The Weylandts in-house agency currently employs 15 people with expertise in strategy, BTL, ATL, branding, POS, digital planning and social media.
“Every brand wishes their advertising agency could spend all day everyday getting to know them, their culture, their customers and their brand essence. That knowledge would then be translated into great pieces of communication that speak powerfully to the target market, and emotionally about the brand,” says Tim Culley, Head of Marketing.
Enjoying the success of the launch of their first campaign “Tastemakers”, Tim’s vision for the year going forward is to establish the Weylandts in-house agency as the South African trendsetter, producing impactful, effective retail focussed communications.
“It has been such an encouraging first 6 months, that more than anything we want to build on what we’ve put in place, and continue to learn about the retail environment,” he says.
With 11 years of experience in the publishing, advertising and marketing industries, Tim’s advice for choosing an advertising agency is that it should suit exactly what your business needs, whether you choose an external agency or bring one in-house, the objective is that you want your agency to hone in on what your consumer is really looking for from your brand.
1. Choose Carefully
Pick an agency that suits your needs – creativity isn’t the be all and end all. Speed, service, hunger, strategy, and integration capabilities are all crucial to different clients, and vary hugely from agency to agency.
2. Be a Consumer
Ask your agency to present their work cold, and THEN to present the strategy behind it. Agencies are very good at selling you on their strategy so by the time you see the ad, you are nodding already.
3. Awards are not Always Rewarding
Don’t confuse agency awards with effective work. Even though they can be, more and more these days awards are being given for irrelevant innovative thinking, instead of effective creative thinking.
4. Let it Run
Don’t assess the success of a campaign on day one, the first week, or even after the first month. Let your campaign run and give people time to consider and act upon it. I would suggest quarterly or mid-year assessments to review rationally and revise where necessary.
5. Be Brave
If you have the opportunity and feel that you need to scrap all your strategy and rational thinking in favour of an ad or idea that people will simply love (and talk about, and share) then do it!
6. Build Solid Foundations for Long Term Success
Focus on building your brand today, and you need not worry about selling your product tomorrow.
7. Don’t Spread too Thin
Integrated campaigns across many platforms are great, if you have budget! If not, focus on penetrating one really well and as dominantly as you can!
8. DIY Advertising
If budgets are tight, be your own project manager – strategists, copywriters, art directors, photographers can all be hired freelance. Pay them for half a day, feed them a good lunch, and you could land something great for a fraction of what an agency would charge you for 2 weeks work.