Agency Partners Help Drive Strong Business Performance

Agency Partners Help Drive Strong Business Performance

How many hats do you wear? If you are a CMO, you’re probably wearing at least half a dozen: brand strategist, marcom integrator, data tsar, growth officer, social master, mobile advocate—and the list goes on. Perhaps one of the most important roles played by today’s CMO is talent management. CMOs rely on their entire marketing organization, including external agency partners, to deliver results. It’s proven that successful CMOs who deliver outstanding marketing results have created strong agency partnerships that bring the magic of marketing to life.

CMOs, Orchestrating Tomorrow’s Success

Itay Talgam, in his TED Talk “Lead Like the Great Conductors,” suggests that a conductor’s job is to create conditions that allow the process of interpreting music to unfold. In much the same way, CMOs can create conditions under which their business prospers by assembling a marketing “orchestra” designed to deliver breakthrough creative and unparalleled customer experiences.

A great example of successful CMO orchestration is Olivier Francois, Chrysler and Fiat’s iconic CMO. Francois is a renowned branding wizard who built teams from top industry experts in brand marketing, communications, retail marketing, social and CRM and top-notch agency partners such as Wieden & Kennedy, The Richards Group, and Doner. This orchestra created breakthrough campaigns–“Born of Fire,” “The Things We Make, Make Us” and “Seduction”–that filled dealership showrooms and saw sales soar.

Traditional Ways of Partnering with Agencies are Obsolete

Having the right agency partner is certainly critical to marketing success, but that alone may no longer be enough. Marketing has undergone a seismic shift during the past decade, a shift of greater magnitude than perhaps any other time in our industry history. The increasing complexity of our multi-channel, multi-device world requires businesses to execute faster, smarter and more effectively than ever before. This shift affects every aspect of the CMO’s role, including agency management. Factors such as how information is shared, how performance is measured, how incentives are determined, and how we collaborate, engage and partner are all impacted.

These changes pose significant challenges to traditional ways of managing and working with agencies. The old ways are simply too slow, too labor intensive, too outdated to succeed in our fast-moving organizations. CMOs and their organization must face the music as they are on the line to deliver more with less, improve work quality and performance, and drive innovation and consumer engagement–all the while realizing improved operational effectiveness. At the same time, a company’s agency relationships are increasingly multifaceted, requiring CMOs to excel at greater collaboration and operational rigor.

The Transformational Value of Well-Orchestrated Agency Partnerships

Necessity is always the mother of invention. Industry leaders are stepping up to the challenge, adding new muscle in marketing and procurement organizations to realize greater speed and performance.

Marketers are pursuing new, innovative methods of managing agency relationships: ways to identify the best agencies, ensure clarity in Scopes of Work, make agency briefing more efficient, improve the campaign workflow, secure fair compensation agreements, measure performance, and motivate agencies to surpass expectations.

A Powerful Combination of Industry Best Practices and Technology

By combining proven best practices and leading-edge technology solutions, the most successful marketers simplify, accelerate and improve how they work with agencies and how they manage these partnerships. They streamline operational processes, standardize practices, drive efficiencies, automate recurring tasks and allow partnerships to flourish by letting their “orchestra” focus on what matters the most: creating great work that improves the bottom line and grows the business.

Today’s CMOs all agree: we need to end the mania of ineffectively managed agency relationships. It’s time to create an orchestra that will bring music to the ears of customers and shareholders alike.