Whether you’re just starting out working with an agency or have been doing so for a while, it’s important to know how to make this relationship as productive as possible. There are four simple rules that I’ve learned over the years of being on both the client and the agency side:
1. Be respectful: Respect your agency’s time and resources as you would your own. Agencies are there to help. Let them do that by giving them as much warning as possible when you need a project done, so they can rearrange their resources to accommodate your needs. And be sure to pay on time – there’s nothing more disrespectful than someone who doesn’t pay promptly.
2. Share: Include key agency people in important meetings and tell them any organizational news that is shared internally. Again, give them the tools they need to help you be successful. If they are in the dark about the winds of change, they can’t be thinking of solutions for you.
Next week I’ll share rules #3 and #4.
When you have a strong agency relationship, you’ll have a partner who can pull you out of almost any pickle that can happen in a rapidly changing environment. And that is worth its weight in gold.