Marketers are turning inward, making specialists more important than ever

  • marketers looking inward

According to a recent article Advertising Week 360, titled “Marketers are turning inward, making specialists more important than ever“, more and more marketers are moving parts of their media and marketing activities in-house to improve speed-to-market and transparency.

What this has created is a need for specialist and independent agencies to satisfy other needs that marketers simply can’t manage effectively in-house.

The challenge this presents for marketers.

According to the article, “Implementing a robust specialist strategy has its own set of hurdles, and the biggest is figuring out how to connect brands and specialists.”

The article goes on to say, “Independent agencies and specialist agencies generally lack a penetrating voice and don’t often find themselves invited to full-service pitches. Specialists are routinely bypassed by pitch consultants who default to full-service, typically holding company, bundled solutions rather than draw upon the best resources to create a service offering built around a client’s specific needs.”

It’s easier for big pitch consultants to default to bigger, networked agencies.

ego stroking

These two groups are in a constant elbow-rubbing, ego-stroking state.  At a recent agency conference I attended in New York, it was almost sad to see these older search consultants buddy up to bigger shops.  They pretend to care about the smaller independents and the smaller specialist agencies, but this isn’t where they make their money.  They are clearly in a difficult position.

The world is changing and marketers aren’t sitting idly by.

Just read an article today (“Conagra, shifting its marketing approach, drops DDB“) that talks about this very fact:  “Conagra wants to shake up how it connects with shoppers, aiming to do more work in areas such as in-store marketing, digital video and social media, and spending less in areas such as TV.”
Marketers are making the move, but the problem is it’s not always easy for marketers to find the best-in-class agencies they need to satisfy these very specific needs.

Apologies in advance…for the shameful self-promotion.

This is where we fit in. Marketers can either try to do it on their own, but they either don’t have the time or the purview to see the full range of agencies out there to meet their needs.

We started this business of being a higher value way to find agencies that mostly operate in a specialist state – whether it’s specialist in terms of category expertise or specialist from a technical/marketing standpoint – this is the primary space we operate in.

We were recently brought in to help a regional restaurant brand find an independent agency with very specific experience in that space.  We just completed a search for Ingram Micro to help them find an agency with very specific technical experience to help them with new initiatives.  We have helped hospital brands, retail brands, B2B manufacturers…all looking for agencies with very specific levels of expertise.

So as you see the need to manage more of your business in-house increase, and you feel the need to really fine-tune your marketing skills in very specific areas of your business, give us a call.  We’d be happy to help out (513-559-3101/

Mark is a 30-year veteran of the consumer packaged goods, advertising, and marketing service industry. Mark started his career at DDB Needham in Chicago prior to earning his MBA from the J.L. Kellogg Business School at Northwestern where he majored in Marketing and Economics. Prior to starting RSW/US in 2005, Mark was General Manager for AcuPOLL, a global research consultancy. Sneider worked in Marketing for S.C. Johnson and KAO Brands. Sneider has been invited to speak at numerous Agency events and network conferences domestically and internationally including the 4A’s, Magnet, NAMA, TAAN, and MCAN. Sneider has been featured in prominent industry publications including Adweek, Media Post, e-Marketer, and Forbes. When not working (which often seems like not often), Mark likes to run miles, go to church, and just chill with a hard copy issue of Fast Company.

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