I’m sure you all have been reading about the move to take agency work and move it in-house.

We’ve seen it first hand with the agencies we represent on the agency new business side of our business.

On the surface, it appears to be a logical thing to do. Save money, control the team, keep them focused, get things done quicker.

All that is good and I’m sure to some extent true, but the realities of what’s happening in today’s marketplace on both the agency and the marketer side, suggest that the value of a move in-house isn’t sustainable long-term.

The marketer’s world is changing. They are working with thinning ranks. The demands placed on them are greater today than ever before.

The requirements to justify spending and prove out the value of everything they do in advertising and marketing makes for a tricky, hard to manage situation.

And with more and more marketers encroaching on each other’s market space, and the pressures of e-retailers like Amazon increase, the need for more than just great creative is more pronounced today than it ever has been before.

And as we all know, the agency and advertising world is changing too.

I started RSW 13 years ago and the velocity of change just keeps increasing year after year. Having an agency that is smart enough to keep up with that change is critical to any businesses success.

And having an agency that can bring outside perspective and best-in-class expertise in areas of marketing analytics is vital to the health and success of any brand.

And let’s not forget about strategy and the importance of having an agency that can look at your business problem objectively and bring smart, strategic thinking to the table that will help bring a business challenge into a smartly organized and executed marketing plan.

Oh, and let’s also not forget about talent acquisition and retention.

Finding great talent is no easy task for even the best of agencies. We meet with new agency clients all the time and no matter where the agency is…New York, San Diego, Illinois, or Florida…the trials of finding great talent is tough when the unemployment rate is so low.

And agency people like to be in agency like worlds. I just left a firm in Boulder that fed its employees 4 of 5 days each week. They lived in a big, very cool, open space with many amenities only an agency can offer.

I think the in-house thing is fine for legal counsel – because the world of a lawyer is relatively black and white.

But in the world of the agency, it’s much more grey and far less linear and it requires people with perspective from the outside that can help you see the world a little differently and bring your business to life in a better and more productive way.

About 

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.