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How Your Agency Must Be a Great Partner During COVID-19

Published: March 30, 2020

Author: David Rodnitzky

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrust turmoil upon companies in a huge range of industries. Whether your products or services are realizing significantly decreased or increased demand, new pressures are developing almost daily as traffic, costs, and messaging needs fluctuate.

At 3Q Digital, I’ve always preached that our account teams must treat client businesses as though they’re our businesses. To me, that means clients should expect (and demand) the following:

  1. Agencies must act like true partners and let you take a month or two off to catch your breath if needed. 
  2. In the spirit of acting like your business is your agency’s business, ask for daily (or hourly) checks of performance numbers and quick analysis of trends. Demand proactive suggestions to increase or reduce budget according to your business goals. 
  3. Agencies should provide perspective and to help you identify signals that suggest that consumer behavior is reverting back to the mean, and it’s time to resume to more normal strategies and buying habits.
  4. No matter which channels/services you and your agency are partnering on, ask them to help you vet every touchpoint and make recommendations on how you can pivot your services/products to meet current demands. For instance, if you launch a new delivery service via email, ask your agency to help ensure other channels are aligned with the messaging and promotion strategy.
  5. Ask your agency to go beyond the day to day to give context on where your industry is trending and how you should work to position yourself in three months, six months, etc. Your agency should be able to pull lots of data to help you see the future and the big picture.
  6. Ask for compassion. Presumably, you and your marketing team are under unique pressures from circumstances none of us have been through before. If you need flexibility, extra resources, fast turnarounds, more Zoom meetings, etc., it’s the right time to expect them.
  7. Ask for flexibility. At 3Q, we’re offering a “Performance Protection” package to help clients get through this time and come out in the best possible shape (if you’re interested in hearing more, Sr. Business Development Director Josh Conrad has the details).

In general, there are lots of ways agencies can help in-house teams during this incredibly chaotic time. To give you ideas and thought starters, I’ve written a guide for how (and why) an agency can be your best friend during COVID-19. There are lots of great options out there; help is available if you need it.
No matter what your course of action, please make sure it involves health and safety above all. We’re all partners in helping get through this pandemic.

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