Starting an agency back in the day was fun, but it was a lot of hard work and endless days. In the 70s we were the new kids on the block, however, we were actually a scarce commodity as the number of agencies in Ottawa at that time could be counted on one hand!
Ottawa was a civil service town back then, but there soon emerged a new category of client called “high tech”. High tech was popping up all over the city and most companies had a real need for a good marketing agency.
Enter Bytown Group.
Bytown Group started life primarily as a small design shop, but demand quickly dictated that we switch to a full service marketing agency.
Life in the days before computers was demanding and fast-paced (not that much has changed!), but in a completely different way than it is today. There was a need for promoting companies to their potential clients, but how did we get picked for these assignments in the first place? What made those companies PICK US?
There are many factors that come into play, but the size of the agency never truly factored into the end result. It all boiled down to the pointy end; the account executive who was talking directly to the client, and the solutions that the creative team (whether big or small) brought to the table.
That just about sums it up! Because if your client is happy with the solutions that you consistently supply, and you give them work that works, why would they ever want to leave you? And why would they care about how many people are on staff if they love the end result?
“So how many people does your agency have?” I wish I had a dime for every time I heard that in a pitch! Most of the time the answer should’ve been “You’re looking at them.” Both the account team and the design team typically consists of 1-2 people. The truth of the matter is, these are the people that are the backbone and pointy end of every agency. These are the people that you talk to on a daily basis and get the job done! So whether the agency has 4 or 40 people, your team should be capable of doing what they say they are going to do for you! (And usually for a better price if you’re talking to a smaller group.)
Pick the right team for you. Don’t get hung up on agency size.