The Successful Client-Agency Relationship

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  • April 7, 2014
  • Starr Million Baker

When speaking to potential new clients, I love when we get this question: what makes for a successful client-agency relationship?  Here’s what our experience tells us:

  • Teamwork. We’re all in this together. Our best client relationships are those that consider us an integral extension of their internal team.  Part of that is communication – we believe in regular meetings, phone calls, emails and smoke signals if that’s what you prefer.
  • Inclusion.  The need for updates goes both ways. Sometimes it’s difficult for clients to remember to include us, or to think about what’s going on with the business through the eyes of PR. We can only help if we know, and sometimes what we think is a story you never well so it helps to talk these things out. Include us.
  • Autonomy.  We like to work closely with our clients to create the strategic plan, but then from there – when we know our marching orders – we’re totally fine to get it done and stay out of your way. We know you have other stuff to worry about. We can worry about PR.
  • Transparency. If something’s not working, let’s talk about it. If we need to shift strategy in the middle of a campaign, we’ll recommend it. If you want to know how many hours we spent on X, we’ll show you.
  • No yes-men. We don’t tell our clients what they want to hear, we tell them how it is. And we hope our clients do the same with us. That said, we also understand that at the end of the day it’s your business, not ours. So we hold ourselves to a three-strikes-and-you’re-out rule: we’ll tell you what we think, we’ll tell you again, we’ll try one more time and then done – it’s your business, your call, you know where we stand.

Anything I left out that you have found works for you? Would love to hear it.

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