Multi Media In The Press

24-May-2012

Time to end the madness

Ad News May 2012 Published an article written by Multi's managing director Meg Gossert

 

It is indeed an absolute fact that in the last two years, the large media agencies have operated with a kill or squash attitude when it comes to the processes they use to win business.

Having been in this business for 50 years and running my current business for 25 years, we as a small boutique agency have suffered the onslaught of the large companies targeting our clients, and agreeing to work for them at remuneration packages that are just not profitable.

A client we held for 15 years left our doors for a cheaper offer and their experience saw the client re-pitch their business in less than 2 years. The client experienced junior staff, no strategic input, mismanagement of their business, very poor service and yet having had a media agency agree to work on their business at an unprofitable margin the client now expects to get better service elsewhere for the same price. It’s not worth it.

The industry has imploded on itself. The profits made by the larger agencies often eventuate through unethical practices, the inevitable slush fund of “overs and unders”, working their junior and inexperienced staff to exhaustion (for little money) and burning the client. Wake up people. This business is not about cutting margins. This business is not about who can offer the cheapest service.

It’s about delivering value to your clients. Value not just in price, but service, strategy, honesty and above all, building a trusting long term relationship with your clients.

 

Media agencies are entrusted with vast amounts of money and we need to be open, honest and ethical in how these funds are managed. It is our job to help grow our client’s business through the provision of a professional service, not to make money for ourselves by providing poor advice, low fees and overworking underpaid and under experienced staff. The industry has allowed itself to be placed in this position. We at Multi realize that business based on price only is not going to be long term business and our clients have grown to realize that we have saved them a lot of money by giving them the right advice, being proactive in our approach to their business, maintaining our staff, and being ethical in the way we conduct business.

Today however, it seems the media business is all about turnover. It’s not about putting the ‘Xs’ in the right boxes anymore. It’s just about getting as many ‘Xs’ as possible and who cares if it works.

We all know some of the major media shops is in this country have marched out hard with this mindset and whilst they may have the turnover, they won’t gain a long term reputation in the market that is respected. Unfortunately clients can be naïve and often they are lured in by a slick presentation with the promise of low fees. Once the reality of poor service and mismanagement by junior staff sets in the client is left with a less than favourable opinion of our industry. Many times, the client is locked in to a water tight contract, and the only person suffering is the client. What happened to treating the client with respect? Getting results, and putting solid thought into an outcome that provides a result?

We’re all to blame. Lift your standards industry, and seek to be paid what you are worth.