Its been almost four years in advertising for me, across two distinctly different workplaces (A Positive/ Euro RSCG and Ogilvy & Mather) and only one thing that hasn’t changed aside from appetite for advertising is, Clients. They are the cattle we feed on, yet also the masters we diligently serve… they come in all shapes and sizes… and “shades of grey” carries the true connotations of their nature (since they are never all white good or all black bad).
I must admit I’ve always been bestowed with some of the finest clients to manage and nicest client contacts to deal with; but as the saying goes “even the nicest of roses has thorns”, it stands true for clients too. Many a times, I have been faced with the great dilemma of deciding “what makes the perfect client?”. We all must have our own answers… and I wanna know your views on that!!!
It was NEITHER a survey, NOR any high-thought hypothetical bullshit, but just a random thought of seeing how we see this on a MACRO level. Given below are some exerts from what some of the nearest and dearest colleagues/friends feel about the issues.
According to Emran, the gentle giant who is also a hot-shot adman working at Asiatic MCL with prior experience at A Positive and Bitopi Advertising, “At the end of the day its a love and hate relationship, you can’t leave them, can’t live without them! for me a good client is whose mentality matches with the agency and after a long hard day(on most days…the nights as well!) at work….you can share a toast of Jack Daniels with the guys, learn from the mistakes, cheer for the good work, smile and look ahead to do some better work.”
Pretty cinematic, huh! But that’s what makes us unique, cause its advertising!!!
I believe the young guns are the BIG GUNS of the future, since all who bothered to fill in are the people who are taking it on, leading from the front… yet they are young!!! Rintu, a truckload of passion and dedication sauced up with a creative mind… that’s what defines him the best 🙂 In his own words, the perfect client has the following attributes – “Sometimes we spend more time with our client rather than our girlfriends.. in the client-agency relationship what is important to me is loyalty and understanding.. just like any other typical personal relationship ;).. no matter what, we will fight, we will have different opinions and perspectives.. but end of the day, we need to respect each other for what we are and what we know! client needs to have trust and faith on the agency and of-course agency needs to earn that..” Simple and universal words, but rarely do we see them in action. Just as oil and water never mix together, it seems… the elusive search for a perfect client is harder than what it is thought to be.
I will conclude this rather small piece quoting the words of a creative soul. The other two being accounts person, have a different take on the whole scenario… and me being the same, couldn’t possibly add nothing substantial to what they had said either. Luckily enough, a long time friend, a linguist and most importantly a copywriter, Tasnuva had a lot to say on this. Lets see what she exactly had in mind, ” If I start speaking about this matter, I don’t think when I’ll stop….first of all, you can not simply be all in one, the problem with the clients in Bangladesh is that they tend to be creative and thus interferes in your work. We all have our own unique ideas that we like to implement. Now in this agency-client relationship I believe that we all have our own responsibilities that we are well aware of. Problem arises when you’re given the platform of doubt of your responsibilities. Worst part is that not all of us have the guts Sabih. we simply do not want to lose our clients and that’s why no matter how bullshit the idea is, you’ll just agree with the client so that you can hold on to the account as well as make them happy…. I believe I have been quite straight-forward.”
And judging she wasn’t still content with all that, the following verses were added later on, “By the way, I forgot to add, the perfect client would be someone who knows what the agency is doing, who knows how to respect the agency people and someone who is totally not a d**khead…”
From some very optimistic views to a rather harsh criticism, I was glad to get a 360* overview on this. I know this isnot even close to being sufficient enough to take a call, but a judgmental soul like mine, can’t help but drawing a conclusion. And I would put my final words, in a very familiar phrase… “Birth, Death and Marriage are in God’s hands” and some even add career to it (ideally to make it more cynical)… but let me take the honor of introducing an adman version of this rather universal phrase as,”Birth, Death, Marriage, Career and Client are all in God’s hands”.
I would like to convey my utmost gratitude to all those who took some time off their busy schedules to answer to my rather stupid and untimely query… Hang on! this isn’t the last of my random trivia 😉