Most clients find that their grievances with advertising agencies
fall on deaf ears, with shops more interested in wooing new business
prospects than in looking after their existing clients.
These are the findings of a report published by Relationship Audits and
Management, which audits and assists client services companies.
More than three-quarters of those surveyed admitted that while changing
agencies was a last resort, inevitably it was because their agencies had
not listened to them.
The report surveyed more than 2,000 clients at senior and middle
management level. The common thread was that accountability had become
increasingly important in all aspects of the client/agency relationship,
with 75 per cent of client decisions to move based on perceived poor
The clients surveyed added that they felt agencies were spending too
much time trying to make a fast buck by wooing potential new business at
the expense of existing clients. Nearly three-quarters said they thought
agencies incentivised staff to win new business, while only 19 per cent
believed the account team was rewarded for good management.
Seventy-five per cent of unhappy clients that are seeking a replacement
agency have not told their incumbent, according to the report.
Simon Rhind-Tutt, the managing director of RAM, said: ’Clients would
rather not move their business unless absolutely necessary as the costs
are considerable, but there is a distinct lack of relationship
maintenance in the advertising industry.
’There is a feeling that agencies need to focus on profitability and
building relationships and not just on picking up new business.’