Insight agencies strive to target opportunities for brands to achieve their goals. But has the sector struggled to focus on how they present and market themselves? The ever expanding complexities within the market have meant that research professionals must adapt quickly to this constantly changing environment to attract clients.
Despite this fast-paced changing landscape, brands often continue to remain with their existing research partners rather than look for a new perspective from a specialist supplier. But insightful clients want agencies that are not afraid to challenge their thinking and methodology and demand innovation. They ask the question: ‘What extra value and insight can you bring to this process?’
Often clients looked for a big name supplier, but now increasingly look past that to focus on specialists who have strong sector experience. Reputation can trump size. While many clients look for competitive tender pricing when searching for new partners, it is often word of mouth and intelligence from contacts with the industry that can provide new work for agencies. Conferences, network events and online presence also play a key part for insight professionals to attract new business.
It is clear buyers may be missing opportunities to add new dimensions for insight by omitting the new innovation and flexibility that a smaller agency could provide. Some larger agencies can’t change processes as quickly because they may have far greater investment in their existing methodologies. But smaller independent companies can move and adapt more quickly to the client’s needs.
The importance of meeting deadlines, avoiding poor quality research findings and being able to supply the right team to meet the agreed brief are essential factors for a successful relationship. Brands will often require fast results to make strategic decisions. Many see big data and the insights gleaned from them as a crucial part of the ongoing campaign for brand development and success.
Buyers demand a professional approach guided by proven experience with quicker turnarounds and more incisive insight reporting. Speed, allied with an innate understanding of the specific markets and consumer patterns, can add value to the relationship. Finding the right agency can be a long and tricky process. For instance, in large scale projects the ability to work and adapt methodology in multiple countries and languages can be a business winning advantage. Firms also want ethical practice and agencies that can deliver within budget. The reward of high value insights will beat a cheaper supplier.
If research agencies and insight professionals are to establish strong client relationships, then they must forge their own brand blue print within their area of market expertise; one that is clearly visible and accessible for existing and future clients.
Does your organization have the necessary talent, focus and vision to be able to match and attract the right clients?
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