In today's competitive marketplace, efficient and effective marketing has become a hallmark of successful businesses. Engaging potential customers and moving them to make a decision is both an art and a science, requiring a diverse set of skills that no one person can possess.
That's where marketing agencies come in.
It's a Team Effort
Marketing agencies are made up of strategists, creative professionals (graphic designers, writers, photographers, etc.), web developers, account managers and a number of other roles. Because no one person can possibly wear all of these hats at once, engaging a marketing agency allows businesses to cost-effectively leverage the knowledge and skillsets of this diverse range of professionals.
Businesses of all shapes and sizes see incredible results when an agency of record is enabled, empowered and trusted to "get creative". The bottom line is that, in collaboration with the client's internal industry experts, the agency of record becomes responsible for both the medium and the message for the company, managing functions ranging from research and strategy to creative development and production.
So How Does It Work?
Traditionally, the agency of record (also known as an AOR) is contracted by a company or individual to manage marketing planning, media strategy, PR efforts and third-party purchases including printing or website hosting. In addition to these services, the agency also provides creative and consulting services to help their clients develop strategic advertising campaigns both online and off.
The agency of record essentially becomes the company's marketing department.
Larger companies may have multiple agencies of record to handle specialized functions like social media, email marketing or international advertising needs. To mitigate communication challenges involved in handling multiple agencies, small to medium-sized companies will likely only have one.
Typically, but not always, companies enter into a contract with an agency, usually committing to a set period of time or to a single project or ad campaign. Many companies choose an agency and stick with it for decades, only switching as part of a radical restructuring if it becomes apparent that the agency no longer meets their needs.
The Benefits of an Agency of Record
Here’s what gives an AOR a distinct advantage:
- They are specialists in message development and will have a higher likelihood of engaging intended audiences to achieve their marketing goals
- They have the ability to buy media in bulk at rates that a single business cannot
- They are specialists in media placement and can ultimately minimize wasted time and resources
- As they are a separate entity, they tend to be more objective and more inclined to think outside the box
- The range and depth of people in the agency will typically exceed the expertise that a normal company will have in-house
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