STANDSTILL agencies are agencies
STANDOUT agencies are – not always – agencies
The term ‘agency’ is ubiquitous. It has come to mean a service provider in the marketing sector, but its original meaning was something different.
The first agencies were media only. They were set up as “agents” of the newspapers to sell ad space. They represented publishers, just as estate agents represent people selling houses, and football agents represent star players. You could argue that many digital media agencies today – unofficially – represent Google, Facebook or LinkedIn rather than the clients who actually pay their fees.
I was talking to a client of mine this week. We were discussing whether he should continue to call his business an agency. He helps large brands generate more sales on Amazon. His business is based on the transfer of knowledge, expertise and interpretation of data. He doesn’t represent Amazon or his clients, he advises his clients. We were debating whether he is actually more of a consultancy.
Does it matter I hear you ask?
Well the short answer is “no”, if you consider it as just a cosmetic change of the label which you use. If, however, you believe it might change your business model and your mindset, then it’s worthy of more consideration.
Do you represent anybody?
Are you – simply – a service provider?
If you decided not to continue with the convention of the agency label, what are the alternatives for you?