We’ve been beavering away here at AAR Towers to deliver our biennial research projects. This summer promises a bumper crop of reports and insights!

First off, we’ve been looking into what has become our most common brief from brands over the last 18 months – do I have the right agency model? We’ve interviewed leading brand marketers, procurement professionals and agencies to hear first-hand their thoughts on what’s driving this trend. Why are brands looking at their agency model? What are they learning through the process of evaluating and changing their agency model? What models are proving most popular and why?

INNOVATION

Next up, a report on Corporate Innovation. How are brands working with new types of partners, beyond traditional agencies, to help drive their corporate innovation needs? What can we learn from the brands forging the way by working with a new breed of entrepreneurial businesses from start-ups to new style innovation consultancies. How are brands partnering to help them develop and explore new business models, create products and services with tech start-ups to stay relevant and to imbed innovation culture within their organisations?

TRUST AND GOODWILL

We’ve also undertaken a piece of qualitative research with brand owners and agency leaders exploring the concepts of Trust and Goodwill in client:agency relationships. Is this earned over time or is this a default position at the start of a relationship which slowly diminishes? Do trust and expectation levels vary depending on the functional or inspirational role of the agency? Is trust a virtual contract? How is it regained once lost?

ACCOUNT MANAGEMENT

And last but not least, we’ve asked questions of marketers and agency leaders around the future of account management. Is the function still needed or on the road to extinction? How do they think it needs to change? What impact will those changes have on both clients and agencies? Is the label the wrong one in today’s world? What qualities make a great account director from a client’s perspective?

We’ll be sharing the findings of all of our research projects with you across the summer months.