Adam Ferrier

Adam Ferrier

Friday, 12 November 2010 15:36

Should I put my faith in my advertising agency?

I’m about to launch my first major advertising campaign and have got an agency on board to help me. They have suggested a strategy that is aimed at a younger demographic than I imagined and uses creative work and channels I’m not very familiar with. My background isn’t in marketing and the agency seems to know what it’s talking about, but how can I be certain that I should put my faith in the campaign?


Any issues with trust between yourself and the advertising agency should have been worked out before you see their first campaign ideas. You’ve employed them to do a job.


If you are a significant client to them then don’t worry - your budget will over-ride any desire for them to get famous off the back of your brand.


However, if you really are still unsure I would recommend a) asking the agency to present to wider group of people in the office and garner their inputs and b) doing some quick qualitative research to ensure your target audience likes the campaign.


Loads of agency people are groaning right now as I say this qualitative research can also be extremely unreliable (do you have a qualitative researcher you can trust, and do you trust them more than the agency?)


Many agencies do have a built in bias towards privileged, private school white blokes’ humour (aged 20-30), as that is the normal type of person developing ideas in an agency.


So in the end you’re the client and you call the shots. If the agency seems to know what they are talking about, and you employed them – then back your own judgement, either way. Trust is key. If you don’t let them do their job it’ll be a screw up. If they don’t have your best interests at heart – again it will be a screw up.

Adam Ferrier is a consumer psychologist and founding partner of Naked Communications Australia.  He began his career as a forensic psychologist. Adam then had a stint at Saatchi & Saatchi before starting Naked Communications in 2004. He was also State under-12 Chess Champion in WA. 


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