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ISBA and The Observatory International launch agency relationship management report

Findings suggest advertisers and agencies who work closely together get the most from their relationship

The Agency Relationship Management report sheds light on what agency management currently looks like in the UK, what issues are arising, and what might have to change going forward to facilitate and enable brand growth.

Positive findings included:

  • There is 100% consensus that regular relationship discussions with agencies can avoid problems and that issues with agencies need to be attended to an early stage.
  • All participants in the survey undertook regular agency evaluations underpinning the view that regular discussion can avoid problems.
  • 80% of respondents believe long-term relationships are a valuable contributor to producing great work
  • Agency relationship management is worth dedicating resource to – 58% of respondents had a dedicated agency relationship management resource, sitting in either marketing, procurement, or both.

However, there is room for improvement:

  • Only half of the UK respondents have close enough relationships to view their agency partners as ‘trusted advisors’.
  • Only 21% of the survey respondents had training in place to help their teams get the best from their agencies yet great briefing is an essential component to produce great work.
  • Only half of the respondents had documented roles and responsibilities for each of their key agencies – without these the scope for misalignment of expectation and the potential for escalation of issues is significantly enhanced.

The report also looks at what has changed in the last six months against the backdrop of the global Coronavirus pandemic and offers recommendations for effective agency relationship management.

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