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The Top 10


The Top 100 Brands for Independent Agencies

Based on Pearlfinders' first-hand conversations with marketing budget-holders we have established that every brand on this list works with independent agencies.

Beyond this, our rankings are based on criteria including their attitude towards working with smaller agencies, sector buoyancy, upcoming reviews, new senior appointments, and the company's financial health. 

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The Top 10


The Top 100 Brands for Independent Agencies

Based on Pearlfinders' first-hand conversations with marketing budget-holders we have established that every brand on this list works with independent agencies.

Beyond this, our rankings are based on criteria including their attitude towards working with smaller agencies, sector buoyancy, upcoming reviews, new senior appointments, and the company's financial health. 

The Top 10

These brands might not be the first that spring to mind as being a natural fit for independent or boutique agencies. And yet time and time again we are told by the largest brands in the world that what they really care about is finding a partner that is able to efficiently solve their business challenges. For each, we have provided a brief overview of what makes them a good prospect.

 

1. Coca-Cola - Agencies with one or more Coca-Cola brands on their client list will know that its procurement process can be fairly arduous. However, it does have a good track record for working with indies and brand managers regularly tell us that they will "coach" agencies through the process. With reviews scheduled for later this year and new marketers recently appointed, it's well worth a considered approach here.

More on Coca-Cola

2. PepsiCo - Last month, we learned that while long-standing incumbents are focused on testing concepts and developing campaigns, the company is looking outside its roster to gather inspiration and new concepts to get closer to the consumer.  As of last year - unlike Coke - procurement no longer handles agency appointments, allowing Pepsi marketers to develop lasting relationships and build a rapport with suppliers.

More on PepsiCo

3. BMW - Here indies should be setting their sights on winning work with the Mini brand, which wants to align itself with the ideas of action and adventure via innovative, humorous campaigns. Post-Brexit, there are undoubtedly meetings underway from Oxford to Munich to determine the best global strategy for this British icon. 

More on BMW

4. Premier Foods - While JWT and McCann are both prominent on the roster, we’re told that at brand level, agencies of all sizes are regularly trialled on a particular project, with a success on one brand translating to cross category appointments. The company has also appointed new marketing budget holders and scheduled reviews for later this year.

More on Premier Foods

5. McDonald's - Regional activation and grassroots campaigns are increasingly a priority for McDonald's across its vast global sponsorship portfolio, driving a need for local creative and experiential partners. Social media is another potential "in" - we're told having a niche or specialist offering in relation to one social channel is the best way to stand out. 

More on McDonald's

6. Unilever – This FMCG behemoth naturally works with global networks from WPP to Omnicom, but with so many brands under its belt – and a number of recent acquisitions within its profitable personal goods space – we’ve been told there’s a preference at some of its brands for cost-effecitive, smaller agencies able to work within budgets and tight turnaround times.

More on Unilever

7. Porsche – The brand may derive most of its profit from HNWIs but it's marketing is increasingly focused on building its stock among younger audiences. With profits up, new marketers appointed to the relatively small in-house team, and a range of new channels currently under consideration, we think it's highly likely it will add to the list of independent shops currently on its roster. 

More on Porsche

8. Nestlé – When you’re a company that’s already recognised on a global scale, it can be difficult to develop relevance with an even wider audience – at least according to this brand’s senior marketers. We’re aware that several Nestlé brands’ agency priorities remain with those who can offer a real niche and specialist service, with a view to increasing market share.

More on Nestlé

9. HSBC – With several strategic reviews imminent, both digital and experiential channels remain a high-priority for the bank this year, as its presses forward with its decision to keep its headquarters within the UK. We’re told the company prefers to work with a range of agencies offering their services on a project basis, with surprisingly conservative sponsorship budgets driving its preference for smaller shops that can make their mark.

More on HSBC

10. Mars – With a senior management shake-up following its celebrated former-CMO's retirement, we reckon significant change could be afoot here. We’ve previously been told that niche agencies are brought on to help where a USP is clearly evident, with the brand retaining a number of specialists across various channels.

More on Mars

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The Top 100


The Top 100 Brands Most Likely to Work with Independent Agencies

The Top 100


The Top 100 Brands Most Likely to Work with Independent Agencies

The Top 100

From fast growing challengers to the biggest companies in the world, all of the brands in this list already work with independent agencies, or have expressed interest in the advantages smaller, independent suppliers offer. To view the company page for a brand simply click on their name.

If you would like any more information on The Top 100 Brands For Independent Agencies please contact Adam Killip (adam.killip@pearlfinders.com)