Brand teams struggle with an agency production group

A global advertiser asked recently us to review and make recommendations on production workflow issues with an agency (holding company) production group scenario.

The advertiser had an agreement to default to the agency holding company’s production group. When we took a look at the process structure they were following it was easy to see where some of the issues were coming from.

The production group was decoupled from the agency, this was a selling point. There were many potential issues that flowed from that structure.

1.       The project’s producer did her best but seemingly worked for the production group first and foremost, second in line was the client brand team and third was the agency creative team.

2.       The brand team’s relationship with the agency teams had become fraught as many of the production issues were being negotiated in their full view and with their participation.

3.       The production group controlled and minimized the relationship between brands teams and their production consultants. This was the first time I have seen this.

The production consultancy was engaged, but the workflow, sold and managed by the production team, had the consultant operating in a very narrow window of responsibility -- only reviewing costs. The consultants were not present the process from start to finish, which is our preference.

The client ultimately decided to hire an in-house executive producer to ensure that brand's concerns and expectations were met.

We were left scratching our heads with that decision because having spent careers as producers, project and production managers, we normally cover that role. C'est la vie.