ORLANDO — After a spate of controversies in the last couple of years, ad agencies are enduring choppy waters, as many brand clients look use software, for themselves, to execute some of the traditional functions of their agencies.

A recent Association of National Advertisers (ANA) survey showed 35% of marketers expanded their in-house media buying capabilities in 2017

But, speaking at a new ANA event, one agency rebooted for the new world made a strong case for retaining an agency relationship.

“Now is the time, more than ever, to really look at partnerships differently and look at agencies, I believe, as your true partners in sifting and navigating through this and working with the media companies, agencies, clients, consumers, all at the table to try and sort our way through this,” said Wavemaker US CEO Amanda Richman in this video interview with Beet.TV

“I think it’s a world where there can be divides. We need to start to bring the organizations together, because everyone really want trust to be an imperative in the marketplace and we need trust with our consumers and we need to earn that back again.”

Wavemaker was formed in 2017 out of the merger of MEC and Maxus Global, with brand clients like Vodafone, L’Oréal, IKEA and Paramount Pictures.

Richman says there is an opportunity for agencies to help at both the big and the small levels – that is, helping brands hit marketing scale, but also helping them understand how to personalize individual content experiences for their audiences.

This series “Growing Brands and Driving Results,” was produced at the ANA Masters in Marketing ’18 conference in Orlando. The series is sponsored by the FreeWheel Council for Premium Video. Please find additional coverage here.