Debunking the ‘Grass is Greener’ Myth in Agency Relationships


In today’s fast-paced business landscape, where growth, economic downturns, rising costs, intricate planning, quarterly reports, performance metrics, and optimization strategies dominate our thoughts, it’s no wonder that sleepless nights have become all too common for many professionals. The weight of these responsibilities can often lead us to question our agency relationships and wonder if the grass is greener on the other side.

Are you caught in the perpetual cycle of contemplating whether a new partner could better comprehend your needs, alleviate some mounting pressure, and bring fresh perspectives? In this article, we delve into the myth that switching agencies automatically guarantees a more understanding and supportive partnership. We explore the complexities surrounding agency relationships and shed light on the essential factors to consider before taking the leap. By debunking the notion that the grass is always greener elsewhere, we aim to equip you with valuable insights to make informed decisions and foster stronger connections with your current agency. So, let’s embark on this journey of discovery and uncover the truth behind agency relationships in our ever-evolving business landscape.

At Flock, we take pride in helping grow relationships. We encourage clients to make the most of an existing partnership before they consider a new one. Because under the growing pressure of delivering more with less, partners often look for the solution elsewhere than in their own organisation. Clients & agencies alike are often quick at blaming their partners and use agency appraisals to express their frustration. At Flock, we think that an agency appraisal is an opportunity for the partners to grow together, looking not only at how their partner could improve their performance but also asking themselves how they can enable better responses from their partners.

Our Agency Appraisal Tool provides clear insights that show how the quality of the relationship impacts on performance:   

  • The scores for the quality of the briefing & the overall client communication follow the same trend as the scores for the quality of the strategy and creative outputs. 
  • Overall high-performance scores go hand in hand with high Agency effectiveness scores. 
  • Performance scores for new relationships are usually quite low and they grow through effective action planning. Clients with strong action plans see score increases of about 14% wave on wave.  

A few take-outs? Maybe thinking about your company culture when you are under so much pressure feels like a luxury you can’t afford. But then again, is this a luxury you can afford to ignore? Will it be more effective to invest in identifying and aligning your vision, culture, and tools with a new partner, than to invest in your current partner? Is a score of 3.5* low, is the agency not performing if their scores are not between 4 and 5? Not at all, an average score of 3.5 is actually very good. Having solid benchmarks to compare your agency’s performance with the industry trends can help reframe your expectations and re-evaluate your perception about your current partner’s performance.  If you’re a client, will you be more understanding when your new agency will tell you that they need better briefs, and more transparent communication or that that they have issues with retaining talent?

If you are looking for a data-first approach to improving your organisation and building stronger, effective, future-proof relationships, get in touch today. Our agency appraisal was designed to bring partners together around a clear set of insights, to inspire transparent conversations, effective and trackable action plans. Our surveys were designed and are analysed by ex-client and agency leaders, who will identify the most effective insights, support them with clear qualitative feedback from your teams and suggest effective action plans. Our questions look at the past as much as they look at the future, enabling a positive long-term transformation. Let’s work together to bring your own garden the most inspiring this spring!  

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