How to Position Your Agency for Success

Every day across the globe, agencies are working hard to differentiate their clients and help drive their clients’ growth. These agencies use the art and science of positioning to help their clients stand out from competition in an important and authentic manner. Sadly, most of the agencies doing this fine work have not worked the same positioning magic for themselves, in spite of the fact that they compete with dozens—if not hundreds—of other agencies on a daily basis. There is an abundance of talented and effective agencies who have failed to differentiate themselves. As a result, they are missing out on the significant (and very profitable) growth opportunities triggered by a compelling brand position. So, how to position your agency for success? Let’s talk about it. The Challenges of Agency Growth As you no doubt know, there are numerous challenges when it comes to growing an agency today. These challenges include: • More competition • Greater complexity • Difficulty expressing the uniqueness of your agency • A more educated and informed buyer who does his/her agency research without your knowledge Most agencies face these challenges. There is, however, an opportunity to address these challenges by positioning your agency in a truly unique, compelling and differentiated fashion. In this paper we will share the learning we have regarding how to create such a differentiated position for any agency by leveraging best practices that we have learned from our 28 years of agency related consulting. The Great Agencies of Old Most agencies today face the challenge of how to effectively position their firm and how to present their agency in a compelling, client-centric manner. It was not always like this! The great agencies of old stood for [...]

How to Differentiate Your Agency From All the Rest

Despite their best efforts to stand out, nearly every agency looks, sounds, and acts just like every other one. We all think we have figured out how to differentiate ourselves using catchy taglines and clever techniques, but from the outside looking in, it’s hard to tell the difference from one to the next. Don’t believe me? See whether any of these phrases ring a bell: “We are a full-service integrated marketing agency.” “We partner with our clients.” “We’ve been in business for X years and have more than X years of experience.” Sound familiar? These phrases might sound like good differentiators, but in reality, they just muddy the waters and make it more difficult to discern what makes one agency better than another. Don’t Please Everyone All the Time Looking across the landscape of agencies we work with, the ones that struggle to stay afloat are the generalists. I know how scary it can be to neglect part of what looks like an appealing market, but agencies today must find and attack specific niches to survive. New avenues of competition are part of the reason for this. Agencies are now commodities competing with freelancers and others who take advantage of low barriers to entry. Differentiating your agency from the masses requires clearly defined areas of expertise. Clients want specialists, not indistinguishable, cookie-cutter generalists. According to our research, one of the biggest factors for clients choosing an agency is industry-specific expertise, which they define as having 25-50% of the agency’s business in one industry. Differentiate Your Agency (For Real) Although most agencies struggle to stand out, differentiating isn’t as hard as it seems. These four strategies help the most successful agencies split from the pack and [...]

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