Brand Vs Agency – Is there a right path?

Starting off the job search in Digital Marketing can be a very daunting and confusing experience. So let our specialist recruiters shed light on the difference between working in a Brand and an Agency…

It’s likely a majority of those reading this would have been a timid graduate once, coming fresh out of University and not having a clue as to what to do next.

A shocking pile of debt amounting to more money than you have ever owned, a bedroom in a house with your overly protective mother, and a CV which is as sparse as the life and works of The Hungry Caterpillar.

Where do you go from here? Well as a result of continuous research and thorough reading, you realise this “thing” known as Digital actually sounds interesting – you know what Google is and that’s a start!

The Allure Of The Digital Marketing Industry 

Digital Marketing is an alluring industry, offering a magnitude of jobs, varied employers and the chance to earn considerable wonga if you put the hard work in. An exciting career path!

So you’ve decided upon the industry, now for the choice between Agency or Brand. “The what?!” you cry. Well please, take a seat and allow us to break that down for you…

Job Hunting

The difference between a Brand and an Agency is important when deciding what to do next. Whether a graduate looking for the first step into the industry, or a 10+ year veteran wanting to progress, it is vital you know what options are out there.

So the following is a brief lowdown as to what you need to look for and can expect from either one of these choices – Brand Vs Agency!

It’s key to note, no one path is the right path; these are merely suggestions about what both could involve, the final decision is always down to you!


  • One voice, one message, one mission
  • Ownership – you get to take control of a channel
  • Holistic approach to owning full circle of a brand’s values and identity
    • Big brand, process and procedure
    • Small brand, roll up sleeves and make it happen attitude
      • Can rapidly propel career forward, exposing you to things earlier than you would in a big company
  • Can gain specialist industry knowledge i.e. travel, luxury retail, eCommerce
  • Ownership of the budget rather than being the recipient of it
  • Long-term projects, with the chance to constantly improve and evolve
  • Collaboration with other departments, demonstrating your expertise to persuade
  • Liaise with external agencies to run campaigns.


  • Diversity, multiple brands / accounts
  • Variety of tasks – no one day is the same as the next
  • Specialist skilled professionals at cutting edge of best practice and latest technologies
  • Great grounding for specialist channel experience
  • Shared passion for Digital Marketing – many voices, many ideas
  • Great opportunity to “be like a sponge” and learn
  • Opportunity to manage multiple budgets of varying size
  • Able to build relationships with people from differing industries
  • Potential to visit clients and explore new territories
  • Lively environments with organised leisure activities – Beer Fridays are common
  • First-hand witness of your campaigns being put into fruition.

As recruiters who specialise in Digital Marketing, we constantly see patterns of the type of individuals who apply (and then excel!) in both client and agency side roles. Our advice would be the following:

If you are fresh out of University or have a genuine keen interest in joining the Digital bandwagon, an agency is perhaps the way to go. Here you will learn the underlying skills and tools that every great Digital Marketer requires, as well as surrounding yourself with like-minded peers.

Everyone in an agency has a passion for Digital and will encourage an idea-sharing culture. The hours may be long and, at first, the salary may be low, but there is a great scope for learning and career progression.

With a few years under your belt and a plethora of skills and tools at your disposal, a brand might be the next step. Here you will get the opportunity to focus all of your energy and creativity on developing one “account” as opposed to many. The hours may be more traditional and there is, potentially, a greater degree of flexibility if you have other commitments (such as a family to consider!). You may be able to play a more pivotal role in the development of the brand and seek satisfaction in the growth which you make happen.

Both agencies and brands have their perks, ones which suit individuals regardless of what stage of their career they are at. These are merely suggestions which we, as recruiters, have deduced from our point of view on such a fast-paced industry.


As always, we would love to hear your thoughts on the matter. Do you agree with us? Or does your experience working in an Agency or Brand differ?

You can get in touch with the team … In a digital way! Follow our Social Media and feel free to send us a message on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Google+!

If you require any recruitment assistance, whether Job Seeking or Recruiting in Digital, get in touch with the team now to get the recruitment ball rolling: Contact Us

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Posted in Blog Posts, Job Seeking, Recruitment |

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