Evolving Client Agency Models


I posted last week about a fascinating research project that I’d done with AAR on the shifting corporate innovation landscape and the resulting report which is free to download. Over the past months I’ve also been conducting a second piece of research for AAR on the evolving picture for client/agency relationships and models, and that report has just been published – again, free to download

Like the innovation partner landscape, the shape of agency rosters and types of engagement models is a rapidly changing space and pulls in all kinds of interesting dynamics and pressures such as increasing complexity, the impact of marketing technology, short-termism, zero-based budgeting, leading to some key shifts including the rise of in-housing of services, and changing approaches to rosters, engagement and remuneration.

As part of the report I defined the key things that clients really want from their agencies and how that is implicating on what they choose to do in-house, what they choose to in-source, and what they outsource. There are many different approaches to getting this right but I’ve looked at the key dynamics involved (such as the critical balance between specialism and generalism) and the advantages and disadvantages of specific models in order to arm client-side marketers with the right questions to make good decisions as to what is right for them. 

The reality is that there are big structural shifts underway in the industry that are likely to change client/agency models for ever. The report is designed to help navigate through that complexity. As always, interested to know what you think.


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