Small is the New Big
Written by Emma Oyomba
In the world of advertising and marketing there are hundreds of firms, both big and small, that prospective clients can choose from. While some might think bigger is better, that is not always the case. In an industry that is all about creativity and innovation, a little can go a long way. Smaller, boutique agencies have seen a surge in interest from major CPG clients because they have what it takes to reinvigorate brands. The era of big for bigness sake has passed and has given way to the pursuit of exceptionalism. So why do boutique agencies fit the bill?
Creativity and passion drives a small agency. A boutique agency learns and grows by constantly delivering creative marketing solutions, designs and brand strategies. Small agencies thrive on being able to think outside of the box and to give clients something they cannot get elsewhere.
At smaller agencies, there isn’t a department but rather a few individuals who are specialized in what they do. But, because of the small size, everyone is forced to wear multiple hats and be sound in many areas. Small agencies are a dynamic team of talented individuals that are always trying to learn more and are always working on producing the best for their clients.
Simply put, boutique agencies are flexible. They need to leverage flexibility in order to be successful and to keep on growing. With a small agency, the staff is constantly trying to adjust and adapt their project management tactics to fit the needs for each client or project. In a small firm, people know that things can change at a moments notice. It is pivotal for a small agency to be flexible and adjust to change with ease.
Generally, individuals within boutique agencies are highly specialized at their job. But it doesn’t stop there; each individual needs to develop additional skills in order to assure the work for an account is successful. For example, an account manager may have to expand into brand strategy or content strategy. Individuals at a boutique firm are exposed to a broad range of things and often have to learn as they go but this ends up making for a more well-rounded staff and fresh ideas.
In business, accessibility is key. Boutique agencies offer more accessibility to their clients. Clients will find that they can be in direct contact with the founder, designers, marketing team, etc. There tends to be more direct access to an agency’s top talent as well. Clients can connect with the designer on their account and meet with him or her often.
Clients won’t have to worry about the people working on their account being reassigned to another project, moving offices, etc. They will find that the same team who pitched them ideas and strategies will be the same team that will be working on the account. This builds a good relationship between staff and clients because the team on the account isn’t constantly changing.
If a client says jump, a boutique agency jumps. If a client needs something urgently put together, the agency will drop everything and manage it. It’s about all hands being on deck and not going through all of the red tape that can often be found at larger corporate agencies.
Boutique agencies are now in high demand but they also don’t bite off more than they can chew. They choose projects that are the right fit for the agency. This works out for the client because small agencies know how much they can handle at one time so clients won’t get neglected.
Boutique agencies don’t have the massive overhead costs that big agencies have. Clients won’t have these large costs being passed on to them. This is great for them because boutique agencies can produce large agency quality work with a lower overhead because of their size.
The Bottom Line
Boutique agencies are able to provide a unique level of service to their clients that can’t be found at large agencies. Boutique agencies have big agency talent but bring a lot more to the table. With highly qualified creatives and an underdog mentality, smaller teams, and lower prices, boutique agencies are the way to go.
Emma Oyomba is Marketing Coordinator at Gammon Ragonesi Associates.