The brand/agency working dynamic appears to be suffering a noticeable decline as rates of improvement from the latter in regards to the former drop from 70% in 2015 to just 53% for this year.  

Conducted on 629 companies around the world, trade body SoDA’s ‘Global Digital Outlook Survey’ reveals a huge drop in the amount of agencies agreeing that their relationships with brands were getting better. 

But this isn’t surprising, according to notes from the report, as agencies are being forced to work towards more “diverse and innovative” projects at the request of their clients.

SoDA believes advertisers are also more willing to work with a number of partners to get the results they need, with this potentially having an impact on their loyalty towards one partner.

Downward spiral

Drilling down further into the rates of satisfaction, the report shows that agencies with a digital-only offering are slightly more content with how the dynamic with their clients is progressing. That said, there is only 3% separating the levels of improvement between themselves and agencies with a traditional and digital remit. 

In an effort to see why the decline has been so drastic between Q1 2015 and the same period in 2016, SoDA looked into what advertisers wanted the most out of their agencies, with the same asked of the agencies involved in the report.

The findings show common ground between the pair in regards to luxuries like strategic leadership and marketing creativity, which took first and second placings for both sides.

Customer-centric marketing showed one of the biggest differences in opinion; placing third in the clients-to-agencies table, but sixth from the perspective of agencies to clients. 


Other factors included in the table were technology capabilities, product and service innovation, marketing and market research, and process and project management, all of which showed that clients and agencies can get on by revealing a maximum difference of one place per side.