If you know SCORE then you may have a perception of retired grey tops with some outdated business acumen. Well after a few months of personal coaching I can tell you it’s anything but. In fact the Score Orange County, CA chapter has amazing members.

This week I attended a session presented by Tom Patty (Tom was part owner and manager of a highly successful ad agency before selling it – some of his best work includes being integral in the Apple 1984 Super Bowl TV advert). All of the presentation was fantastic – more on that another time.

He presented such a clear and concise picture of agency (PR, but could be any retainer based service industry) workings in regards to the client purchasing process that I wanted to share. Tom’s too modest, but I’ll call it the Patty Hierarchy of Needs.

1 – Client fires exiting agency (or is new out of the blocks and didn’t have one)
2 – Searches for the right agency
3 – Shortlist a handful of hopefuls
4 – Pitch (agency side just love this part!)
5 – Account is awarded
6 – LOVE has to be transmitted

Inevitably, the account is lost and the process continues it’s loop. The real question, as Patty puts it, is how long the LOVE can continue.

There are plenty of great examples of agencies hanging onto accounts for multiple years. At NettResults we have accounts for eight plus years, but what is the success of longevity?

For me that question is simply answered. The agency has to ONLY do two things well, consistently month on month:
1 – deliver measurable results with a positive ROI
2 – a positive, mutually respectful personal relationship with the client

I’ve seen many accounts that have one or the other, but not both, and these are not the ones that survive. The few that have both gain longevity.

Continue the LOVE.