What words do you use to describe your ad agency?

Choosing the right descriptive words is very important for an ad agencies new business.

Ad agencies tend to use the same descriptive words when promoting themselves. Little reason why prospective clients can’t find anything appealing when all agencies look and talk just alike. Using the same old tired agency speak.

Someone passed this agency’s website to me and I thought it would be of interest to share with you.  The Agency is Struck Creative, Salt Lake City, Utah.


The site design is nice and clean. But  I wasn’t a fan of their blog. To much about capabilities, awards, etc. not enough benefit and resource to build a prospective client audience.

What I was impressed with was the copy used to describe their agency. I thought the descriptions were very fresh.

The call themselves a “hybrid agency.” I don’t recall another agency using that word as an agency descriptor. But it unlocks a lot of positive feelings such as efficiency, innovation, clean, cool, etc. 

Their tag line also identified them with the growing influence of social media upon our industry, “Creating what you talk about.”

People are the new medium. The water cooler is the new prime time. This is a brand new era. Struck is the new brand messenger. 

Create your website and/or blog with your audience in mind. Do it without thought about another agency’s critique. Be creative in the use of words used to describe your agency. They should be differentiating and appealing to your target audience.

What words does your agency use to describe it? Anything unique and different? Please share through the comment section below.


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. Hey Michael,

    Interesting ideas. I also really like the term “hybrid” and am thinking of applying it to our business.

    Our company has actually shied away from the term “ad agency” in favor of “strategic marketing firm.” Where “agency” can denote commodity, we feel “firm” supports our positioning as both an advertising/marketing company and strategic planning firm.

    To better sum it up, we call it our Brand Formula: Marketing Savvy + Business Acumen = Success

    Between this positioning and our Pay-For-Performance compensation model, it’s really helping differentiate us among competitors in our market.

    Thanks for your continual flow of great ideas! Always useful.

    -Katy Halter, dio strategic marketing firm
    York, PA – http://www.diousa.com

  2. They stole our word 😉 I was certain “Hybrid Agency” was such a unique way of putting it… Well, back to the drawing board.

    On another note, I agree that I’m not a big fan of the flash and functionality of their site, but the content is pretty killer. Very nice job at focusing on the client’s needs.

    With our new site, the focus was showcasing everything we are capable of to current and future clients, and reinforcing our tagline, “Image is Everything” which is our philosophy on corporate identity and branding.

    Love to here what you think about it, Michael. And keep up the good work, starting to find my way to your blog more and more these days…

  3. The name of my company is Hybrid Media Group and we are a green and philanthropic, mostly digital, ad agency. I really believe that we have an extremely unique approach, just finding it hard to get the word out there. I love your blog – it’s like a treasure chest for new business development. I especially like your new approach of networking your way to clients vs.. cold calling and hard selling them which I find hard to do. Keep the great messages coming.

  4. OK, hybrid is a nice word and all, but how many potential clients are out there typing “hybrid agency” into Google?

  5. We use the word “hybrid” in a slightly different context – when trying to explain what we’re all about, we have positioned our virtually based marketing firm as a hybrid solution midway between hiring a bunch of freelancers (who can be unreliable, unresponsive and a pain to babysit) and hiring a big agency (which can be prohibitively expensive).

    Certainly customers are open at the moment to a new model, something more efficient, leaner and more direct. As you say in the blog, the word “hybrid” also points to efficiency, innovation, etc.

    Another word I’ve started to use a lot in distinguishing us from the competition is “friendly.” We’re not “too cool for school” the way some agencies are, and I think clients are responding to that, particularly in this climate.

    Thanks for the thought-provoking blog!

    Nathan Hartswick
    Asgood & Better Marketing

  6. I like that word, but agree, nobody typing into search engines. What a conundrum we all have. I think it is OK for major agencies to still use the word “advertising” which works with larger or more sophisticated clients. But for smaller shops or “hybrid” offices of larger shops like mine, the word can chase potential clients away. But there are not many other choices. Marcom/marketing communications is so old school, digital marketing can mean many things, ideas are what its about but a bit out there for some people in context of an “idea agency.” Good subject for long term discussion. Let’s revisit this post in ten years and see if we laugh at it based on whatever we all are using then.
    Eric Hyman, JWT, Atlanta, GA

  7. Thanks for taking the time to comment Eric. Insightful comments. I agree that we should revisit in 10 years. It will be interesting to see what terms we will be using by then.

  8. Thanks for your interesting posts. I wonder if the use of the word “hybrid” is more effective than the word “boutique” or even “local” especially regarding searches by prospects.

  9. You are welcome Steve. I think we need more language that resonates with our best target audience and not agency speak. There’s not much differentiation. Hybrid could become just another agency term.

  10. I’ve been around so long that anything new would not be what I’m about. I believe in original, though it must align with the tried and true. My tag is “America’s most imitated media marketing.” Everybody tells me this is bad. I tell everybody it’s true, which, for me, seems to outweigh “bad.” What do you think?

  11. We offer intelligent production and joined-up-ness. The glue that holds the whole process of implementing global campaigns together.

  12. To me its simple your name should represent the actions that you perform. We are specialize in Inbound Marketing that’s Interactive.

  13. Hybrid sounds awful! I guess they mean they’re a Toyota ;-)…sorry folks!

    But I love the ‘people are the new medium’, bit. We’re just moving to become part of the Publicis Groupe so we’re going through this whole positioning / descriptor thing ourselves. Nightmare.

    Everyone has a view – especially me as I’m probably more opinionated than most! So I think it’s about ‘connections’…that’s why the people as medium thing appeals to me.I have a bigger rationale for this if anyone’s interested.

    Looking again at the word ‘medium’, perhaps – given that we’re all so different – it shd be media? Or meedja as we say over here.

    Love the blog, tho’. Keep it comin’. If you have serious time to waste, you can check my lowly utterings on my blog.

  14. Thanks for the kind words Neil. I’ll be sure to check out your blog.

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