A Guide To Auditing
Contract compliance auditing of media and advertising agencies has come a long way since Stephen Broderick, our Global CEO, was a pioneer back in 2000. Back then it was difficult to convince clients of the need to audit their marketing partners and those few clients faced many obstacles, none more so than the non-existence of signed client / agency contracts and the absence of any audit rights.
Thankfully, with the help of industry bodies such as ISBA, ANA & WFA and some leading clients, the industry has also come a long way with compliance audits of media agencies now a standard practice across most clients. However, there is still a long way to go, as the marketing landscape evolves, so does the financial trail and while media is generally the larger part of a client’s marketing spend and quite rightly the main focus, $Bs are spent on other marketing categories and clients have lots to gain by considering non-media agency partners for audit – after all, the culture of financial management at non-media agencies is very much the same as it is at media agencies where sadly, transparency is something clients have to demand and fight for, rather than rightfully being provided.
Media Marketing Compliance has made significant progress in how a compliance audit is undertaken and the time it takes to complete has drastically reduced. A common ask by clients is how much work do they have to commit to so the audit can get underway - the simple answer is “very little”.
Aside from choosing your audit partner, supplying them with the agency contract and advising the agency of the audit, you do not need to do anything further until the audit is completed and the results are being presented. In terms of the audit itself, by embracing and using techniques that Media Marketing Compliance has developed, we are able to cut the audit timeline by around 30% and reduce the time and resource needed by the agency to prepare and collate the data for the audit.
Our staff are senior ex-agency finance or client procurement staff, so we have operated on both sides of the aisle and our aim is to bring that knowledge to our clients and help them develop a trusting relationship with their agency partners – trust but verify.
Upon completion of the audit process, you will receive a detailed report inclusive of: the findings which are measured in terms of importance by a rating system, agency comments and recommended solutions and next steps – and of course, specific details of any monies and/or value that needs to be returned to you, demonstrating that the ROI is significantly greater than the fees paid for the audit itself.
The marketing categories we audit
Media Marketing Compliance can provide audit services across the entire spectrum of marketing categories and agency deliverables.
Click on the marketing categories below to learn more about the key aspects we aim to cover during the audit process.