What is your ad agency’s specialty?

I’ve been conducting some online ad agency research this morning. I must have reviewed over a hundred agency profiles.  Not many stand out, just more and more of the same.

Below is an example, a portion of the profile of a 6 person ad agency, found on one of the online agency directories. It’s typical of many of the profiles that you find for small to midsize ad agencies.

Agency Specializes in:

Automotive Exhibit/Trade Shows Pharmaceutical
Aviation & Aerospace Fashion/Apparel Planning & Consultation
Bilingual Marketing Financial Point of Purchase
Brand Development &        Integration Food Service Point of Sale
Business-To-Business Government/Political/Public Affairs Print
Collateral Graphic Design Production
Communications Health Care Public Relations
Consumer Marketing High Technology Real Estate
Corporate Communications Internet/Web Design Restaurant
Corporate Identity Investor Relations Retail
Cosmetics Legal Services Seniors’ Market
Direct Response Marketing Leisure Sports Marketing
E-Commerce Logo & Package Design Strategic Planning/Research
Education Magazines Teen Market
Engineering Marine Trade & Consumer Magazines
Entertainment Newspapers & Magazines Transportation
Event Planning & Marketing Over-50 Market Travel & Tourism

On agency websites, agency directories, presentations, RFP responses, most agencies are inclined to check all the boxes and list all the categories they possibly can. Why? Because they are afraid that if they leave something out, they’ll miss out on a piece of business.

If you want new business for your agency, you need a point of difference and a narrower focus instead of trying to be everything to every company. Think narrow and deep instead of wide and shallow.

If your agency is trying to appeal to everyone it won’t appeal to anyone.


About Michael Gass

Consultant | Trainer | Author | Speaker

Since 2007, he has been pioneering the use of social media, inbound and content marketing strategies specifically for agency new business.

He is the founder of Fuel Lines Business Development, LLC, a firm which provides business development training and consulting services to advertising, digital, media and PR agencies.


  1. I know it sounds flip, but our agency specializes in ideas. Nothing else.

  2. “If your agency is trying to appeal to everyone it will appeal to no one.” So true.

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