April 29, 2013
Our work with national and global clients – and our involvement in the Public Relations Global Network, an international organization of leading independent PR agencies – often involves working with a variety of other agency teams. From partnerships with traditional advertising agencies to digital ad firms and even other public relations teams, we view these experiences as opportunities for all of us to bring our experiences and creativity together to provide great results for our clients. Here are several of my “best practices” for working with other agencies for the same client:
- Take Time for Introductions – At the inception of each partnership, be sure each team is “on-boarded” with the brand, key messages and business insights. This step can address many questions and concerns before they even arise. And, having strong guidelines in place from the start help us to collectively execute programs more efficiently and effectively.
- Communicate – Every agency, client and team follows different procedures. Outline timelines, protocols and expectations up front so everyone on all teams is working in tandem with one another. Schedule routine times to touch base and discuss upcoming projects and deadlines to make sure all team members stay on track and are on the same page. Also, make sure to share contact information for main contacts and back-ups – in a last-minute emergency, you need to know who to call.
- Manage Expectations – We have a great team who can turn things around at the drop of a hat. It’s wonderful – but when you’re working with multiple teams on approvals, it may not always be enough. Allow as much time as possible for projects to account for the extra revisions and adjustments that come with having more sets of eyes, and keep clients up-to-date on the status of where projects stand and when they can expect to see deliverables.
- Collaborate – Being part of a team means being available to contribute, and accepting and appreciating others’ contributions. Don’t be afraid to investigate the “whys” and “hows” when feedback is given, and offer suggestions and ideas when you deliver feedback. Keep an open mind – you may learn a new best practice, or provide valuable insight that will help the other agency in your projects together moving forward.
Successful communications agencies thrive on our relationships – with clients, colleagues and other partners. These important points will keep projects moving along and ensure that the clients are happy!