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Only 1 in 4 ad agency professionals are satisfied with the pitch process, per results from a Provoke Insights survey [download page]. Client-side marketers surveyed as part of the report feel that creativity and a true understanding of the company’s goals and objectives are necessary for agencies to stand out.

On an encouraging note, clients are most satisfied with that particular point: their primary agencies’ understanding of their goals and objectives.

The report notes that smaller companies are less likely to be satisfied with their partners’ access to research/data, which is also seen as a key element in winning a pitch.

Agencies themselves believe in the value of research during the pitch process, per the report. In fact, surveys (33%) emerge as the top-cited resource that would improve the pitch process, followed by competitive intelligence (30%) and trends analyses (29%).

Why Switch Agencies?

It’s an increasingly competitive environment for agencies, which are dealing with the rise of non-traditional alternatives (such as digital consultancies) and a trend towards in-sourcing.

As a result, it’s important for agencies to understand what leads to brands putting them up for review. (A recent report estimated $10 billion of media business being under review at the start of the year.)

According to clients surveyed by Provoke Insights, cost (37%) is the top reason why agencies are put up for review, with this especially the case for smaller companies. Other reasons for switching agencies include the overall relationship (24%) and access to research and data (23%), which is a bigger consideration for larger companies (27%).

Brands Struggle to Find In-House Talent

Although in-sourcing is gaining steam, brands need to secure the right talent. And many, at least in Europe, are finding that difficult, according to a report from ID Comms [download page]. In fact, advertisers rated access to the best quality talent as the biggest challenge in expanding in-house buying.

Other challenges cited in the report for marketers planning to expand their in-house media buying capabilities included measuring success and deciding on technology.

About the Data: The Provoke Insights report was based on a survey 736 respondents consisting of advertising professionals (149) and in-house marketing leaders (587). Respondents worked at companies with a minimum of 25 employees and had full or shared decision- making authority of ad budget, marketing vendor selection, or marketing initiatives. Smaller companies were defined as having fewer than 500 employees and larger companies as having 500+ employees.

ID Comms reports that its “findings are based on responses from 130 respondents. The respondents were comprised of Marketing, Media and Procurement professionals with a range of global, regional and local market responsibilities, representing companies spending more than $30bn globally on advertising each year. 75% of the respondents were Europe-based, 15% were from the US and the remainder represented the rest of the world.”

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