The importance of Independence
We’ve seen the usual wave of agency consolidation as the global marketing groups absorbed smaller specialists, only for the cycle to start again with the launch of a new wave of start – ups and groups like WPP shedding agency brands.
There have been radical changes in the comms sector since network’s inception in 1996.
The most material change has been the extraordinary development and expansion of digital services which has changed just about everything in the communication journey from conception to delivery.
Of course we’ve also seen the usual wave of agency consolidation as the global marketing groups absorbed smaller specialists, only for the cycle to start again with the launch of a new wave of start – ups and groups like WPP shedding agency brands.
We’ve also witnessed changes in the relationship agencies have with their clients. In 1996 it was rare for a production agency to have a direct relationship with clients, although network was one of the pioneers in contracting directly with client companies. Now it’s accepted practice. Moreover many clients have developed their own in – house creative and media resource to take on much of the work traditionally assigned to third party agencies. And that looks like being an initiative that won’t be reversed any time soon.
Throughout this period network has changed too. We’ve invested in the business, expanded our services, developed digital resources and re – engineered our protocols to ensure we can deliver high quality work speedily and cost effectively.
Today we have as many people working in creative and client services as we have handling production.
Importantly we have also maintained our independence.
- Independence has ensured that we can grow with our clients, anticipate their requirements and flex our offer accordingly, unencumbered by unwieldy group structures or politics.
- Independence has meant we can continue to operate with a lean cost base, ensuring that we can always offer our clients genuine value for money.
- Independence has meant we can invest in the business in ways and at times of our own choosing.
- Independence has meant we have established our own culture and protocols.
- Independence has meant we remain free to partner with our clients’ other creative suppliers.
The network way has always been to grow organically, remain obsessively client-focused and ensure that quality control is at the heart of everything we produce.
It’s a path we will continue to pursue.
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