Member Satisfaction with Media Agencies

April 27, 2009

Overview

In January and February 2009, the ANA polled members of its Advertising Financial Management committee on their media agency relationships - specifically:

  • Members' satisfaction with their media buying and planning agencies' overall performance
  • Members' satisfaction with media agency staffing levels and account management
  • Whether these agencies also handled online buying or planning
  • Strengths in strategic media thinking, leadership, and innovation

Thirteen client-side marketers responded to the survey. Agencies discussed in this benchmark include:

MEDIA BUYING

  • Starcom (2 responses)
  • Mindshare (2 responses)
  • Mediaedge:cia
  • OMD
  • GSD&M Idea City
  • Media Kitchen
  • HSR Business to Business
  • MGSCOMM (Machado Garcia-Serra)
  • MediaVest
  • RJ Palmer
  • Zenith Optimedia

MEDIA PLANNING

  • Starcom (2 responses)
  • Mindshare (2 responses)
  • Mediaedge:cia
  • OMD
  • GSD&M Idea City
  • Media Kitchen
  • HSR Business to Business
  • MGSCOMM (Machado Garcia-Serra)
  • MediaVest
  • MPG (Havas)

ONLINE (wherein the agency differed from the members' other agencies)

  • Neo@Ogilvy
  • Fuor Digital
  • Razorfish
  • Performix (Publicis)
  • MPG
  • Media Contacts (Havas)
  • Webmetro

Details of members' attitudes toward their media agencies can be found in the survey results below.

Key Findings

Nearly two thirds of respondents expressed satisfaction with their media agencies - both for planning and buying and for traditional and online media. Members were unenthusiastic about senior agency management involvement in their accounts.

  • High Satisfaction with Media Buying
    Eight members (62%) reported high satisfaction levels with their media buying agency, and five (38%) reported average satisfaction. No members characterized themselves as dissatisfied with their media buying agencies.
  • High Satisfaction with Media Planning
    Six members (50%) reported high satisfaction levels with their media planning agency, and
    five members (42%) reported average satisfaction. One member (8%) was dissatisfied, and an additional member reported having no planning agency.
  • High Satisfaction with Online Media Planning or Purchasing
    Eight members (62%) reported high satisfaction levels with their online media agency, and three (23%) reported average satisfaction. Two members (15%) were dissatisfied.
  • Lukewarm Account Management
    Eight members (62%) characterized agency senior management as "somewhat involved" in their accounts. Four members (31%) described senior management as "very involved." One person characterized agency management as "not noticeably involved."
  • Acceptable Staffing & Turnover
    The majority of members expressed satisfaction with staffing and turnover. One member was dissatisfied with their media buying and planning agency's staffing; one member expressed dissatisfaction with their online media agency's staffing, and one member expressed dissatisfaction with agency turnover.  
Survey Results

Following is the breakdown of member responses to these questions:

1. OVERALL PERFORMANCE
My company's current media-buying AOR is: _________________________
 
My satisfaction with the agency's overall performance is:
___High
___Average
___We're dissatisfied

My company's current media-planning AOR is:  _______________________

My satisfaction with the agency's overall performance is:
___High
___Average
___We're dissatisfied


Do these agencies also plan and purchase your online media (including paid search)? Yes/No

If no, which agency(ies) do you use? ___________________________

My satisfaction with this agency's overall performance is:
___High
___Average
___We're dissatisfied

2. STAFFING
Are the staffing levels satisfactory to service your account?

  • Media-buying agency: Yes/No
  • Media-planning agency: Yes/No

Is there more turnover than you would like?

  • Media-buying agency: Yes/No
  • Media-planning agency: Yes/No

3. MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
To what degree is senior management involved in your business?
___Very Involved
___Somewhat involved
___Not noticeably involved

4. KEY STRENGTHS
Thinking about agencies that you've worked with past AND present, please name those that you believe show excellence in:

Strategic media thinking ____________, _____________, ____________
Leadership  ____________, _____________, ____________
Innovation  ____________, _____________, ____________


MEMBER RESPONSE #1

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: Starcom
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current media-planning AOR: Starcom
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current online planning: Starcom plans/purchases online, but not search.
Satisfaction with overall performance: High

Paid search is handled by a separate agency, Webmetro.  We are happy with them. They do a decent job of optimizing our media, maybe a little light on strategy. Staffing has improved.

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable.

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Somewhat involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (current or former agencies)
Starcom has shown excellence in strategic media thinking, leadership, innovation.


MEMBER RESPONSE #2

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: Mindshare.
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current media-planning AOR: Mindshare.
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current online planning: Mindshare.
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable.

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Somewhat involved in our business.


MEMBER RESPONSE #3

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: Mindshare
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current media-planning AOR: Mindshare
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current online planning: Neo@Ogilvy
Satisfaction with overall performance: High

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable.

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Very involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (current or former agencies)
Mindshare and Neo@Ogilvy have shown excellence in strategic media thinking, leadership, innovation.


MEMBER RESPONSE #4

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: MediaEdge:cia
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current media-planning AOR: MediaEdge:cia
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current online planning: MediaEdge:cia
Satisfaction with overall performance: Dissatisfied

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable - except online, where there is too much turnover.

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Somewhat involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (current or former agencies)
MindShare, MPG, Starcom: Excellence in strategic media thinking, leadership, innovation.
MindShare, Media Edge, Zenith: Excellence in leadership. 
MindShare, MPG, Carat: Excellence in innovation. 


MEMBER RESPONSE #5

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: OMD
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current media-planning AOR: OMD
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: We're dissatisfied

Current online planning: OMD - for banners, but not for paid search
Satisfaction with overall performance: We're dissatisfied

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the media buying account. Unsatisfactory to service the media planning account.
Turnover: Acceptable

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management:  Not noticeably involved in our business.


MEMBER RESPONSE #6

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: GSD&M Idea City (USA only)
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current media-planning AOR: GSD&M Idea City (USA only)
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current online planning: GSD&M Idea City (USA only)
Satisfaction with overall performance: High

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Somewhat involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (current or former agencies)
Strategic media thinking: GSD&M's Idea City, Universal McCann
Leadership:  GSD&M's Idea City, Universal McCann
Innovation:  GSD&M's Idea City


MEMBER RESPONSE #7

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: Media Kitchen, NY
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current media-planning AOR: Media Kitchen, NY
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current online planning: Media Kitchen, NY - with the exception of paid search, handled by Agency.com
Satisfaction with overall performance: High

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable.

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Somewhat involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (current or former agencies)
Strategic media thinking: Media Kitchen, MediaVest
Innovation: MediaVest


MEMBER RESPONSE #8

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: HSR Business-to-Business
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current media-planning AOR: HSR Business-to-Business
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current online planning: HSR Business-to-Business
Satisfaction with overall performance: High

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Unsatisfactory - agency had lot of turnover in 2008 but seem to be moving to appropriate levels in 2009.
Turnover: Unsatisfactory

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Somewhat involved - but just hired a VP Media.

KEY STRENGTHS (past or present agencies)
Strategic media thinking: RPA, McCann
Leadership: RPA, McCann
Innovation: RPA, McCann


MEMBER RESPONSE #9

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: Machado Garcia-Serra
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current media-planning AOR: Machado Garcia-Serra
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current online planning: Fuor Digital
Satisfaction with overall performance: Average

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Unacceptable

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Somewhat involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (past or present agencies)
Strategic media thinking: Cramer-Krasselt 


MEMBER RESPONSE #10

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: MediaVest
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current media-planning AOR: MediaVest
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: Average

Current online planning: Razorfish
Satisfaction with overall performance: High

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Satisfactory for media buying; unsatisfactory for media planning

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Somewhat involved in our business.


MEMBER RESPONSE #11

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: Starcom Worldwide
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current media-planning AOR: Starcom Worldwide
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current online planning: Starcom Worldwide; Performix, a unit of Starcom/Publicis, handles Search under Starcom
Satisfaction with overall performance: High

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable  

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Very involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (past or present agencies)
Strategic media thinking: Starcom and SMG Mediavest/Leo Burnett
Leadership: Starcom and SMG Mediavest/Leo Burnett
Innovation: Starcom and SMG Mediavest/Leo Burnett


MEMBER RESPONSE #12

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: RJ Palmer 
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current media-planning AOR: No planning AOR

Current online planning: MPG 
Satisfaction with overall performance: High

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Very involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (past or present agencies)
Strategic media thinking: RJ Palmer, Mindshare  
Innovation: MPG, Mindshare 


MEMBER RESPONSE #13

OVERALL PERFORMANCE
Current media-buying AOR: Zenith Optimedia 
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current media-planning AOR: MPG (a division of Havas) 
Satisfaction with agency's overall performance: High

Current online planning: Media Contacts (a division of Havas) 
Satisfaction with overall performance: Average

STAFFING
Staffing levels: Satisfactory to service the account.
Turnover: Acceptable

MANAGEMENT INVOLVEMENT
Senior management: Very involved in our business.

KEY STRENGTHS (past or present agencies)
Strategic media thinking: MPG 
Leadership: MPG 

Source

"Member Satisfaction with Media Agencies." ANA Advertising Financial Management Committee. January 2009.