever the issue, the result is a mostly fine agency that might help you get a project over the finish line, but isn’t tailored to your company’s needs, and in all likelihood, isn’t the best fit for you.

Silver Medal Search

While it doesn’t earn top marks, a silver medal search knows that a “one-size-fits-all” agency isn’t going to cut it – it digs beneath the surface to find what makes an agency unique, and equipped to solve your issues.

It may ignore some (seemingly) small red flags along the way: a missed email here, a cut-and-paste RFP response there, but for the most part, the brand feels good about their selection. And while these issues will likely bubble back up over the course of the partnership, again, not a disaster, and an agency that will give you a stretch of good work before those issues rise back up.

Gold Medal Search

A gold medal search asks the hard questions from beginning to end. It plugs into a network of agencies beyond just your smaller circle, tapping into a database of thousands of agencies, of all sizes. The challenge document forces agency candidates to dig deeper, giving your brand a better first look at which might be a fit for your given industry, project type, and crucially, your  specific objectives. It takes those goals into account, and measures an agency’s capabilities against it using those challenge responses, as well as previous work, testimonials, and eventually, the content of their pitch presentation.

The gold medal search also brings the experience and bandwidth to consult on smaller pieces of the process; keeping an open line of communication with candidates, ensuring that each is able to bring proactive ideas to the table (no order-takers), and that the winning shop complements your existing roster and capabilities.

In short, a  gold medal agency search goes the extra mile and digs deeper to find the perfect match for you, and that’s exactly what we’ve done for each of the 40+ searches we’ve conducted.

We bring a level of detail to all of our searches that brands simply can’t (or won’t) do on their own, through no fault of their own. And the best part – these gold medal searches don’t come at a gold cost; in fact, they don’t come at any cost at all to you, the marketer. So don’t settle for getting on the podium with a “fine” agency that simply takes orders. Go for gold, and let us help you find the partner that will bring new ideas to life for your brand.

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