I have been running/managing RSW/AgencySearch now for 6 years, helping marketers with agency searches.
Of the 30 searches we’ve run, almost half have occurred post a marketing client having tried to manage their search on their own.
They either started and simply could finish because it became far too overwhelming.
Or they couldn’t manage all the constituents involved in the process (bosses, boards, etc.)
Or they ended up with an agency that – in the end – wasn’t a great fit for their firm.
So the question on one’s mind might be: Why is the process so tough and so difficult for a marketer to manage on their own?
Based on my own personal experience managing searches, I think there are 3 central reasons why “self searches” simply aren’t the best way to go.
- Marketers have too many responsibilities to put the time needed into managing a search. Searching for a new agency requires a close look at each and every agency under consideration. Cursory looks aren’t going to get you what you need.
- Marketers don’t know what kind of questions to ask (in general). Being able to “look under the hood” and knowing when an agency is “blowing smoke” versus giving you the straight scoop requires time and experience working with agencies.
- Marketers don’t have the full purview of all the possibilities. While I’m sure many of you get many calls from many agencies in a given week – and probably have a handful of agencies you’ve worked with in the past – there are a boatload out there that are likely a lot better than the set you have in-hand
So if you’re thinking about managing a marketing agency search on your own, give it a second thought.
You aren’t in the business of being a search firm…you’re in the business of driving your business. And while I fully realize agencies are central to that success…getting objective perspective from a group with the experience, purview, and time to construct and manage an effective search…is critical.
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