New body for independent media agencies launched

Independent Media Agencies of Australia (IMAA) is a new, national, not for profit body with 20 founding members.

A new industry body aiming to give independent media agencies a voice has been launched.

Independent Media Agencies of Australia (IMAA) is a new, national, not-for-profit body with 20 founding members. According to the IMAA, more than 25 per cent, or $2.5 billion in advertising expenditure, is represented by independent media agencies, so a collaborative voice that supports Australian owned businesses is vital.

The IMAA’s purpose is to: Promote the benefits of working with independent media agencies, including the benefit of working directly with the owners of these agencies and their staff; build further respect for independent media agencies by promoting the experience, care and flexibility that they provide; educate advertisers about the value independent media agencies can bring to their business; promote collaboration between independent media agencies as a forum to share knowledge; create a verified platform for reputable and established independent media agencies; and build the Australian economy through supporting all Australian owned independent media agencies, meaning that money stays in Australia. 

The founding IMAA members, Dominic Pearman from Pearman Media; Ant Colreavy from Sandbox Media; Dan O’Brien from Frontier Australia; Nick Behr from Kaimera, and Sam Buchanan from McKenzie Partners, will comprise a five-member management committee for the first year. The management committee will rotate with other members annually. 

Pearman, who has taken the chairman's post, said collectively, independent media agencies act for some of Australia’s best-known brands. 

“There are many benefits for advertisers to work with independent media agencies, one of the most important being the depth and longevity of experience they provide and staff consistency and stability. We are business owners working within the business. The IMAA will provide the independent sector with a louder, unified voice to educate the industry and demonstrate the great work we do and help grow the Australian economy,” he said. 

To be eligible to join the IMAA, independent media agencies must be 100 per cent Australian owned, be in business for more than two years or must be in the industry for more than 10 years, and show evidence of respect for Australia’s media owners. Members receive a range of benefits including a formalised network of industry leaders, a code of conduct, staff training, pitch support, and IMAA certification. 

Thirteen of Australia’s media owners have pledged their support for the IMAA and will be involved in learning sessions, insights briefings and management meetings. 

“Independent media agencies pride themselves on strong, respectful and open and transparent relationships with media owners. We work collaboratively and are strong supporters of the local media market. We are delighted that 13 media owners will support the IMAA and its charter,” Pearman said. 

The IMAA has several initiatives planned which will be announced shortly.

“The main reason for this is the space is growing. Year-on-year, the independent agencies are growing in size and scale. So the MIAA aims to support agencies and communication between agencies, showcase the benefits of independents to clients, and support and showcase the financial benefits of supporting 100 per cent owned Australian businesses,” Pearman said at the launch.

Initial events will include education, and a communication program to promote issues relevant to independents by surveying them and finding out what they think. 

Nova Entertainment's Pete Charlton said at the launch that the radio station is proud to play a small part in the formation of the MIAA and in a challenging and contracted market, independent agencies are important. 

“Independent agencies have pioneering spirit, are calculated risk takers, and are obsessed with serving clients. They bring the client closer to the content we create and that’s why we should work together and be collaborative into the future,” he said.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia.

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