Prevention is better than the cure.

Recent events have brought to the forefront a raft of unfavourable media practices with significant consequences for both clients and agencies.  Unfortunately this is not a new concept nor limited to one agency.   It has been covered extensively in the trade press and also placed a spotlight on media auditors, client actions and media agency ethics. Holding an independent position in the market, we have been exposed to these practices and developed our own preventative measures to what we would call “the shell game”. That is, we know which shell to look under, and how to make sure unfavourable practices don’t happen in the first place! Prevention is always…

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Must read for all Marketers – Transparency behind Media Agencies

AdNews has released a great illustration of critical issues behind the lack of Media Agency transparency and accountability.      The Article “Ad Fraud uncovered and how it happens” (Pippa Chambers, AdNews, 10.2.15) provides a concise outline of potential fraudulent media activities. It’s not to say that all of these practices occur at every Media Agency, however it is a good summation for any marketer to be aware of when engaging a Media Agency.  Enth Degree has identified a number of these activities for our clients and developed contracts to ensure they cannot be implemented on our clients’ business. Enth Degree’s independence and attention to detail has enabled us to identify many of…

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Would you pay money for a product you haven’t recieved?

All marketers need to understand the implications of this unacceptable accounting practice and identify how much it is costing. The value identified through a simple invoice review can uncover tens of thousands of dollars of your media spend.    Media Suspense Account – What is it Unreconciled credits, the difference between what the client has paid and what the   media company has invoiced, are put into a ‘media suspense’ aka ‘media hold’ account. Newspapers, TV stations, outdoor companies don’t always get their invoicing 100% correct. Not all spots will appear as planned on a TV Network, A newspaper may place your ad correctly as booked on page…

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Must read for all Marketers – Anticipating and solving the problems of tomorrow

US online publication MediaPost recently provided a great article entitled “Media Agencies’ $25B Bounty For Change” (Tom Goodwin, MediaPost, 05.06.15) that outlines how the media industry is changing in light of new technology and consumer behaviour, and articulates why some media agencies are struggling to keep pace with the new dynamic marketplace. Is your agency able to anticipate and solve the problems of tomorrow? Enth Degree can help you ask the tough questions to ensure your suppliers are poised to deliver best in class service and provide ultimate ROI. Call us to find out more. Read the full MediaPost article here.

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How to turn “red tape” into Best Practice Management

How would you define “red tape”?   One description is the “bureaucratic practice of hair splitting or foot dragging, blamed by its practitioners on the system that forces them to follow prescribed procedures to the letter”. The term has been incorrectly used more recently when the industry discusses the ever increasing role of procurement in the selection of marketing services providers. It is becoming a common label to challenge the activities of procurement and compliance services as a barrier to achieving client objectives.  However, what is the risk of cutting the “red tape”? There are real cost implications in taking short cuts to due process. The involvement of…

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The Rise of the Production Agency

Decoupling production is not a new concept in marketing circles. Historically, the view was that clients could control cost, service levels and output by forming independent relationships with production partners, outside the control of their “master” or lead creative agency. This model allowed the lead agency to control strategy, creative platform and concept, while the production agency focused on the “churn and burn” pieces. It was the original “conscious uncoupling.”

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What Every Marketer Needs To Know About Demand Side Platforms

DSPs (Demand Side Platforms) are automated booking software systems for the purchase of online ad space/inventory.  They are automated campaign tracking processes. There are many positives:  access to a significant amount of centralised online inventory, managing multiple messages and using a wealth of consumer data (with a question mark over data ownership) – all to find your consumer in the digital haystack. But this black box comes with its own mysteries.  

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What hinders fair remuneration?

“We sourced the best price for you”… “We’ll provide you with a reconciliation of resources used”… “We’re losing money on this”… Sound familiar? These are some of the more common phrases we’ve heard from agency folk recently, via their clients. Designed to make marketers feel comfortable with the agency investment, they don’t always represent the truth. This is why consultants like us are called in for benchmarking, compliance, and value review services.

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Are Your Agencies Partners or Suppliers?

When asked what differentiates Enth Degree recently, the response required no delay…”unashamedly client focussed”. Someone needs to be, because it seems this simple business ethic is lost on many of marketers’ communication “suppliers”. While in industry circles it is more acceptable to refer to agencies – be they creative, media or other – as a client’s partner, this is a relationship based on trust and earned over time.

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Don’t monkey around when it comes to managing agency performance.

Performance reviews… Why do marketers implement and adhere to a performance review program for their staff? Obviously because it allows staff and managers to re-group, and ensure they’re on the right track in terms of KPI’s, marketing goals, and ultimately the business plan. Given the meaningfulness of such reviews, why is it that some marketers don’t see the inherent need to apply a similar review program with their marketing suppliers?

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