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Agency Life

Who needs a TAAN?

The benefits of our TAAN membership

Think there’s a typo in that headline? Wrong. TAAN stands for Transworld Advertising Agency Network.

TAAN is the oldest worldwide agency network and has member agencies in 47 markets around the world. From South Africa to St. Louis, members meet and share openly and willingly. Often they will partner on projects when the blend of expertise or location makes sense for the client.

TAAN is a membership-based organization with dues and benefits and responsibilities, created for agency owners. We are very honest about everything happening at our “shop” and look for advice from others. The most exciting part is that we truly are global. Every two years we hold global meetings where we not only learn new ways of approaching the advertising business, but get a chance to build or renew relationships with folks from other cultures and countries.

So why is TAAN important to our clients? One benefit is that we have reliable relationships with at least 30 agencies from around the country and over the oceans. Another is that we get outside the agency walls for three days twice a year. We spend so many intense hours focused on meeting deadlines, accomplishing creative goals, establishing brands and making sure the right ad ran, there’s not much time to think. Attending presentations by industry specialists gives us a chance to step back from the daily hustle, process new lessons and apply them to our own situations. Also, we get to have one-on-one conversations with colleagues from other agencies about all sorts of important minutiae that we can’t talk about with folks at our own agency. It’s stimulating and energizing — and a client wants a stimulated, energized agency. Of course a side of discipline and process orientation is valuable too!

Now there is one caveat — if I don’t act on the new information and new perspectives I’ve gained at a TAAN meeting, I haven’t helped my agency. So the next time you’re considering an agency — to hire or to work for — ask if it has ever been a network member — and whether it has applied any of the knowledge gained as a result.

Did I mention that I just returned from a TAAN meeting (which we hosted in Wilmington, DE)? The focus was on applying social media to an agency’s growth.

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