thenetworkone: For Marketing Clients

The world’s leading independent agencies: a unique global network, on demand.

Over almost 20 years, thenetworkone has visited, interviewed, evaluated and accredited more than 1200 independent marketing and communications agencies in 116 countries worldwide

Why independents?

90% of our agencies are “owner-managed businesses”. Some may benefit from external finance, but none are controlled by faraway financial holding companies who tell them who to hire and fire, or how to run their businesses. Their management teams are part of the communities where they work and operate.

The traditional strengths of independent agencies are still relevant: speed, agility, lower overheads, access to top management, focus on client needs rather than corporate politics.

But today, we’d also highlight four new factors:

  • Ability to complement, not compete with your in-house teams
  • Cultural insight – at speed, not scale. Our agencies live in their communities. They are instinctively attuned to cultural shifts, new trends and current events. They deliver initiatives, not just “solutions”.
  • They are empowered to shop around for partners and contractors, to create the best local ecosystem of experts and practitioners, for your individual needs.
  • The best talent does not always work like a traditional agency. Some staffing may be long term, other resources can be brought in only when needed. “Everything you need, and nothing you don’t” – in today’s digital world, the promise becomes reality.

Just imagine

Would you like to choose from:

The world’s best creative agencies, at your call

The world’s newest marketing technology, at your disposal

The world’s most diverse creative community

The world’s most agile working methodology

The world’s smartest talent – wherever it lives, whenever you need it

How do we choose which agencies to recommend to you?

We start with your brief. Then we match that against six key factors:


Location: where do you need the agency(s) to be, and/or produce work for?


Capabilities: what skills do you need the agency to have: advertising, PR, media planning and buying, branding and design, digital and social media, etc.


Experience: do you require knowledge of a particular sector: like packaged goods, healthcare, technology, automotive, B2B, financial services, etc.


The role of the agency: will it be strategic or executional? Are you looking for customer insight, or adaptation and activation? What do you need from them, that you don’t already have in-house?


Availability: is the agency conflict-free, and does it have adequate resources available for your needs? An indication of your budget is helpful too.


Cultural fit: An independent agency has its own values, personality, style and way of working. So do you – both as an individual, and as a Company. As in life, the best relationships begin with a sense that “we ‘get’ them, and they ‘get’ us.”


The last point is as important as the first five. It’s why we only recommend agencies we know personally.

Our aim is to recommend and introduce the best agency(s) for your individual needs. We are a bespoke consulting service, not a just a directory, a database or a SaaS platform. We use Artificial Intelligence, but also the Human kind.


How would you stay in control?

Our first task is to understand how you work, and help customise your agency ecosystem to match. But there are three core models:

A direct relationship between the ‘central client’ and each agency. For example, if you are looking only for an agency in your own country, or for a specific project, like a re-branding exercise.


A lead agency, overseeing other ‘local’ agencies. This allows for efficient interaction between your colleagues in individual markets, and ‘their’ local agency contacts. The lead agency ensures coherent messaging and compliance with your company’s values and ways of working, with consistent reporting formats; and also funnels local insights and initiatives to you for consideration, approval and potentially wider adoption


A Virtual Company, reporting to you. Models a) and b) have served us well for many years, but modern technology and increased remote working practices have inspired a new, third option – of particular interest to companies concerned about their responsibility for their supply chains, in which marketing services providers are important participants.

Who else is doing this?

Over the years, many of the world’s leading marketing companies and organisations are benefiting from thenetworkone’s independent agency selection system. They range from large global companies like Johnson & Johnson, Exxon Mobil, Lufthansa, GSK, Audi and Dyson to smaller, often private companies like Rosland Capital, Freshpet, Air Serbia, Glenfiddich whisky, Japan House and ACS International Schools.

You’ll be in good – and growing – company.

How long does it take?

A traditional agency pitch process, starting with an RFI to a search consultancy, usually takes around three months. This is catastrophically slow, in 2022.

thenetworkone can normally provide an initial recommendation within 48 hours of receiving a brief – and a definitive recommendation, following a conflict and availability check, within a week.

We work at internet speed!

How much does it cost?

 A single agency recommendation and introduction (often used by clients as a ‘proof of concept’) is free of charge to corporate clients, when a clear brief is received. “Do you have an agency in Australia?” is not a brief!

A multi-agency or network recommendation has a ratecard cost of US$ 1,000 per country but can vary, depending on your requirements – for example, whether you need us to manage a competitive pitch process, or simply arrange a credentials presentation from a single agency group, or travel with you to visit prospective agencies in real life (less common in Covid times).

thenetworkone is paid a fixed commission by agencies for successful business introductions, which means we don’t need to charge clients an economic cost. All agencies pay the same, which ensures our recommendations are objective! The sole criteria; is, who is the best fit – and what is the best way of working – for you, the Client.

Who do I contact?

Please feel to reach out to thenetworkone leadership team in London:

Julian Boulding:

Stephanie Fox:

Or call us on +44 207 240 7117