As agencies and management consulting firms adapt to the digital environment, brands face a complex array of options. Agencies founded on the basis of 30-second TV ads often struggle to develop digital products, while those creating top-notch websites might be unable to reach consumers on other media platforms.
L2’s Marketing Agencies report guides brands through the major types of agencies and offers insight into their respective strengths and weaknesses.
Examples: Siegel + Gale, Brand Union
For brands that: Need help with well-defined traditional marketing services
Core competency: Defining a brand. Some clients work with one of these agencies to establish their brand identity and then partner with other agencies for execution-focused work.
Weak spot: Technology.
Methodologies and deliverables: Mature and predictable. Firms working with new clients might entertain initial engagements from $100,000 to $250,000. Even large-scale, global brand strategy engagements aren’t likely to exceed $1.5 million.
Examples: Ignite Social Media, Targetbase
For brands that: Need help with something specific
Core competency: Discrete services. Examples: SEO/SEM, social media strategy and management, digital analytics, platform-specific technology services.
Weak spot: Client services.
Methodologies and deliverables: Project sizes vary widely. In general, a specialty firm will consider individual scopes of work that have budgets as low as $150,000. However, contracts above $3 to $5 million could be challenging for them.
Examples: Deloitte Digital, Huge
For brands that: Are global enterprises looking to completely transform their business model, brand, market position, technology infrastructure, and product lines
Core competency: Technology talent and sophistication
Weak spot: Traditional marketing services
Methodologies and deliverables: These firms are best suited to help with engagements, or at least annual relationships, that have a portfolio of projects ranging between $3 million and $20 million. Small brands with budgets less than $1 million should be cautious about working with these agencies, as they will struggle to deliver small, nimble projects.
Examples: J Walter Thompson, Ogilvy & Mather
For brands that: Want to connect to consumers through TV ads, billboards, direct marketing efforts, or branded content
Core competency: Storytelling
Weak spot: Account management due to use of network partners
Methodologies and deliverables: Projects often include both media budgets and advertising budgets and range from $3 million to more than $10 million.
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