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Advertising Agency

An advertising agency, often referred to as a creative agency, is a business dedicated to creating, planning, and handling advertising and sometimes other forms of promotion and marketing for its clients. An ad agency is generally independent from the client; it may be an internal department or agency that provides an outside point of view to the effort of selling the client’s products or services, or an outside firm. Agency executives serve as the client’s principal adviser on advertising and promotion matters.

Advertising agencies have existed in their modern form since the latter part of the 19th century. The first recognized advertising agency was William Taylor in 1869. His company put together advertisements for soap and candles manufacturers. From these humble beginnings, agencies have now become multi-billion dollar global enterprises. The four largest agencies, by revenue, are WPP, Omnicom, Publicis and Interpublic.

Advertising agencies come in all shapes and sizes, from small boutique shops to large multinational firms. They offer a variety of services, including but not limited to: strategic planning, account management, media buying and placement, creative development, production, research and analysis. Many agencies also specialize in specific industry sectors or marketing disciplines.

The structure of an advertising agency can vary greatly depending on its size and the nature of its business. The most common type of agency is the full-service agency, which offers a complete range of services including: market research, media planning and buying, creative development, production, and evaluation. Other types of agencies include: in-house agencies, boutique agencies, and holding companies.