Tell Your Agency What You Need (Not What You Want)

My latest Agency Post column takes a look from the other side of the table.

I usually write something from my point of view that I hope will help agencies vying for casino business. Today, I want to address my comments to clients hoping to get good work out of their agencies.

Take the time to teach your agency partner the ins and outs of your business. Don’t assume they know your business the way you know it. Share research. Share trends. Share the business. Share it with everyone at the agency, not just the account services team. It’s important that everyone that touches your account understands your business.

When you ask for creative, always remember that you’re asking for a creative solution to a business problem, not for something that just looks good. There is a delicate balance between art directing, bashing and giving constructive feedback. When you need to make changes, tell them what works and what doesn’t work. It doesn’t do any good to say things like “boring” or “we don’t like this”. That just tells them what they’ve given you isn’t working for you, but why?

I know this is hard to do. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve asked for more options without telling an account services person why I need to see something else. Guilty! I do know that when we’ve taken time to talk about the business goals, we’ve gotten stellar creative – not because it’s pretty, but because it accomplishes the business and communications goals.

Here are some things you should ask yourself (and communicate to your agency).

– What is the current condition and what is it that you are trying to achieve?

– Are there any facts consumers MUST know in order to accomplish these goals? Dates, times, cost of entry, etc.

– Is there something in particular you personally like about the program? Something you think is just incredible? Chances are it’s probably not as important to your customer. Toss that out.

– If this particular job is just a piece in a bigger puzzle, tell your agency about all of the other pieces and how they’ll work together.

Keep your brand as a solid foundation and follow these tips. You’ll find yourself getting better creative with fewer revisions. What do you need or do in order to produce great creative?

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Tell Your Agency What You Need (Not What You Want)

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