The PR and marketing industry has been changed quite significantly by the COVID19 crisis, and while I might be being optimistic, I think we’ll see a rise in the opportunities for boutique PR and marketing agencies as the industry starts to recover.
Businesses are cutting overheads
There really isn’t one industry that hasn’t felt some sort of impact from the COVID19 crisis – its reach is so widespread and so significant that our Government is now preparing us for a recession that could last years. So what does this mean for businesses? Businesses will be looking to cut overheads and reduce costs where they can and it is this behaviour that will benefit boutique agencies moving forward.
The COVID19 crisis has highlighted how quickly businesses can be hit for six; businesses who were flying along and growing exponentially suddenly came to a screeching halt, and it’s become a real eye-opener for many decision makers. Businesses are now looking at how to run more cost effectively, how they continue their same level of output and get back onto their growth pathway without spending anywhere near the same levels as they were previously.
It’s a challenging feat for business owners and executive teams, but it is one that lends itself in favour of clever PR and marketing agencies.
Utilising an agency is a very cost effective way to continue to drive your marketing activities without the need for multiple in-house roles. For those of us in agency-land, we’ll see an influx of client work and increased jobs within our sector and this is a really great thing. While many in-house marketing teams will be downsized and operating on a much more ‘lean’ model, the opportunities within an agency environment will grow as decision makers start to look at how to shift their spending and subsequently their ROI with an agency.
Experience, experience, experience
One of the biggest draw cards for a business to opt for an agency is the ability for true integration, specialists across multiple industries and the level of experience you have right at your fingertips. While in-house roles have been very popular, an agency provides businesses with a team of experienced and skilled professionals, experts across multiple industries and a broad level of professional experience – from Director levels, Associates and Graduates – for a fraction of the cost of one full time role.
To a business, this appeal is hard to go past and it’s easy to understand why. Why pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for an internal team of marketing experts, when you can pay a very small portion of that to an agency who can essentially operate in a very similar way and generate substantial results for your business.
As we move out of the COVID19 crisis, this will be on the minds of many business owners and executive teams and we’ll see more and more opportunities for smart and agile agencies that can adapt to this new normal.
Project by project
For some brands, an always on marketing or PR strategy isn’t the right fit and this is where an agency’s ability to offer project by project work becomes a huge draw card. Agencies are agile by nature so operating in a project capacity works well for brands who aren’t looking for the whole kit and caboodle, and let’s face it, in this uncertain economic environment, this approach will certainly be appealing to many businesses, particularly those playing in the small to medium space.
The right people for the right approach
With diversity at the heart of all agencies, as a business, you can ensure you’re getting the right people for the right job. Need an expert in wine PR? Then you’ll have a team of people who understand the wine media space inside and out (and are fond of a glass of vino or two).
By working across numerous industries, agencies have grown the expertise of their staff to be broader than a typical in-house employee. For example, I specialise in wine, food, travel, FMCG products, business, tech and growth industries – it’s a pretty broad remit, but by working across these industries for many, many years, it’s enabled me to fine tune my knowledge in each. If I was working in an in-house role, this simply wouldn’t be possible due to the nature of the role I would have.
This is another feather in an agency’s cap; with expertise in the right industries for your business, you’re guaranteed to be able to tap into more brains, more ideas and more creative thinking than one in-house role can typically give you.
Not all agencies are equal.
While this piece is a little ‘ode to agencies’, it’s important to note that unfortunately not all agencies are equal. The agencies that will see growth post COVID19 are the ones who are clever, agile, creative, strategic and understand business objectives, don’t base their work off vanity metrics and aren’t fans of the typical fluffy approach which can be rife within the industry.
Hard work and grit will see businesses succeed post COVID19 and it’s important to find an agency that ‘fits’ your business, gets your direction and wants to work with you to hit common goals and objectives.
If you’re looking to explore working with a smart, boutique PR and marketing agency, then get in touch – firstname.lastname@example.org
Written by Director and Co-Founder, Erin Sing.