The number of agency reviews launched by advertisers is rising in both Europe and the US, according to a study by AdForum.

Europe is seeing particularly high growth – in the first quarter, agency searches rose 15% compared with Q4 2002 and 11% on the same three months a year earlier.

In the US, the number of reviews rose 10% compared with the previous quarter, but fell 7% year-on-year.

The increase in such activity was partly attributed to marketers’ desire to get the best possible value for money in the current climate, seeking new agencies if necessary.

“It was apparent that advertisers were wary of making any changes at the end of last year,” commented Rob Drasin, vp–sales at Adforum. “However, since January, the level of search activity has increased, indicating both the necessity of spending new budgets as well as their will to move forward. Contrary to what was so often announced and expected, the current situation has not created much of a wait-and-see attitude among advertisers.”

Data sourced from:; additional content by WARC staff