Like any good relationship, the client-agency link takes work! There are several key agency actions that, when combined, can help produce both a satisfied client AND robust sales at retail.

Take the time to understand the real need at retail. Listen purposefully to your client. Rather than entering a client meeting with a preconceived solution lined up and ready to go, start with a blank mental slate and really listen. Being heard means something. Whether in a personal or professional context, it helps establish the emotional rapport essential to building a long-term partnership. The sooner you understand the true scope of the client’s retail needs, the better equipped you’ll be to determine the point of intersection between your agency and those needs.

Don’t be discouraged by lack of initial direction from the client. If there’s one phrase agency representatives dread to hear, it’s “I’ll know it when I see it.” The client knows they have a need for some kind of physical presence at retail, but if they knew exactly what they wanted, chances are they wouldn’t be reaching out to an agency. We’re their experts! We show the value of our partnership in guiding them to a solution that will work for them, even if that means helping them to define the problem in the first place, before moving on to talk of potential solutions.

Know your process well. Every agency has a particular workflow. During the initial phases of a joint project, it can be frustrating to dialogue with a client who wants to “leapfrog” certain necessary steps to sync the agency’s schedule with their own, get answers or commitments sooner than they can be provided, or simply speed up the process. Help bridge the gap! Once of the scope of the initiative is understood, be crystal clear about the sequence of steps that need to be taken by both sides, and when answers and deliverables will be due. Having a firm handle on your agency’s workflow fosters a sense of confidence in conversations with the client.

Internalizing these principles and making use of them when dialoguing with the client will place your budding partnership on solid footing, helping establish you as a trusted resource for their retail needs. Here at Spectas, we keep these guidelines in mind throughout each interaction with our valued clients! Doing so allows us to create solutions for retail activation to maximize brand visibility, inspire shopper connections, and drive sales of your product.

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