Small and Large Advertising Partners

There has been a global change in the way clients intend to deal with advertisers. And small agencies are seemingly in a position to reap the rewards. So is small the new big? Clients have been looking for real relationships with their advertising partners. They want to personally know the name on the door and know that their successes are mutually aligned. Small shops are more motivated to see their clients succeed because failure is crippling.
Big Ideas From Small Places
We’ve heard about technology democratizing the creative process or how most people with a smartphone can make a movie that only huge studios could earlier make. The reality shows that brilliant ideas sometime come easily from smaller teams too. Looking at the past, great work came from fewer people and not always huge teams. Big ideas seem to come out due to the following reasons. Firstly, ideas are fragile and can be trampled when a few too many get close to it. Great ideas need a small team to get off the ground in order to become strong enough to survive public reactions. The second reason is mainly an economic principle, that is accountability. Assigning a project to everyone has a possibility that no one might do it. If more people are involved, it could be likely that no one might own it. When people sign their work, you get their great thoughts. When they know that they’ll be presenting it, they’re motivated to make it amazing
Spend Small, Think Big
Clients have been looking at optimization and cost cutting, as throwing money at problems may help or not. Clients have been demanding that advertisers need to think hard and then spend smart. It could also mean that advertisers have to get their brand house in order before they spend a dime. Smaller agencies can do this better than larger agencies. This is because bigger providers have invested heavily in certain disciplines and are predisposed to use them. Have a huge department? Recommend the same. A huge search team? Recommend SEM. Small agencies can be non believers in execution in the beginning, as their business model is built on idea creation and partnering with best-in-class vendors for execution.
Small Assignments, Big ROI
Clients moving towards ROI is a reality we must all face. It is easy for larger clients to try out projects with smaller agencies due to the low entry barrier. These result in a win win for everyone involved. Big clients see a great ROI and are exposed to some fresh thinking. The opportunity for smaller advertising teams would be in growing these into longer and more meaningful engagements. The reason behind this is that small provides are highly motivated to take up smaller projects and treat them with the importance clients believe should be assigned. If a big name client gave a retail assignment to another large agency, it would go to the C-team, and be pushed out unceremoniously. But if the same assignment went to a small shop, it would be celebrated, anguished over, and delivered with passion and conviction.
The industry is constantly changing and that is one thing we know for sure. At a recent gathering with a group of small advertising agency owners, we realized so much is written about the big agencies making big noise that we worked out that we are a pretty like-minded bunch. The small agencies do play a role in the larger agency eco-system. A point to remember would be that all big shops started small and grew by doing great work. Cheers to agencies small in size, but big in ambition.

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