by Alistair Haarhoff

Client satisfaction guaranteed

The merits of working with a design specialist

Understanding the level of design creativity in your agency is guaranteed to create satisfaction with your clients
Everyone, regardless of age, is a consumer. We seek out the unique, coupled with good value. 

Consumers typically rush to purchase products when dealing directly with the smaller producer of ‘one of a kind’ items, at a reasonable price, as opposed to mass-produced options from larger general manufacturers. 

Now let’s consider the specialist design agency in the same light as the talented small producer scenario.
Being creative determines the livelihood of many individuals. It’s essential for creatives to know what their specialty is. When a design agency identifies its creative strengths, this ultimately leads to a best outcome for clients.

Although pursuing multiple interests and developing a range of skills does contribute to a creative team’s experience, I should add that it won’t, however, necessarily determine their success.
Graphic artists, web developers, brand designers and copy editors all fall under the umbrella of the discipline of ‘design’. 

Each individual specialises in some aspect of the total product. Although a single person would be able to do the job of two, in this day and age such efforts will rarely match the quality of work done by dedicated specialists.
Specialists are able to provide their clients with unbiased advice. They are removed from the red tape associated with general agencies. 

Armed with focused experience and cutting edge knowledge, specialised agencies provide their clients with invaluable expertise and can consequently cater exactly to their needs.
The war between the generalist and specialist is ever present, especially with current cost cutting. Clients want the same results at half the price and in a moment of poor judgment, being promised full service and a total return on investment, they risk jeopardising quality for quantity. 

At what cost? Seen sensibly, it would be better to assemble a team of diverse specialists rather than try to find all of their talents in one person.
Yet becoming a specialist or expert is not merely a label. To be respected as the specialist, the discipline must truly be mastered. Most people don’t make it to that level of super competence because they desire instant success, thinking (incorrectly) that they can forfeit the long hours required to learn and master a trade.
The experience, level of understanding and knowledge found in a specialised agency provides clients with the reassurance that they are in the best hands. The opposite is reflected when dealing with a general agency. 

Designers know that the devil is in the detail. Dividing attention with regard to different activities translates into less time for devoting to learning the intricacies of clients’ brands, resulting in a disconnect or lack of understanding of the brand and its needs.
All business owners realise that being close to one’s client is crucial to the success of the campaign. Specialist agencies are experienced in a particular field, liaising directly with clients and offering services that will specifically and beneficially impact their client’s brand.  

This targeted approach allows for the delivery of effective results on a tactical level, eliminating the likelihood of errors and miscommunication between client and supplier.
Some argue that specialists have no back-up or ‘filler’ services to pick up slack when the demand for specialist assignments dries up, compromising regular income and the ability to expand business. 

However, specialists handle their clients with more than just a lick and a promise. Their work speaks for itself. This prestige alone ensures that business will be regular. Clients know what results may be expected. 

With the track record of in-depth expertise and the demonstrated ability to deliver, why would clients wish to switch loyalty to another agency? Specialists even bring other outsourced specialists on board, where necessary, in order to offer clients a collaborative variety of super skilled services with a specialised twist. 
Today’s economic climate is breeding increasingly stiff competition and many agencies are finding it difficult to maintain their competitive edge. That’s precisely what distinguishes a leading agency and sets it apart from its competitors – its specialist focus on niche markets in order to serve clients better. 

And savvy clients never seek the services of a generalist if they want specialised results.
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Issue 89


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