An advertiser on client servicing

I am an advertising copywriter, and an advertiser. I've written this on the basis on my limited knowledge of client servicing. Your comments are welcome.

I write and ideate. I respect advertising and believe an ad agency’s employees should take a joint initiative to take their organisation ahead. And I’ve fought with client service executives, part of whose job is to explain to me what the client wants to be done. Arguements are a part of the client servicing-creative relationship. My job isn’t hunky dory always, just as the account executive's isn’t. But I see many capable account executives being wasted or wasting themselves. What’s the point of doing an MBA? According to an article, an MBA degree helps our executive to give reassuring answers to the client’s questions promptly, and spout ‘intelligent’ words, so that the ad agency’s reputation is upheld. Aspiring client servicing execs., please make sure your MBA is put to good use.

One should know how to get ahead and achieve something that’ll make them knowledgeable and smart. The sad fact is that some of them get an illusion of being that way. They never know who is cursing them behind their back. And who pities them – I pity plenty of them. It may be years, why, even a decade or two when ignorant and poor account executives truly grow in their profession.

I’ve to give the talented, hardworking kind plenty of credit. Clients are people like us after all; each one has different characteristics and temperaments. Account executives need to do a variety of tasks and run around a lot. They have to put up with explosive tempers and tantrums. They have to be thick skinned to do their work well. No way am I thick skinned, and I admire those with the ability. Just as there are a variety of clients, there are different kinds of client service executives too. From the ones you love to hate to the ones you admire. The extremely smart types can go on to do anything. They can handle people very well, are cool about things, and are street smart and worldly wise. But there are plenty of others who’ve definitely not reached that level, many having no clue that they’re nowhere near it. Let’s know about them.

How pathetic client service executives (willing peons, in other words) work:

They get into a sad agency (pun unintended) in the first place. Or they get into an agency that encourages their idiosyncrasies. In which case the agency does well, but not some of the employees.

They just send the creative team whatever the client sends, without analyzing it. The creative team asks a thousand questions. They get back to the client. Hence many emails go back and forth, while things could’ve been done at a shot, by getting a proper brief at the beginning. They also have to interact with the client, take their positive and negative comments. That is difficult . But the same kind of emailing and client interaction keeps happening. The executives never sit and think about anything.

Sometimes, they make huge bloopers and try to cover up their mistakes by claiming that they didn’t say certain things, or passing the blame. (They never fail to point out your smallest mistakes. But actually, you should not complain about that.)

Sometimes, the entire bunch of client service executives and the management pounces upon the hapless creative team when problems arise. I’ve had useless fights with account executives but now I’m wiser and smarter.

Then there are the talented, hardworking client service executives stuck in sad agencies.

They keep on slogging, and maintain cordial client relationships. However, something stops them from taking the next big step. Some of them may not be proficient in English. This will cause a problem when they try to move to big agencies.

These people should learn about what is needed to become highly capable in their field, in every way. And work towards it. Client servicing is a great profession to be in. I am incredibly jealous of those smart ones. I was forced to do some client servicing at the beginning of my career, but was terrible at it. However, I would love to improve myself and do it at some stage in my life, while still pursuing copywriting.

My message to the client servicing executives who read through this, with or without getting livid, or cursing me is this: if you’re serious about doing well in your field, do what you have to for improvement. If your agency is ok with any stupid actions that you know deep down, are unprofessional, the agency is going to take you nowhere in your career. Work for your progress. All the best.