Choosing from one of the UK’s 25,000 creative agencies is a key decision for brands. In order to create an effective, enjoyable and productive partnership, brands and agencies need to align on ambitions and values, whilst bringing their own unique strengths to the table. As part of countless successful partnerships over the years, we know the things that brands need to look for when it comes to choosing a creative agency.

People who lead with strategy

At Rock Kitchen Harris, our strategy-led approach leads to confident, sound marketing initiatives. Don’t like marketing fads? Us neither. Agencies are successful when they look at the ‘why’ before the ‘what’. Especially in challenging economic climates, it's more important than ever to choose an agency that backs up their creativity with strategic thought.

A strong point of view

With a saturated agency market, a strong point of view is paramount when it comes to deciding who to invest in. Cutting through the noise is more important than ever, and having a strong point of view from an agency is the tool for doing just that. Brands want to work with agencies who are not afraid to push boundaries and who are willing to challenge the markets they’re working in. A strong point of view says “we’re here, and we know what we’re doing” with the results to prove it.

A strong client roster

When a brand is wondering whether they should invest in you, they’ll look to who has trusted you before and whether or not it’s paid off. As a business development manager, a huge part of my role is articulating who Rock Kitchen Harris has worked with in the past, as it allows brands to understand why they should invest in us.

A transparent way of working

If you’re trusting an agency with your money, your brand and your data, the last thing you want is to be kept in the dark about how it’s being used. We believe in working with complete transparency so that both agency and client know exactly what’s going on. We believe in access to real-time reporting, so our clients can have a complete, clear picture of what we’re doing and how it’s going. Of course, not every campaign can be a runaway success, but we’ll always show all the data so that we can learn, grow, and create even better work next time.

Good people

All of the above is arguably futile if the people behind great ideas are not genuine, good people. A working relationship is going to be far more enjoyable and worth the investment if those who are doing the work are people worth investing in. As brands and agencies establish their relationship and understand each other’s objectives, good communication skills, confidence, and empathy are going to be essential qualities.

Remember: not every agency will be the right fit

It’s also important to remember that not every agency will be the right fit for your brand, but it’s crucial that the agency you choose functions as an extension of your team. Working this way makes things easier, and more natural, and it can also help to strengthen the relationships between the people who work together.


Every brand will have its own priorities when it comes to finding a new partner agency. Before you start auditioning potential partners, it’s important to have your priorities in order, rather than just going for the agency with the shiniest branding. With the right selection process, you’ll find an agency that can offer support to amplify your expertise whilst using their own skills to help your brand find success.

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