A new CMO Challenge survey from Kelton Research shows that chief marketing officers are relying more heavily on agencies than ever before to help with critical corporate communication strategies. Today's marketing executive is looking for a collaborative partner, and seem to be finding that with smaller, more dedicated agencies. 

A top priority, according to respondents, is an agency that pushes for change. Companies are looking for innovation, and want to be challenged by their agencies. Instead, many of the respondents feel that they are the ones pushing change with only three percent feeling that their agencies are leading the charge. 

What is more important to a CMO - cost or agency reputation? Actually, it's neither according to this report. Instead, it's the results that count. In fact over twice as many (34 percent) of the executives believe that ability to execute is more important than cost (15 percent), and much more important (five percent) than the agencies brand or reputation. 

Over two thirds (68 percent) stated that they would prefer to work with a smaller agency that has a more intimate feel. They are seeking closer partnerships with their agencies and believe that results will be greater with a more dedicated partnership approach. 

With almost three quarters (72 percent) of the executives surveyed stating that they believe that agencies will become even more valuable in the coming years, and with time and budget constraints dictating a "pay for results" type of collaboration, Trylon SMR's approach to strategic media relations appears to be vindicated.