EPIC Blog | Caring for Your Brand Starts with Account Management

Caring For Your Brand: It Starts with Account Management

author: Erin Puariea Clark

Written by: Erin Puariea Clark

VP, Client Service + Account Management


  • Best Practices

A brand is the sum of everything it’s ever done—reputation, credibility, and style. It’s a living thing that grows and evolves, and it requires care and attention. So handing off the brand can make a marketing leader nervous. That’s why a strong relationship between agency and client is the foundation for great work. After all, you wouldn’t leave your child or pet with just anyone. The same goes for your brand. You need to be confident that someone has the right experience, knows you, and knows your “baby.”

At EPIC, it’s the account manager’s job to build and maintain your confidence and trust. To not just be a steward of that brand, but also to guide it forward. Your account management team will become an extension of you and your brand. But how does that all happen?

The onset of our relationship

Our relationship with you begins with new client transitioning and onboarding. It’s essential to know what will make a new partnership a success. Trust is the cornerstone of this. We have a philosophy at EPIC of “with, not for.” It’s not just something we say, it’s something we believe. We work “with” each other, not “for” each other. It’s a small distinction, but ultimately it means that we’re in it together. We need each other.

Our first order of business is to listen and understand. This includes conversations around how we’ll work together and communicate, and the key data of your business and customers.

We don’t go at things with a one-size-fits-all approach; every client and every project is just a little different and has its own nuances. It all comes down to communication. (And understanding!) A few of the things we cover as we begin our relationship include:

  • Brand DNA: goals, objectives, aspirations, and ultimately defining what success looks like
  • Setting expectations early and often: everything from meeting scheduling to points of contact, the review and approval process, and yes, even administrative housekeeping / invoicing.
  • How to address issues with respect and honesty
  • How we achieve and demonstrate results
  • When and how various individuals prefer to communicate
  • What’s urgent and what isn’t—and the right response and timing for each

Your EPIC team

Having a single point of contact from both sides (client and EPIC) is generally the easiest and cleanest way to pass along information, project details, deadlines, revisions, notes, questions, and concerns. This also prevents asking or answering duplicate questions or providing conflicting direction, which can cause confusion or disorganization.

That being said, there may be times when it doesn’t make sense to have a sole point of contact. If that’s the case, we’ll clearly define the roles and expertise of each team member, along with what they’ll be responsible for.

Based on the client, scope of work, and work to be done, we’ll assess account management and team needs. In most cases, we assign a dedicated senior partner, account manager, and creative director—this is your core management team, responsible for driving your business and leading strategic planning within the walls of EPIC.

The account manager will be your day-to-day go-to contact, serving as your advocate within the walls of EPIC and dedicated to championing your goals and objectives. They will help develop the insights that drive creative and evaluate each strategic or project need, to determine what additional EPIC team members or category experts should be involved.

Building your marketing plan

Every strategic plan starts by bringing together the key client stakeholders and the core EPIC team for an initial planning meeting. We use this time to discuss, understand, and clarify the following:

  • Your organization’s big-picture goals: What will success for the year (or for a campaign) look like in terms of awareness, interest, inquiries, and revenue?
  • The offering(s) we are promoting: What is the value proposition for each audience, and what are the features and benefits? What problem does it solve? Why does your audience need this?
  • The primary, secondary, and tertiary audiences: Who are your customers? What are their demographics and what do we already know about them? What are their unique personas? What are their practical needs and what drives them emotionally? What do they know and trust about you? What do they see as your strengths and weaknesses?

We back that up with research. Answers to the questions we discuss in that initial strategy meeting are the foundation for everything we do as we develop our plan. What we don’t learn from you directly we research independently, to gain further insight. Every research approach is situational, based on the goals of the research, existing evidence, timeline, and budget.

Then we bring it all together.

Based on our planning meeting and research—and armed with a complete understanding of the physical and emotional landscape—our team will build a marketing strategy to accomplish your creative and communication goals. The resulting plan will then be presented to your team—along with the key performance indicators that can be used to measure success—for review, discussion, refinement, and approval.

What happens next and how does it all get done?

We have a team of project managers who will own your projects and campaigns within the walls of EPIC. They are responsible for moving the projects through production, monitoring timelines and budgets, and creating efficiencies along the way—which helps to ensure the best use of your resources.

Your account manager is responsible for ongoing account strategy and planning, day-to-day communication, proposal and creative-brief development, and internal collaboration. That is a constant for you. The project manager/s and producers will be assigned based on the scope and needs of the work to be accomplished.

With all these pieces working together, we can care for and guide your “baby” with you. In reality, you don’t hand off the brand completely. We’re always working closely with you to show progress, results, and adjustments along the way. And we end up falling in love with your brand as much as you. We all become a part of the same goal: to care for your brand and see it flourish.

Work Hard and Be Nice to People


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