collaboration-imageBack in February, our CEO Jonas Klit Nielsen, shared his thoughts in a guest post on Findgood’s Blog. The post addressed the key factors in building a successful client-agency relationship.

A new report from the IPA (Institute of Practitioners in Marketing) and Hall & Partners, “From Mad Men to Sad Men”, now reveals that the challenge to build and maintain a positive and flourishing collaboration between agency and client is more difficult than ever before.

With that in mind, it seems relevant to re-share Jonas’ thoughts on the subject, and reflect a bit on what we, whether agency or client side, can do to strengthen relationships and focus on creating brilliant work that delivers great results.

 

Transparency

It’s 2015 and the world has become more transparent than ever – this is also a universal truth when it comes to the future of great client-agency relationships.

Without being transparent in how you do business, you won’t be able to be honest about your demands and deliveries, and thus push each other’s boundaries, which is absolutely key to building a strong and productive relationship. When you start building new relations hang on to the thought that both parties want you to be successful. If you’re not, you won’t be able to create dents in the universe together.

 

Trust

We have been working with social media since 2008, which means that for many of our clients we have entered unknown territory together. When exploring new opportunities, with no best practices or well-documented approaches established, clients understandably need to trust you, and it becomes vital for both parties to always stay aligned in regard to expectations.

As an agency you don’t have to push the limits of your clients every day and all the time, but when you ask them to take a leap of faith, do it with eyes wide open and with all the calculated risks on the table. Most clients are prepared to take risks, they just want to know which, and be able to take the possible implications into consideration.

Working with social media involves handing over some control to the users and to us as an agency. Some would say that the loss of control is inevitable, but don’t lose sight of the state the client is in and the objectives you have agreed to – if you acknowledge where the client is coming from and where they are today, they will trust your guidance and let you be part of their future.

 

Increase Collaboration

We believe that great content can come from any of our clients’ stakeholders. That belief presents a challenge for us, as we need to work closely with the entire team of appointed agencies without increasing the complexity for the clients. The clients demand daily collaboration and expect everyday operations to run smoothly.

To meet this challenge we started thinking about our client-agency relationship from a holistic perspective: What if we could be the solution by creating an editorial structure that de-complicates the task of managing social brand channels with multiple client stakeholders?

The greatest thing about this holistic approach and our implemented processes is not only being more successful in meeting the demands of our clients, but in our journey we have become much more efficient from an internal perspective, giving us a competitive advantage. Our learning is that when evaluating all our processes the key is well-documented structures but at the same time keeping it simple.

 

And please… Stick with the right stuff

As social media has moved up the brand strategy funnel over the years, we experience an increasing number of requests to take on tasks outside of our specialty, something that might seem very tempting.

Agencies can pitch to take over more and more duties within different disciplines, but if you’re a niche agency such as ours, you’ll come out better and stronger if you know when to withdraw from tasks too far away from your core competences. From a client perspective you might ask a separate appointed agency to do extra tasks to avoid adding another agency to your list, but then you risk not getting the level of expertise the task actually requires.

As an agency you risk either having a disappointed client, loosing the relationship to the client’s other agencies or ending up with a satisfied client but an unhappy accountant. As Seth Godin says “Quit the wrong stuff. Stick with the right stuff. Have the guts to do one or the other.”

 

Which key factors have you found crucial for building a valuable client-agency relationship?

 

 

londoncallingAt Mindjumpers we have had the pleasure to work with global brands ever since our beginning in 2008. We have evolved from being a ‘two man project’ to become a leading social media management company with more than 30 passionate social geeks working out of Copenhagen.

Thanks to clients such as Skype, Elton John Aids Foundation and agency collaborations with Brooklyn Brothers, Mother and not least Sunshine, we have been doing more and more business in and out of London and collected more flyer bonuses than many the last couple of years.

 

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As auto-play videos is now being fully established on Facebook, the social network is looking into ways to increase the quality of the ads displayed in the News Feed. A new ad format called a cinemagraph could be the answer and it is expected to start appearing soon.

The cinemagraph is nothing new – it’s moving GIFs, but with the motion being restrained to just a few parts of the image. The effect is quite hypnotic and certainly attention-grabbing especially when played in a loop, a feature Facebook just added to Instagram this month.

 

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A recent report from Radium One shed some light on the concept of “Dark Social”. A dominant but seldom discussed force in online sharing.

Among other things the research showed that 32 % of people who share content online would only share via Dark Social. It represents up to three times the social sharing activity of Facebook alone.

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We all know that tight deadlines and a busy everyday life at the office can make you compromise or perhaps skip double-checking. Therefore, as a little help to content marketeers, we have made a small checklist. By following this you will hopefully avoid too many major mistakes.

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Last week Twitter launched the new video feature making it possible for users to easily capture and share videos without leaving the app.
The launch comes in a time where the social platform has been struggling to keep up with Facebook-owned and video-enabled Instagram. Furthermore, a new group direct message feature was added, which appears to be an invite for the mobile-focused millennials who seem to prefer group messaging apps such as WhatsApp (another Facebook property via acquisition) as well as Snapchat.

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The Content Marketing Institute has for the seventh consecutive year compiled 60 content marketing predictions from thought leaders around the world. Here are some of our favorites:

 

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