Cutting through the noise to attract big brands

Agency new business is similar to a dating game. It’s about making that brand feel special, nurturing the relationship and putting your best assets forward. 

In episode 7 of Word on the Street, Katie heads to New York, to interview Footlocker’s VP of Marketing, Richard McLeod about what large brands expect from agency relationships and how they can work better together. 

Richard and Katie discuss: 

  • How Footlocker have been navigating unprecedented times
  • Marketing in the UK vs USA
  • Approaching brands and cutting through the noise
  • Defining your agency purpose
  • The future of retail

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Links & references

Katie Street:

Street Agency:

Richard McLeod:


Get in touch: [email protected]

Episode highlights

“There’s a fine balance between trying to sell during a time where there’s a lot of unrest and unknowns and we have to be really careful with how we engage with the consumer” Richard McLeod – 12:11

“I see agencies as broader partners to help us sense check and drive greater strategy overall.” Richard McLeod – 17:20

“Agency’s should have a diverse point of view and provide expertise and knowledge that are able to help the overall brand.” Richard McLeod – 18:10

“I’m adamant that agency’s should have people at varying levels that look like the consumer and are able to think like the consumer we’re trying to engage with” Richard McLeod – 18:42

“They want to hear good ideas from agencies. Although case studies are important, you don’t want to go “Hey look at this great work we did” instead you should say “we’ve got this fantastic idea, plus we’ve done some similar stuff and we think this would work really well for you.” Katie Street – 20:30

“I struggle with agency’s who try and sell the fact that they can do everything. Be good at one or two things and do that meaningfully and purposely.” Richard McLeod – 21:23

“I want agency’s who are committed to our business. My pet peeve is when the account team is nothing like the people you saw in the pitch or meeting you were buying from” Richard McLeod – 22:52

“The other challenge is that a lot of brands are training their own internal agencies in the organisation, especially in the US. For example Pepsi have their own design agency in house. That’s certainly something that external agencies need to be mindful of.” Richard McLeod – 26:13