We don’t want your retainer

Should you pay your marketing agency retainers?

Yes, we’re a marketing agency.

And yes, we really did just say that.

We’re not quite the self-flagellating sadists that might make us sound like, we just like to avoid the easy life. The ‘comfort zone’ really isn’t where we want to be. It’s not fertile ground for standout, gutsy, performance-driven marketing campaigns.

Don’t get us wrong, we love our clients. And we love all of our long-standing, deadline-hardened relationships with them, but we never want to lose that ‘zing’ that you get at the start of any good relationship.

We approach every campaign like we would a second or third date (not a first date. Let’s be honest, first dates are just bloody awkward).

We spend time getting under your skin, really listening to what makes you tick. We try to impress you, thinking up novel and exciting date ideas. The aim is to make you feel special, leaving the date with a spine tingling urge to arrange the next one. Maybe tomorrow night? The day after? When are you next free goddamit?!

What we really like to avoid is slipping into a comfortable rhythm of bi-nightly phone calls and flannel pyjamas. The ‘comfort zone’.

Where you don’t bother communicating anymore because you (think you) already know what they’re going to say. You start taking one another for granted, not minding if you turn up an hour late, miss an anniversary or neglect to return a call. You’re not expected to be on top form all of the time. It’s totally fine to chomp your way through a 2kg bar of Dairy Milk and belch in front of them. Things aren’t ‘bad’, but they’ve become habit.

And habit isn’t helpful when it comes to creative campaign planning. Because if you’re doing things by habit, you’re not really listening, not really absorbing, not really reacting, not really trying to ignite that all-important spark in your audience.

And a marketing campaign that fails to do this is not one to be proud of.

So no, thanks, but no thanks. We don’t want your retainer.

Because we know we’ll keep you anyway. At the risk of sounding like the arrogant jerk that you would march out of a date with after 5 minutes, we know you’ll come back for more. Because together, we make wonderful and exciting things happen. Just you wait and see.

So er, fancy that drink sometime?