With the presence of media in nearly every element of our daily lives, there are more and more opportunities for artists and sync licenses than ever. One of the most sought-after and high profile places to land a sync deal is in advertising.
What Do Digital Advertising Agencies Do?
Advertising agencies are the masterminds behind some of the most effective marketing firms in contemporary culture. They are made up of a series of teams who together plan, strategise, produce and distribute advertising campaigns.
These campaigns can be produced for radio, TV, the internet, social media marketing, magazines, or usually a combination of them all. Advertising and marketing agency services can extend beyond simply creating adverts but also transpiring to marketing strategies and promotion. Advertising agencies are generally independent companies to their clients and can be hired by any sort of industry.
These days, we’re constantly presented with advertising material, so much so that it can all become a blur. Campaigns that are unusual or cutting edge, therefore, stand out from the rest and generally generate a lot of public discussion.
Successful advertising agencies are always looking for innovative ways to advertise. Advertising should be culturally relevant to the times and audience appropriate. Advertising can help channel a brand’s identity and inform brand awareness.
We live in a world of countless manufacturers and products that basically do the same thing, but what makes you buy into their product? The tech? The design? Or advertising? Apple is an example of effective marketing and advertising, as they dominate the mobile phone industry.
Even though iPhones cost far more than they are worth and are not the highest spec items on the market, they are considered the most fashionable. Everything about Apple has been carefully designed to reflect their sleek marketing; from the store designs, the packaging and their operating systems.
That’s why people camp outside of their stores a week prior to new product releases, they want to be the first person to have the new iPhone. Apple spent $1.8 billion on their advertising in 2015, but have since mysteriously not revealed their advertising budgets to the public.
How Do Advertising Agencies Find Work?
Advertising firms have to fight for the chance to win contracts and work by their clients. Budgets for advertising can be huge, so the client wants to know they are making the right choice with who they employ. Certain contracts are desirable for agencies to secure as successful campaigns for high profile clients can attract more business for the agency focuses.
Advertising agencies, or creative agencies as they are also known, have to present pitches to potential clients in order to win a contract. The client will see numerous pitches from rival advertisers and select the team they have the most faith in by the end of this process. Once an agency has won a contract, then they can begin planning the campaign.
The advertising industry generally operates on a 15% operations charge. This means that of an advertising budget of £1 million, 15% of that fee will be paid to the advertisers for their services.
What Are The Different Roles In A Creative Advertising Agency?
An advertising agency is generally comprised of a number of different teams that collectively will work together to execute the campaign. These teams are:
Account executives or managers are the clients go-to at the advertising company. The account executives will correspond with them on projects and receive the creative briefs. It is essential the account services team produce a clear and strong creative brief from the client.
This team is run by a Creative Director who oversees the development process. This team is responsible for developing the creative content for the campaign, ensuring it’s quality and poignancy. The creative team is made up of designers, artists, copywriters and web designers, as well as the directors that manage the department.
This is where the creative team’s ideas become a reality, the production team essentially creates the campaign. The creative team will be consulted by the production team throughout the creative process to establish what is possible and what is not.
Without this department, the carefully created advertising campaigns would have nowhere to be shown. The media buyers secure advertising space, time and airplay in prime locations to execute the desired reach of the campaign. This can be anywhere you can place an advert, such as TV, radio, billboards, magazines, online, social media, sports games and more. The budget for the campaign must include the cost of buying the media space.
Music In Advertising
Music can play a key role in shaping a brand’s identity; the genre and artist can say a lot about the direction and essence of a brand. It can make or break an advertisement and is a major consideration of advertising agencies.
When looking for music for their campaigns, the agency must consider who is the target audience and determine what genre or style of music is of interest to them in that contemporary market. They will then source potential tracks from music licensing companies or music publishers to obtain a sync license for the use of the track.
Campaigns that are played on TV or online can be huge exposure and revenue sources for artists. Some agencies will secure well-known artists and pay heavily for the license to sync their tracks.
The fee for syncing a popular song can start at around $75,000 and reach up to $200,000 in the US for up a period of annual usage. The other and far cheaper option is to sync tracks by emerging artists on the cusp of ‘making it’ as it presents the company as in touch with the next big thing.
Usually, it’s record labels that push for their artists to land these kinds of placements with reputable brands as it can be a great source of music promotion.
Licensing Your Music For Advertising
A sync license for an advertising campaign will work pretty much the same as a sync deal for TV or a film. This arrangement may be worked out between the advertising agency and your publisher if you have one. If not, you will discuss it directly with the advertisers. If you are an independent artist operating without a publisher, pay a lawyer for their time to read through any sync licensing deal before you sign it to avoid signing a licensing agreement that does not work in your favour.
Not only will advertisers pay you a sync licensing fee, but if the advert your music is featured in is broadcast on TV, on the radio, or anywhere else that counts as ‘public viewing’, then you’ll also be owed royalties. The royalties you earn through the viewing of the campaign will be paid to you through your PRO. If the advertisement is a long-running one, you could see royalty checks for quite a while. Depending on the success of the advert, the ad agency could come back to you to ask for more music to further the campaign.
Pitching To Commercial Advertising Companies
Generally speaking, if you have a music publisher they will seek out sync licensing deals and submit music on your behalf. If you are with a publisher there’s nothing stopping you from doing this too, but your publisher may have a better chance of success.
When pitching your music to marketing and advertising companies, first of all, find out who has the deciding vote on music selections within their team. Go on their company website and see if their team page lists a music director, this is the person you need to pitch to.
Next, send them sync-ready tracks, never send them unfinished demos. It’s not professional and it won’t work. The agency doesn’t have time to wait for you to get back in the studio, play around with the track and rerecord it. They have tight turn arounds and want a track they can use immediately.
Include all the relevant metadata in your submission and include contact details for everyone involved. You should input the names of all the rights holders in your song’s metadata to allow the recipient to easily understand who owns what. Save them all the time and effort you can, it’ll take you two minutes that the advertiser might not have that day to spend finding your phone number.
Send them links to streaming sights or your Soundcloud account, don’t send them MP3 files to download. The advertiser does not want to sit and wait for your tracks to download; streaming is quick, easy and convenient.
Successful Advertising Syncs
The John Lewis Christmas advert has become a popular and widely speculated event of the Christmas season, the music selection playing accounting for a large part of the speculation. The adverts now cost John Lewis around £7 million each year, although the full service marketing team won’t reveal the exact number.
One of the most memorable and successful song choices was Gabrielle Aplin’s 2012 cover of Frankie Goes To Hollywood ‘The Power Of Love’. Aplin had just been signed to Parlophone Records to record her debut album, after a successful Youtube career covering famous pop songs. Her version of The Power Of Love earned her a UK number one and her debut album reached number two in the UK Album Chart.
If you’re an artist interested in sync licensing opportunities, find out what Music Gateway can do for you.
Q1. What services does an advertising agency offer?
A full-service advertising agency offers a comprehensive range of services that address both the traditional and digital marketing aspects of a business.
- Advertising Campaigns
- Strategic Business Planning
- Television Advertising
- Social Media Online Management
- Content Creation & Design
- Website Development & IT Services
- Broadcast Radio Advertising& Commercials
- SEO (search engine optimisation)
Q2. How does an advertising agency work?
Advertising agencies secure clients through sales leads, word of mouth and through their website and advertising. Larger brands and clients normally approach several agents and ask them to pitch for the business, which can include campaign ideas and creative content.
A pitch is like an audition, which when received by the client they will review and cherry pick the best one that matches their goals and the brief details and of course the cost is a consideration. Depending on the client brief and the type of agency approached, will dictate the scope of work (SOW) required, which can be far and wide.
You will find ad agencies in most major cities but especially in New York City, London, Paris & Berlin.
Q3. What is the role of an advertising agency?
The primary role of advertising agencies is to help a company or business grow and achieve their goals. Successful planning and strategy are essential in creating specific advertising campaigns for the clients and then placing these advertisements across a variety of media channels based on the brands’ customer target audience and demographics. Some agencies provide specialist services, but most will provide a full range of advertising, public relations (PR), market research, strategic promotion and other related marketing support and advice.
Q4. How much does an advertising agency charge?
Advertising agencies make money by charging clients on either an hourly fee or weekly / monthly retainer for their services. This is normally calculated and estimated in a quote based on the clients’ needs first and foremost.
Addition fees can be leveraged through product mark up when outsourcing bulk orders for merchandise, printing, photography, video production, and other professional services. Some larger agencies will have in-house services, but most will outsource freelancers campaign by campaign.
Q5. What are the different types of advertising agencies?
Here’s a list of the top 10 most common types of advertising agencies, marketing agencies and creative agencies.
- Traditional Allround Advertising Agency
- Branding Agency
- Design Specialist Agency
- TV & Media Buying Agency Service
- Product Promotional Agency
- Public Relations Agency (PR Agent)
- Marketing Specific Agency
- Digital Marketing Agency (Online Focus)
Some agencies are specialist in specific business sectors and industries and can be location dependent or worldwide.
Q6. How do I start an advertising company?
How to start your own Advertising Agency.
- Stay in tune with the market and advertising trends
- Create your own brand identity and complimentary business plan
- Join the advertising industry trade associations
- Seek professional advice where you lack knowledge
- Think about and target clients for your advertising agency (how do you want to work with and why)
- Build a client database through the use of a CRM software tool
- Create a launch plan and something that can go viral
- Look at what the competition is doing and do the opposite.
Q7. How do I get a job in an advertising agency?
Here are some suggestions on how best to get a job within an established advertising agency.
- Get an internship as a way into the advertising industry. Most students will be familiar with the fact that a degree in Advertising, Marketing and or Business will help their application
- Search and register with specialist job website such as Indeed, then apply for open positions.
- Gain experience through freelancing for clients, building your own portfolio of work
- Network, Network and then do some more networking as it’s all about personal relationships
Q8. How do advertising agencies get clients?
- Ask for client referrals is top of the list
- Build relationships with partner agencies that may require the support or campaign help
- Subscribe to campaign magazine for industry knowledge and client leads
- Keep in touch with existing clients for repeat business
- Be very pro-active in your networking
- Run your own brand campaign and generate leads
- Use your blog as a way to engage with your target clients, providing professional guidance and advice.
- Create an eBook as a free giveaway in return for their email (leads)
Q9. How do you manage an advertising agency?
How best do you manage an Advertising Agency
- Create a strong mission statement
- Focus on delivering client satisfaction
- Train and develop your employees’ skills continuously
- Recruit the very best new talent
- Recruiting young graduates will provide fresh perspectives on the advertising industry
- Consider using specialist freelancer workers for campaigns
- Attend trade conferences and stay informed about the advertising industry
- Stick to budget guidelines and timeframes to deliver best results
Q10. What does a creative do in advertising?
Creatives, such as Creative directors are the people in the advertising agency that create most of the campaign ideas. They have an eye and ear for what works in advertising and marketing a brand.
They are quick thinkers, relying on gut instinct with that may work with the designers, artists, copywriters, sales teams with the aim of creating a vision for the products sold. Depending on the size of the team, Creative directors may delegate the advertising plan and organisational tasks, and prefer to oversee the whole creative process from start to finish, giving guidance to the others creatives working on the campaign.