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WHAT'S YOUR BUDGET?
This is the question we ask our clients which always triggers a palpable frog in their throat. In American society, we are generally taught not to talk about religion, politics or money. That being said, when your agency asks you, “What’s your budget” they are doing so for a few reasons.
First, of course, the agency wants to see what potential strategy and tactics are available to utilize. It does no good to craft a full annual strategy and executable tactics based on a budget that is six figures when the real budget is closer to $10,000 or $20,000.
Secondly, they are actually trying to save you money. If a purchase of ads, materials, resources, etc. can be made, or at least leveraged all at once, often a discount is offered by the vendor based upon the “promise” of future business.
Third, they are being budget conscious of both what you have and what you are going to be billed by the agency. The simple business model of an agency is a billable hour. If the marketing firm crafts a marketing plan based on an inaccurate budget, what you end up with is a useless document and time billed which could have been used in a better manner.
Finally, they are trying to meet your expectations. Agencies want to do a great job and be your partner. The barriers to achieving success often center around the lack of transparency between the client and agency. They both must communicate their expectations, the budget provided and the status of the agreed upon strategy and tactics to find success.