Wednesday, May 6, 2009

An argument for an agency retainer

I've got an idea. (Or, I "have" an idea, whichever is correct.)

It's something one of our clients could do. Easily. All of us here at N+H Central think it's a good idea. But it won't make us a nickle. Nothing. Zip. Nor will it cost the client very much. But it could be a benefit to them.

Point is, this idea is worth something.

But we're not on a retainer or anything with this client. And ideas are a big part of what we sell. So, should I tell them? Should I give it away? How much is the good will worth? They are a good client, but not such a big client that I could justify giving away something for nothing.

Personally, I think it makes sense to pay your agency some sort of retainer, so they will feel comfortable offering up (and taking the time to generate) those unsolicited ideas -- including those that may not make any money for the agency. The concept of agencies thinking up ideas so they can benefit from the production revenue is old hat. And no longer valid.

People tend to think those us in the ad business are whores. That may be. But I think I'd rather be a whore than a slut.

I guess I'd just rather not give it away.

(Postscript: I just came back four hours later and re-read the post above. Don't ask me why, because I don't know. I do that sometimes. But it strikes me that the "I don't want to just give it to them" attitude doesn't come across as very concerned about my client, does it? I'm thinking that perhaps it's that I'd rather not feel like the relationship is too one-side. After all, clients never just send us a little extra money for the good will. I don't know. Anyway, there it is.)

No comments: