If It Sounds Too Good to Be True, It Probably Is Too Good to Be True
Several 4A’s members have recently indicated that they have been approached by a consultant and board member representing the interests of company that is reported to be finalizing the acquisition of consumer brands and/or ramping up the planned introduction of new products for which the company needs the services of a marketing services agency.
Several members indicated that the consultant met with their agency and provided category reviews and competitive landscape updates to the agencies. It is reported that the consultant then convinced agencies (in Florida, Pennsylvania, and perhaps other locals) to pay him monthly retainer fees for consulting services with the promise that the agency would be assigned the business without a review and that the agency would begin work as soon as the acquisition/new product launch agreements were finalized by the marketer. Members report that the consultant indicated that launch authorization was anticipated shortly. After collecting fees for several months members indicated that the account never materialized.
Agencies should conduct thorough due diligence, check references, meet with client representatives before investing agency resources in opportunities that seem to good to be true.
EVP, Agency Management Services, 4A’s