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How to Get the Best Deal from an Agency

Competitive Media Quotes

In today's challenging economic climate, discretionary spending is on the decline. With sales down, marketing budgets often take a hit. Yet, advertising remains crucial for maintaining business momentum. Sound familiar?

You review your current sales and inventory, concluding that a targeted campaign is essential to regaining your traction. Pressed for time, you delegate the task of gathering media costs to your assistant, expecting quick, competitive estimates.

But is this the best approach? The short answer is no. Let’s explore why.

Understanding the Media Landscape

While numerous media agencies are available, the actual number of media outlets/ companies is limited. Imagine you want to launch a Video on Demand campaign, targeting consumers during their favourite shows. The options? Major networks like Channel 7, 9, 10, and SBS, alongside Foxtel. You can purchase either a single network deal or opt for programmatic buying.

Sending out multiple quote requests might seem wise, but all media agencies ultimately approach the same outlets. This leads to the biggest issue for business.

The Problem with Multiple Quotes

When media outlets detect multiple inquiries, they provide standard planning rates instead of deals or discounts. This puts all agencies on an equal footing, potentially resulting in estimates that fall short, leading to delivery gaps and suboptimal campaign outcomes.

Media companies avoid undercutting themselves. Thus, you might end up paying more for your campaign than if you had worked with one or two agencies with strong relationships and substantial buying power.

The Solution

1. Research Agencies: Look for an agency that aligns with your brand's values and tone. A quick phone conversation can reveal whether their approach instils confidence and comfort.

2. Ask About Distress Deals: Some agencies specialise in distress deals, offering discounted rates for cancelled or leftover inventory. Others integrate these deals strategically into existing campaigns. Ensure your chosen agency explains its approach clearly.

3. Provide a Clear Brief: An accurate and concise media brief is essential. Outline your challenges and objectives, suggesting potential media channels but allowing the agency to propose the best solutions. Their expertise often results in well-rationalized recommendations.

4. Build Long-Term Relationships: Choosing an agency partner is an investment. Long-term relationships yield better deals, honesty, and strategic direction. Clients stay with agencies not just for discounts but for the trust and guidance they provide.


By following these steps, you’re more likely to find the right agency and achieve the best results for your campaign. With over 20 years of experience, MPA excels in securing distress deals and maintaining strong media relationships. Ready to learn more? Contact the experts at MPA today.

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About the author

Alastair Noble

Alastair has a long and diverse background in media, with 25 years Australian, US & UK experience spanning Advertising Media & Management, Journalism, Public Relations and end to-end business leadership.

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