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Questions & Answers

We do understand that auditing can be an emotive issue and it throws up as many questions as it does answers, so we have put together a simple guide to follow and answer some questions that we think both experienced clients and newer clients would ask:


Why would you want to audit your marketing agency partners?

  • Clients spend significant time and money putting contracts in place, so it is good business practice to ensure that it is being adhered to by both the agency and the client

  • Most clients’ corporate governance policies will insist that vendors handling such large spends as those of marketing agencies are audited on a regular basis

  • Provides client and agency an opportunity and forum to discuss issues that may have been lingering for a while

  • An audit generates trust in the relationship

  • Today’s media & marketing landscape is based on volume and an audit will ensure that you, the client, are also benefiting from the commercial deals available to agency buying groups from the multitude of media & BTL suppliers

  • The audit will likely identify cash, value and efficiencies owing to the client, so you can reinvest these amounts back into your business

Who should you choose to perform the audit?

  • The audit company you choose should be experienced and independent.  They should have specific industry knowledge of how agencies practice and trade, and be aware of the terminology and jargon used by agencies.

  • Due to the sensitive nature of the commercial data that needs to be shared and analysed, the audit company should ideally be a member firm of a recognised professional accounting body and, as such, bound by their ethical guidelines providing both the advertiser and agency with a greater level of security and assurance.


When is the right time to conduct an audit?

  • We recommend that compliance audits take place every two years, and each audit covers a 2-year period. However, some clients prefer to audit each year for larger spend markets and maybe every 3 years for smaller spend markets, ensuring each market gets audited at least once every 3 years (the audit would cover all 3 years).

  • More and more clients now undertake what we call an exit audit when they are terminating a contract or changing agencies.  This enables the client to identify “what didn’t work so well” from a contractual point of view in the ending relationship to make sure things do work better in the new relationship.  As an exit audit is likely to identify monies owed to the client by the agency an exit audit should be performed BEFORE the relationship ends so as to ensure cooperation from the agency.

  • If it’s a first-time audit after a new relationship has commenced, we suggest an audit after the first full calendar year to identify any emerging issues early and then, dependent on findings, every two years thereafter.


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.

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Media Planning & Buying

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Creative & Production

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Experiential Marketing

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Field Marketing & Merchandising

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PR & Marketing Consultancy

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Barter Management

Our audit services

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Financial Compliance

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Exit Audit

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Remuneration Verification

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Contract Review

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