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Agency sites try too hard…

May 29, 2007 at 1:13 by Mark Comments

Have you noticed that 99% of major global agencies (and I mean the big five groups – not the independant agencies)have bad sites or a holding-page or nothing at all… I find it weird that as agency folk we don’t always put forward our best work on our own sites (from a design/execution perspective). I know, I know – we are all too busy working on cool work for clients which actually pay the bills but I just wish that one MAJOR agency network would break free and really do a site that is worthy of a global award in its own right or at least get big respect from the peer community for pushing it hard whilst keeping some sense of usability. Check out the new site for tbwahakuhodo in Tokyo… it’s a monster/great amount of work they did, but it’s sooooo frustrating and hard to find anything you may want to look at as a prospective client. It’s cool, but I think it’s only for the “sake of cool”. Can anyone send an agency site that is both ground-breaking (design/tech) and usable from a (god forbid – client angle!!)?
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22 Responses to Agency sites try too hard…

  1. Thor says:

    Check out walrusnyc.com

  2. marka says:

    I agree with Thor. I LOVE the walrusnyc.com site. Makes me laugh every time. Very nice.

  3. Rob says:

    You are so right! This has been a rant of mine for a while. I think it shows how seriously they take the web as a marketing medium.
    And that Leo Burnett site… Poef! Its a flash monster that looks really pretty but is a challenge to use and obviously completely invisible to the search engines. Bottom line, its not a site that’s going to attract, retain and convert its visitors.
    My 2c.
    Also I dig your blog, I think this is my first comment, so… hi!

  4. DT says:

    Have you seen the new WK.com site for Wieden and Kennedy. It is amazing. They are one of the best agencies around.

  5. Simon says:

    A lot of these sites just confirm client’s worst fears about how difficult, inaccessible and just confusing design agencies are. For us simplicity is everything, as we need to put our philosophy of ‘creativity distilled’ into action.
    We’ve got along way to go as we continue to develop our site, but we think its a great start!
    http://www.rckt.co.uk

  6. Jeff says:

    Hi,
    check out http://www.maxomedia.com. small but nice.
    and… yess DT, WK.com is state-of-the-art. Both, site and agency.

  7. Tim Palmer says:

    If you are searching for an agency site that gives the big creative wow, and educates their potential client base also, I think you could be searching for something that doesn’t exist, and in my opinion, proabably shouldn’t exist.
    Creative agencies are all about the work, the work and the work, and their site should display this. You don’t see The Crown Jewels being presented in a hugely elaborate case, because people just want to see the Crown, not the glass box it is in.
    Agency sites should be informative, simple, and display their best pieces of creativity.
    I work at this agency – http://www.daredigital.com .That site does the above.

  8. Jonathan says:

    http://www.lovecreative.com
    we’re thinking of replacing this little online book website for something altogether more complex

  9. SJ says:

    Speaking from experience, working for one of the big five agencies presents its own challenges.
    I think often the sheer volume of stakeholders, and their ego’s, often preclude people from undertaking an endeavor of this kind.
    Rightly or wrongly, I have seen some amazing concepts railroaded by CD’s, CEO’s and Chairman who do not understand the medium at all.
    Its often simpler left alone as the politics can be mind blowing.

  10. Renee Miller says:

    Check out http://www.millergroup.net. It certainly is easy to navigate and highlights the print and broadcast work.

  11. andy dougan says:

    Here’s a non biased opinion as it’s for my previous agency who I believe have a cracking website.
    ELVIS is a fantastic integrated agency based in London with some pretty cool clients. Whilst I was there we redesigned the agency site and the key criteria were to keep it very very simple, keep the content light, make it simple to navigate and show our best creative work – that’s it.
    It’s nothing ground breaking and the content IS very light but isn’t that what clients want and they are afterall the primary audience.
    http://www.elviscommunications.com

  12. Agency sites shouldn’t blow people’s minds away. They should be clean, easy to navigate, and show off their portfolio. Let their clients have the flashy stuff.

  13. Jess says:

    I think that my company’s site http://www.streetattack.com is both easy to navigate and a good representation of our company’s innovative creativity. …I mean I’m bias but it is pretty cool.

  14. Phil says:

    As a recent Circus Grad I’ve been combing through all the agency sites as I search for a job. I have been very surprised to find that most are almost impossible to get through. The work may be great, but half the time you can’t find it, and there have only been a few I’ve looked at that the site itself made me laughing, and entertained me enough to want to search through the whole site. http://www.fortfranklin.com is probably my favorite so far. It’s easy to navigate, but it’s also full of hidden links and characters, so you have incentive to keep looking. I think an agencies site should give some insight into how they think, not just what they do.

  15. Lanina says:

    http://www.interone.de/cms/de/
    that one is really good as well!!!
    check it out,….

  16. Joris says:

    How about this? I mean, of course I’m biased, but I think http://www.s-w-h.com is a good example of what you mean.

  17. Take a look at this site, http://www.rang.co.in
    You just might find something very colourful :)

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