Ambitious in-house agencies need strategy capabilities


In-house agencies are evolving, with half aspiring to become a lead creative agency for their brand in future, a new study finds, but for that to happen they’ll need to develop greater strategy capabilities.

That’s according to a survey of in-house agencies, conducted by the In-House Agency Leaders Club (IHALC) across almost 50 brands in the UK and EMEA, that aims to provide benchmarking data for the sector.

Why it matters

In-house agencies (IHAs) are growing more confident in their abilities, with around 60% now working on above-the-line advertising and headcount expected to increase this year. But the study notes that “there is still work to be done to ensure alignment between what the IHA believes it is there to do, and the actual remit and/or operational potential afforded to the business”.


  • External agency partners remain a vital part of the mix, for now, with 82% of IHAs turning to them for above-the-line campaign creative and 64% seeing them as partners rather than rivals.
  • IHA leaders score their marketing colleagues poorly for quality of briefing, understanding the creative process and ability to give feedback.
  • Only 35% of IHAs currently have any planning capability; only 22% have a strategy director or equivalent.

This article first appeared in

Seeking to build and grow your brand using the force of consumer insight, strategic foresight, creative disruption and technology prowess? Talk to us at +971 50 6254340 or or visit

About Author

Comments are closed.