When agencies come together, everyone demands immediate clarity and impact. So creating alignment and setting priorities needs to happen fast.

mergers and acquisitions

Whether you’ve acquired or you’re the acquirer, bringing two agencies together through mergers and acquisitions creates tension – alongside a healthy excitement, there are also plenty of concerns. 

Many people are looking for value, while others seek reassurance. In either case, an absence of clarity creates a dangerous vacuum that sucks in goodwill, optimism, and momentum. 

Despite this obvious truth, it’s all too easy for new owners to neglect integration and for the newly acquired to feel like they’re drowning in ambiguity. No wonder the promised land prophesied in the press release often falls short of expectations

Of course, it’s not always this dramatic – especially with mergers – but even with the best planned deals, there are many questions to answer. What changes and what stays the same? What’s the shared story? How will you combine cultures and establish shared proof points and language? 

In short, the clock is ticking. So how can you quickly bring strong personalities together to define an actionable roadmap?

Finding deeper differentiation 

Regardless of the nature of the mergers and acquisitions deal, your goal is accelerating the right kind of sustainable growth. That increasingly relies on differentiation across your entire Customer Experience (CX). So whether that requires full reinvention or more nuanced optimisation, you need to define priority improvements across what you do, not just what you say.

That’s why Co:definery has partnered with creative leadership specialists Curve to develop the Agency Transformation Roadmap – a clear, actionable plan for business-wide change. 

Creating your Transformation Roadmap

Taking your leadership team through a short series of immersive workshops, the process grades your collective aspirations and progress against seven pillars of agency Customer Experience: 

  1. Strategy – e.g. differentiation, value proposition, internal buy-in, purpose, target audience
  2. Leadership – e.g. collaboration, innovation, togetherness, delegation, self care & team care, organisation
  3. People – e.g. DEI, talent attraction / development, performance management
  4. Commercial – e.g. profit clarity, financial KPIs, confident decision making
  5. Craft – e.g. quality standards, creative leadership, skills development
  6. Marketing – e.g. effectiveness, consistency, thought leadership, website, campaigns, upstream prospecting
  7. Sales – e.g. sales culture, share of wallet, client data, partnering, value-based selling, pricing innovation.

Keeping things structured and fast, we combine your views with our own experience and recommendations to create the following deliverables: 

  1. Agreed strengths, weaknesses and blind spots
  2. Achievable priorities
    • ranked for importance vs. urgency
    • clear owners, actions and deadlines
    • clarity on how success is defined.

Disagreements are resolved, everyone learns a lot and the actions are agreed in the room, so you’re ready to get moving straight away. 

And where you need outside help to maximise momentum – and make change stick – then Co:definery and Curve design a bespoke programme of consulting, coaching and mentoring support. 

“The Agency Transformation Roadmap process was incredibly useful for Engine, giving us a meaningful new focus and energy. By serving up independent, considered and rigorous insights, it sparked frank debate about our future strategy.

That impartiality helped us get elephants out of the corner, creating a space of openness and trust where everyone felt comfortable to reimagine or reinvent, without feeling protective of the status quo.

I would recommend it highly.”

Jim Moffatt, CEO Europe & Asia Pacific, Engine

Set your course for growth

Despite it being a cliché to describe the integration of two businesses as changing the wheels on a moving bus, it’s easy to underestimate how complex it can be – especially if it’s your first time. 

For the acquired CEO in particular, the workload, new opportunities, and mix of expectations can be overwhelming. So the process of alignment and priority setting requires decisive action. 

And because clients are demanding deeper, more demonstrable expertise, building differentiation through a shared Customer Experience is essential. 

The Agency Transformation Roadmap defines your shortest course to sustainable growth and empowers you and your team to deliver lasting change. 

The process creates a safe space to resolve difficult issues with mergers and acquisitions. And because you take those decisions together, the shared commitment makes everyone accountable for change. 

From there you can accelerate growth with clarity and conviction.

Find out more by getting in touch.

Image: Tsvetoslav Hristov