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06 October 2021 | Nick Andrews, Business Development Director

How to write an agency brief (as part of a successful relationship)


As a client it can be frustrating and time consuming to go through several revisions of a proposal or project an agency is working on with you.

However, says Nick Andrews, Business Development Director at Sequel Group, agencies aren’t always the mind readers you’d like them to be.

In a new fact sheet written for IoIC members, Nick shares some insightful nuggets, from an agency perspective, on what constitutes a good brief and what you need to include for the best outcome.

“If you are briefing an agency on a project, the quality of their response will largely be based on the detail and information you give them,” he says. “The result of a better brief is that the right work is delivered faster.

“This isn’t about spoon feeding your agency,” says Nick. “It’s about being clear about your objective, your expectations and what outcomes you want from the project, whether it’s a campaign, an intranet or a one-off piece of communication.

“For an agency to understand where you’re aiming and what your business challenges are, you have to share the bigger picture.

“A good brief saves you time and effort further down the line, with an agency that understands the challenge, the environment and context for the project, and can therefore give you a more accurate proposal, quote or response – all leading to a smoother, successful delivery.”

This invaluable guide is a great starting point, helping you to focus on your message, your audience, your budget and your timescale.

“The important thing is to be as clear and comprehensive as you can at the outset,” says Nick.  “What are your key messages? What’s the single most important thing? What does success look like for the project? Are you happy for the agency to bring a fresh perspective and suggest additional ideas and solutions, or is it more set than that? If asking for a quote, what do you want to see back from an agency? Do you want a detailed quote and no visuals, or would you like to see some creative concepts along with the quote?

“Agencies are looking for a chance to shine, to convince you that they are the one to work with, so the more information you give them, the better they’ll be able to do that.”

Check out How to build a strong relationship with your agency and more of our how to guides here.

You can find the full fact sheet in the members area of the IoIC website by clicking here.