A recent Digiday article titled, Why Agencies Will Double Down on Strategy, highlights how agencies are increasing their focus on strategy to help clients gain deeper insights into digital opportunities. According to a study conducted by agency-client relationship experts, RSW/US, 76% of agencies now provide strategic services, up from 59 percent in 2009; however, only 16 percent of marketer clients surveyed, say they make use of them. This indicates that there are still hurdles that need to be overcome.
A notable point in the article: “Ultimately, a focus on strategy could prove more lucrative for agencies, largely because it’s harder to define and to quantify. Instead of charging by the hour or percentage-based fees, and seeing their margins constantly squeezed by procurement departments as a result, the consultative approach could allow them to monetize their expertise more effectively as third parties or clients themselves handle the execution.”
Strategy is clearly a way for media agencies to differentiate and grow but first they have to achieve better operational efficiencies. Without this first step, it will be almost impossible to attract the right people and provide them with the time and resources to do their best work. Once these two steps occur, new ways to scale the agency business will present themselves. This progression works in other industries and there’s no reason why it can’t work in ours.
With the right operational strategy in place, the future is very bright for agencies…