MARLA: What agencies have been able to do
is leverage thinking across a number of different clients
and the great thing about agencies I would say this is like
they just figure it out.
So whether it was production
or any sort of solution that needed to be done,
they just came together.
TARA: In this episode of The Update
I speak with Marla Kaplowitz
about why marketing partners
are more important than ever
and what agencies are doing to deliver
even more value to their clients.
I’m curious; you’ve talked before about the pandemic basically being a hyper catalyst
for helping agencies to focus on what they do best
which is really solving clients’ business problems.
So curious what you’re seeing there…
how that’s coming to life?
MARLA: So I see it coming to life in a few ways.
The first is it’s really improved the client agency relationship.
You don’t have to focus on the minutiae.
You’re focusing on the most important problems
of the day and what are the strategic business challenges
in ways that agencies can be provocative
and really help marketers embrace the risk-taking
to really kind of get through these crises.
The next area is new business.
People had to suddenly do virtual pitching but it’s also streamlined the number of meetings.
There’ve been far too much dragging out of new business pitches
and let’s focus on what’s most important in understanding
the dynamic of the partnership
that could come to life as well as the work that can be delivered.
And then the last is in the area of work
in terms of working remotely
streamlining the way that it gets done.
We now also have the access to greater talent
so you don’t have to focus on geography and that opens up
the possibilities with diversity, equity and inclusion
not just in terms of your work environment,
but also your work product.
TARA: One of the biggest challenges is as you mentioned the incredible volatility
in advertiser and agency situation, which is a little bit unlike
some of the past when people rose and fell together.
What are you hearing from agencies?
What’s the spectrum?
What do they want your help with?
MARLA: Yeah. I mean they have wanted our help.
So if you go back to the beginning with COVID,
they immediately wanted our help with
What is the kind of message that we should be putting out?
So we did some research early on
almost every week we were doing research
to kind of gauge consumers
and where the sentiment was around
as they were working with marketers.
We also had agencies trying to