Agencies can often be viewed by clients as separate entities or outsiders to their brand and company. After all, we are not the same and that’s why they’ve hired us. However, it is crucial to disregard any differences there may be when creating and executing a project, because both you and the client are aiming to achieve the same end goal: successful and fruitful results.
From the very beginning, all the way through to post-project communications, it is essential to become an extension of your client’s team – one team, one goal, and remember it’s all about the audience, whether internal or external. There are various ways of doing this. One way we do it is by placing an implant in our client’s office. It sounds clinical, however, what it really means is placing someone from your team into their team during the duration of the project.
Below are some more prevalent reasons why an implant works:
With busy schedules and the availability of conference calls, face time can be disregarded when it should really be at the forefront, and an implant eradicates any possible lack of communication.
With an implant, there is the opportunity to get to know the team and client really well, alongside being available physically, and this personal, on-site, face-to-face presence truly integrates you into the day-to-day progress of the project.
For a project to truly work and be delivered well, there must be consistent communication between all parties. In a normal situation, updates and catch-ups may occur daily or weekly, depending on the timescales of the project. However, with an implant who is in your client’s team 24/7 there is the ability to consistently communicate for the duration of a project.
This enables strong productivity and continuity in the process and progress. The significance of collaboration and communication includes them in decisions and, as an agency, we are also closer to their decisions too.
Being in their team physically means the opportunity to learn more about each other and know exactly what a project/team/client requires from us in real time. If you discover that the company is quite different to your own then these differences can be used to benefit the project. Similarly, if your company and the client’s company are akin to each other, then this can also work to your advantage. As the agency, we sometime have to be the Chameleon and work to the client’s way of doing things. An implant is extremely effective in this way because they are able to physically learn:
- How the client works – such as sign-off processes and how they manage their teams
- The structure of the team working on the project
- The company’s values and culture
- Their brand and USPs
The major benefit of being/having an implant involves understanding. This is understanding beyond the brief of the particular project or event, and includes the wider conversations that might be taking place within an organisation, and how this affects things. It also opens up opportunities, for both parties, of seeing where support can be offered, and exposing your company to different areas of the organisation.
For the client, having an implant offers them a higher level of specialist resource and understanding of what they are trying to achieve. Alongside this, there is a better insight into different solutions and what you as an agency can offer them.
During any given project, issues can crop up and these need to be dealt with effectively. If there is an implant then they are there straightaway at the forefront of the problem and can be quick to offer the solution. Being present, engaged, and proactive helps to deal with any issues more easily and an implant enhances this.
Client trust can be gained a lot more easily with an implant, and can emphasise that you are all working toward a common goal: saving money and achieving the desired results.
Finally, the consumers/audience/customers are less likely to be able to recognise the difference between you and your client with an implant. At drp, we take great pride in working closely with our clients’ teams and their customers with implants, or simply immersing ourselves in their brands.
Communication is key and working together ensures tangible, sustainable and impressive results.
Dale Parmenter – CEO at drp