.bone Advertising member of VEA

.bone Advertising is the first online advertising agency to become a member of the Association of Communication Consultancy Agencies (VEA). The management of .bone sees this as confirmation of a successful company mission. But the VEA appears to have applied the entry requirements smoothly. How easy is it to become a member of this prestigious club

.bone Advertising is the first online advertising agency to become a member of the Association of Communication Consultancy Agencies (VEA). The management of .bone sees this as confirmation of a successful company mission. But the VEA appears to have applied the entry requirements smoothly. How easy is it to become a member of this prestigious club?

"No, our stationery remains the same, the VEA logo does not match our corporate identity", says creative director Koen Verhagen of .bone Advertising. His office has finally been admitted into the ranks of 128 VEA-recognized communication agencies after almost a year of lobbying. No small feat. Until now, no independent online advertising agency had succeeded. "It is a confirmation of our way of working", says Verhagen. Membership offers .bone a lot of prestige, according to Verhagen not unimportant in the current market. Conversely, .bone is now supposed to operate according to VEA standards and values.

Becoming a member of the VEA is not easy. Prospective members must meet more than ten requirements. Most of them insist on the nature of the office activities and the independence of the clients. Furthermore, interactive legs from larger agencies can not become a member. An example is Atmosphere, which is part of FHV / BBDO. Poor bureaus are not welcome, the annual income must be at least one million guilders. To this end, the VEA sends an accountant home to do research in the books. More striking is the required experience. An agency must have existed for at least three years when the application is being processed, a decreasing problem for young interactive agencies.

Nevertheless, the VEA is prepared to hand over the heart in special cases and to reduce the period to one year, "if the management of the office has already earned its spurs as such". Frans Blanchard, director of the VEA, appears to have used this opt-out rule for .bone. The agency applied for membership a year ago, while it did not exist for two years at that time. What was the motivation to relax the rules? Blanchard: "We found that in other areas than the traditional communications sector, the world turned out to be a bit faster, and on that basis we decided to reduce the period to two years." We first had a policy whereby we allowed prospective members from the moment that they had been set up, such a bureau had to prove itself in three years, and we have come back to that. " According to Verhagen, the VEA has come to the conclusion that one offline year equals three internet months.

Nevertheless, it seems that the VEA has relaxed the rules because the organization is shy about new members (and contribution funds). For example, Blanchard admits that companies that operate in a niche are also welcome in the future. An aspiring communication advice agency no longer needs to be at home in all markets. It should best deal exclusively with sub-areas such as direct marketing, sponsoring and labor market communication. Blanchard says this year even with Lost Boys and Strawberries, both web builders pur sang, to have talked about a future membership. At the same time, he states that building a website is "something different than communicating with customers".

Postscript:
The VEA emphasizes in a reaction that interactive parts of advertising agencies can indeed become a full VEA member, even if the parent company is not a member. Bone is the first independent online advertising agency that has obtained membership. Furthermore, the prospective membership for starting agencies has not been stopped. This policy has just been introduced very recently and companies such as .bone must lead through the application procedure more quickly.