Why Agencies Can’t Compete With On-Demand Design

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As technology adoption continues to accelerate, marketers are under intense scrutiny to produce and justify their marketing investments. Today’s marketers must be more nimble than ever to succeed.

Long gone are the days when it was OK to produce one new content piece per month. Today that would mean disaster — with competitors out marketing you based on sheer volume. To succeed in digital marketing in 2018, marketers have to not only be strategic, but execute on great creative.

Good Design, Good Business

With design evolving from an operative to strategic function that generates significant ROI, marketing teams need great design on a daily basis. Campaigns today have fragmented into small pieces customized by channel. Presentations, case studies, and even blog articles like this one require custom images that reinforce your point and represent the company’s brand.

Not understanding that this everyday design work is fundamentally different, creative agencies are often invited to step in and help with design process. Too often, they fail. Agencies specialize in flagship projects. Their clients aim to create comprehensive go-to-market plans and position themselves with creative marketing. They are a strategic solution that’s priced as such.

Visual design agencies didn’t evolve in this new “always-on” marketplace. They grew up before our digital transformation, and excel at highly creative solutions or large ad campaigns — not the smaller, yet essential, day-to-day design work.

To compete and win in today’s always-on global economy, you need a a solution that’s available on-demand.

On-demand vs The Agency

So, you’re a marketer or executive needing a creative solution for your company. You’re comparing SketchDeck to an agency for creative work. At first pass, the pricing and setup might seem similar. After all — if you’re paying monthly for a recurring design engagement, you may expect to see similar results.

But dig bit deeper and you’ll see that’s not the case. An agency’s monthly agreement, typically called a “retainer”, is massively more expensive than SketchDeck’s membership fee. A design agencies minimum engagement costs tens of thousands of dollars.

SketchDeck is not an agency. We help companies solve different problems. Our clients need help with their day-to-day design, putting brand and content in the driver’s seat. We ensure that every single piece of collateral is on-brand, no matter how large or small.

With SketchDeck, you don’t need to commit any budget in order to place projects — create a free account and place a project anytime. For members who’d like additional benefits like an account management setup, memberships start at just $500 per month.

For the setup, a SketchDeck membership provides access to our technology platform, supported by a dedicated account team. Marketers can offload project management work to SketchDeck, freeing up time to work on their core skill and job duties: marketing and growth.

From pricing to speed, speed to teams, teams to technology and beyond — SketchDeck is an entirely different beast. We are the on-demand design solution.

Design Isn’t A Destination — It’s A Journey

Often it’s not the best idea that wins, it’s the fastest to market. So an important criteria that marketers consider is, “When can you get this design back to me by?” For speed, there’s simply no comparison between an agency and SketchDeck. Agencies can take weeks or even months on project turnaround, whereas SketchDeck can get a quality first draft to all parties for review in a matter of hours or days.

To borrow an old cliché; design isn’t a destination — it’s a journey. That’s a fact. You need a design partner who will be there for you for a marathon, not just a sprint. Before the digital transformation, this used to be supported by an “Agency of Record” system. One agency would contract with a company to take all of their design work.

Today, as technology continues to evolve and move even faster, this system has become obsolete. More often than not, the agency model locks a company into something they simply don’t need. With SketchDeck you get the best elements of technology, paired with talented creatives. The result? The flexibility and agility your organization needs to win in today’s competitive marketplace.

Agency vs SketchDeck comparison

How to work with SketchDeck

Looking to quickly and easily create a presentation, case study, social advertisement, or other project? Don’t use an agency. SketchDeck is the clear choice. In fact, more than 1700 brands, including Salesforce, Okta and Icertis trust SketchDeck to complete their everyday design needs.

There are two ways you can get started today:

#1: Start a project! Click here to create an account and view the selection of starter projects on our digital shelf. The whole process will take about five minutes. You’ll receive a quote and timeline estimate. If you get lost, we have in-app chat to speak with a design specialists.

#2: Start a conversation with our talented team! Either give us a call at (408) 809-5477, or click here to schedule time directly on our calendar. We can talk you through the specifics of completing your project and help you understand the benefits of a SketchDeck membership.


Finally, if you’re feeling a bit shy, uncertain, or just enjoy short videos — click here to watch a demo of working with SketchDeck. In two minutes, you’ll see how to work with the app to place a project, give design feedback, and how we help you create a final product.

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