Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Is client conflict less of a problem in a recession?

Apparently some clients are worrying less about client conflicts these days. I heard of two cases recently where clients are turning a blind eye to conflicts that a year ago they'd have made a huge deal about. One involves two major PC manufacturers that are both working with the same agency in China. The other involves major players in the anti-virus software market who are again using the same agency, this time in the US. I take my hat off to the agencies involved for persuading the clients that it is OK. I for one have long believed that with effective Chinese walls, clients should be able to work under the same roof albeit with totally different teams. Many large companies have taken a different view. I'm therefore encouraged to see this attitude changing.

21 comments:

Matthew said...

I'm also pleased with this development. I think the problem historically has been that people put up any old wall, as opposed to Chinese ones. It's very important that they are Chinese, although I have to admit I personally don't know what particular quality Chinese walls have that enables competitive account teams to work alongside each other. I wonder if there's a link to Chinese whispers? Or Chinese burns? Ouch!

TDefren said...

Amen to this concept, Tim. Some clients even get a benefit from such arrangements, in terms of the "shared" agency's improved credential with their sector's media.

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