Marketing & Media News South Africa

Subscribe to industry newsletters

Search jobs

Creative agencies contribute to Spanish advertisers' business growth

Ikea, Coca-Cola and Apple occupy the first three positions as companies most admired for their marketing in Scopen's 23rd edition of Agency Scope in Spain.
Source: © In Spain News  Spanish beer company Cruzcampo uses AI to resurrect legendary singer Lola Flores for its latest advertising campaign.
Source: © In Spain News In Spain News Spanish beer company Cruzcampo uses AI to resurrect legendary singer Lola Flores for its latest advertising campaign.

Ikea, Coca-Cola and Apple occupy the first three positions as companies most admired for their marketing in Scopen’s 23rd edition of Agency Scope in Spain.

The most remembered campaigns are: Con Mucho Acento by Cruzcampo, Don Dinero by Bankinter and Take and eat all of it by Burger King.

The study, carried out every two years, analyses advertiser relationships with the agencies they work with, as well as the perception and image of agencies and other specialist marketing & communication agents in Spain. The results obtained are also compared with previous editions of the study and with the eleven markets where it is carried out, with the aim of analysing the evolution of trends.


  • Contest method
  • When selecting a new agency to work with - both creative and media - marketing managers continue to turn to the contest method (in 85% of cases).

    In Spain, only 10% of the decisions are by International Imposition (10%) and the process with the support of Recruitment Consultants represents 9%. Internationally, the United Kingdom is the leading country when it comes to selection of creative agencies by contest, with almost 93% of accounts won with this system.

    In this case, Spain is below the global average, which almost reaches 78%.

  • Four key criteria
  • The four key criteria when selecting a creative agency are Creativity, a good Team of Professionals, Strategic Planning and Digital Capacity. In the selection process of media agencies, Negotiation and Purchasing capacity, Strategic Planning, good Team of professionals and Digital Capacity are highlighted.

  • Sources of information
  • When interviewees are asked about the sources of information they use to create a long list of agencies (both creative and media), most mention aspects related to the Visibility and Prestige of the agencies (87.7%), to a greater extent than we have seen in the past, and also with higher percentages than those found in other markets where the study is carried out.

    The most mentioned reference is the work carried out by the agency (77.7%).

  • Qualities of a creative agency
  • The most important qualities for marketing managers when defining a creative agency as 'ideal' are: Creativity/Innovative Ideas, Knowledge (market, client, brand) and Account Service/Customer Service. In the case of media agencies, Account Service/Customer Service, Knowledge (media, market, client, brand) and Negotiation Capacity/Achievement of good prices stand out the most.

  • Duration
  • The average duration of the relationship with creative agencies continues to decrease (4.1 years, compared to 4.3 in 2020 and 5.1 in 2018). Independent agencies and small companies have a shorter average duration (2.0 and 2.9 years) and the duration is longer amongst agencies belonging to groups (holdings) -(5.8 years).

    We also found some differences by geographical area, and Barcelona has a longer relationship duration than Madrid (5.3 versus four years). Globally, Portugal continues to be the leading market in terms of relationship duration, with 6.4 years (the only market that exceeds six years on average), and China, on the other hand, the one with the shortest relationships (3.1 years).

    If we look at media agencies, we find more stable relationships: the average duration of the relationship in Spain is 4.9 years (4.8 years in 2020), in line with the world average (4.8 years). Portugal is once again the market with the longest relationships (6.5 years on average) and China the country with the shortest duration (3.1 years).

    Also in this case, independent agencies and small companies have a shorter average duration (3.9 and 3.8 years) and among group agencies, the duration is longer (5.5 years).

Growth of business and satisfaction

Advertisers rank the contribution of their creative agencies to the growth of their business as high (> 50%) or medium (10%-50%), in 67% of cases, a percentage very similar to that declared in reference to their media agencies (68%).

Regarding the level of satisfaction of advertisers with the work carried out by their agencies, we find 89% are highly satisfied in the case of creative agencies, and 92% in that of media agencies.

Only slightly more than 2% declare dissatisfaction with the service they receive from their current agencies. In the few cases where the possibility of changing is raised, the Conjunctural reasons (such as termination of the contract) are the first mentioned for both types of agencies, followed by the Economic/OptimiSAtion Aspects (with creative agencies) and the Service (with media agencies).

Challenges for the future

In the last two years, the sector has undergone important changes that make the challenges that marketers detect and that they will have to face in the coming years evident.

The most mentioned are:

  • Consumer Knowledge and the ability to reach Consumers (39%)
  • Ability to adapt to new uncertain times (38%)
  • Reinforce their capacities in media planning and buying (38%, new in this edition)
  • Strengthen their capacities in data (18%).

On the other hand, the main challenges that they believe their creative agencies are facing are:

  • Reinforcing capacities in creativity and innovation (42%)
  • Better consumer knowledge and reinforcing the capacities to reach consumers (22%).
  • In some areas (digital, data, processes and methodologies, technology...), advertisers consider that agencies have exceeded - a clear reflection that they have been investing a lot of resources to do so in recent years.

    Agency Scope is the only study of its kind carried out in the sector and its main value is to provide agencies that subscribe to it with key information to find out the current needs of their clients.

    The report gives them a unique tool to improve and offer new services that address current and future needs of marketers.

    Let's do Biz