When it’s time to look beyond your internal resources.
Over the past seven years of NAMM attendance, I’ve been really excited about what music brands are bringing to the marketplace. So many talented builders and designers are putting out supremely innovative, cool and inspiring products, the kind of products that push me and many others to take a fresh look at the sounds we’re producing. The post-NAMM bummer follows shortly thereafter, though: the realization that many of these awesome brands will either fall off the radar or be defunct in just a few short years.
Having a solid product is no guarantee of success, and, as informed as players are nowadays, the odds of them finding out about your brand’s offerings on their own are pretty bleak. That’s when it’s critical for brands on the cusp of breaking out to consider partnering with an ad agency.
You’re probably saying, “I’ve got an internal team that develops all of my marketing materials. I don’t need any help.” You may be right, but depending on how you’re allocating your resources internally, you may find it makes more sense than you thought.
Here are just a few ways you can take your marketing efforts to the next level by partnering with an ad agency.
Experts Create Excellence
If you’re one of the emerging brands that have weathered the first few tough years in the MI marketplace, odds are pretty good that you are developing and manufacturing some pretty solid gear. This is due in large part to your expertise and focus. It’s what lets you continue to push the boundaries of development.
Bringing in an agency to lead the charge in communicating your product offerings allows you to focus on your core discipline, while complex and time-consuming efforts such as branding, positioning, creative development and media planning can be effectively executed by a focused and highly specialized team of marketing experts. A powerhouse product lineup combined with a thoughtful communications strategy can help you overcome the hurdle of differentiating your brand and staging your business for the next level of success.
Yes, you’re reading that right. Finding a good balance between your internal capabilities and those of an agency can yield big savings in the long run. Take media spend, for example. Imagine how many times you’ve tested different vehicles without seeing results. That kind of spending can add up quickly. A dedicated agency media planner can not only evaluate and recommend the most effective use of your dollars, but also leverage existing relationships and volume contracts with player media to get you the biggest bang for your buck.
Striking a balance between internal resources and agency resources leads to savings as well. Developing a skilled internal staff that covers all disciplines is a costly proposition, especially when you get into strategic planning and campaign level planning. Knowing when and how to use an agency can help you stay lean yet effective. Plus, it’s a lot easier to quickly scale an agency than an internal team.
Internal marketing staff, like sales, R&D and manufacturing, are intimately close to the brand. By virtue of being so close, it’s easy to form some biased perspectives of your brand—the kinds of bias that might limit your potential. Ad agencies, on the other hand, exist to identify and pursue market opportunities that you may have missed. A smart agency can quickly learn your business from the inside out, devising new ways to reach and expand your player audience base.
The challenge of breaking through the cluttered and competitive music manufacturing market is a formidable one. Understanding how to supplement your internal efforts with the expertise of an agency can give you a head start on building your brand for the future.