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Advertising Agencies

Updated on January 12, 2015

What Are Advertising Agencies?

Not so long ago, when the words, "advertising agency" were uttered, everyone's mind drifted back to Darren Stevens from Bewitched. If you don't know what that means, never mind, you probably weren't born yet. It's not important, anyway.

Today, creative advertising agencies do much more than they did when Darren was working for Larry Tate. Back then, I think they mostly drew on story boards and came up with catchy slogans. I may be wrong, I was pretty young myself when I watched the show.

Basically, advertising agencies work to create, execute and manage a client's advertising and promotional needs. This may include developing logos, preparing jingles or slogans, pamphlets and other sales materials, radio and TV commercial spots, infomercials, internet advertising and media, trade shows and promotional products. Some agencies go further, supplying a full menu of sales and marketing management. Customers can mix and match to meet their needs and as their budgets allow.

Clients can use an advertising agency for a single ad campaign or employee them on an ongoing basis.

How It Works

When a client chooses one of the advertising agencies to work with, the person or people assigned to their account will take the time to become better acquainted with both the client and the client's products or services. This familiarity helps to form a better ad strategy because the agency has a clearer picture of the client company's goals, ideals and missions, as well as their customer demographic and are able to put together a suitable advertising package.

The benefit of learning about a client's products is obvious. Knowing what they do, who they affect and how, will feed the agency the information they need to proceed with promoting the products to the correct target audience.

I know that this hub portrays ad agencies as brick and mortar businesses and many are, but that needn't be so. You can find an internet advertising agency or a selection of online advertising agencies by doing a few thorough searches. Remember though, to practice extreme due diligence before parting with any of your hard earned money.

What to Look For When Hiring An Ad Agency

As with all things, a word of mouth referral from someone you know and trust is the best way to start. There are a few other things to look for, as well:

* Is the agency a member of any professional organizations? There are a number of advertising associations in many countries. The ones to look for are those which govern over the practices of individual advertising agencies. The American Advertising Federation is a good example.

* Check with the Better Business Bureau to ascertain if there have been any complaints lodged against the agency that you're thinking of working with. See if you can find any ratings or reports.

* Assuming you feel reasonably confident in the agency you're considering, ask to see some samples of campaigns that they've done. It doesn't hurt to ask how successful the campaigns were. If they can supply you with time lines and figures, all the better.

* This pointer came from MSorensson: The agency should have capital to launch a project with all the investments on the person/project, without the person having to spend the money, as long as they are reasonably certain they will get their investment in full and then some. Thanks, MSorensson!

* Another good tip from Ramkkasturi:  It helps to seek an agency that can handle direct marketing, as well. Thank-you, Ramkkasturi!

A Couple of Other Points

Working with good, experienced advertising agencies can help a client realize enormous returns on their investment. However, that being said, this service is not cheap. For people and companies who can afford it though, it is typically worth every cent.

I have read that there can be a waiting period with the crème de la crème agencies but I can't really say, I don't know. It makes sense. There are only so many creative minds to work on so many creative advertising campaigns.

If you are lucky enough to take this route and trust the promotion of your business to advertising agencies, I'm sure you'll be more than pleased with the results.

© 2010 Shirley Anderson


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