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Like Cars on a Road…The Agency/Client Relationship

Various vehicles travelling down straight highwayMost of my colleagues live within 20 miles of the wedü office in downtown Manchester, New Hampshire and enjoy pretty easy commutes. I am one of the few wedüites who lives in Massachusetts and while I’m grateful to not be commuting to Boston (notorious for its traffic snarls), I still commute 40 miles each way, which equates to about an hour-and-a-half round-trip on a good day. During the seven-plus hours I spend in my vehicle each week, I usually listen to my Phish shows or talk radio and think about a lot of things: Client project deliverables, upcoming deadlines, weekend errands and if it has been one of those days – absolutely nothing. I also get to see a lot of different types of drivers along the way. One client project I am particularly honored to be involved with is the NH Driving Toward Zero Deaths Program, whose goal is to reduce the number of serious injuries and deaths on New Hampshire roadways to zero. Being closely involved in this project has affected the way I drive and the way I observe other drivers on the road, which I categorize into three groups:
  • The right-lane driver – this driver is content to do the speed limit and stay out of the way of other drivers
  • The middle-lane driver – this driver strives to bypass the slow lane driver, driving a little bit faster than the speed limit, but not out for a Sunday drive
  • The left-lane driver – this driver always travels in the far left lane at least 20 miles per hour over the speed limit and doesn’t have any problem letting other drivers know that they are driving way too slow.
The traits of these three types of drivers mirror the types of clients we encounter in the marketing agency world and while it’s important for agencies to be able to recognize their unique traits, not every agency does. The “right lane client” looks to an agency to provide sound guidance to help them achieve their goals using traditional, tried-and-true marketing strategies and tactics. These clients usually aren’t interested in the newest options and trends. The “middle-lane client” is a bit more adventurous and open to the idea of implementing cutting-edge strategies and new technology, as long as that proven foundation is in place. And the “left-lane client” is open to new strategies and will eagerly embrace the newest and hottest marketing trends. These clients have high tolerance for risk vs. reward and the project outcomes are very often simply awesome! At wedü, we work with a variety of clients who represent a broad range of industries. This breadth of experience gives us great perspective in gauging our clients’ comfort levels with various strategies and tactics, from traditional print advertising to social media and digital public relations to augmented reality and responsive design. To quote a colleague, “wedü plays well in the sand-box.” Usually this is in reference to our philosophy of working collaboratively with partners on client projects. But I think it also uniquely describes the type of agency wedü is and strives to be: We are a nationally-recognized digital marketing agency and leaders in providing comprehensive online and off-line marketing strategies and initiatives.  Our in-house team comprises professionals from a wide range of backgrounds who bring expertise in both traditional and the latest digital strategies and trends. We recognize that each client is unique – each is a different type of “driver” – and we are equipped to identify and recommend the strategies and tactics that make the most sense for any given client or situation. If your company is considering working with a marketing agency, first consider what type of “driver” your company is and be sure that the agency you partner with knows how to play in your sandbox. Image Credit: Horia Varlan
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