Creating AR Agility and Cash Flow for your Agency’s Happily Ever After

Nicole Dwyer
Agencies and Media

You’re used to good story-telling. It’s your job. Whether it’s a 45 second Facebook video ad or an Insta post pitching product, a good story brings the world together.

And you’re used to massive market disruption. It’s sometimes at the heart of great stories and certainly, you’re no stranger to it in business. In the advertising and media agency world, you have a front row seat to how topsy-turvy the world is right now. 

While some businesses are shutting down the lights and locking doors - possibly forever - others are seeing an unprecedented demand for their products and services. As an agency, you’re likely seeing both.

Pre-Covid-19, you already faced a complex business. Today, urgency is added to it.

Market disruption, digital innovation and old-fashioned customers

With the onslaught of new digital channels, your business has to be prepared to deliver more content faster than ever, and across all channels. Your teams have to learn fast, produce fast, and iterate even faster, for customer success. Your success is contingent on your next big win, not the one you just delivered. You create, you innovate, and you position your customers for stardom.

But the innovation in new digital marketing channels doesn’t mean that your customers are also investing in new payment channels. 

Many of your customers still follow traditional payment methods - check and wire - and in your industry it is not uncommon for past due AR to be outstanding up to 180 days. That’s half a year. And that’s a lot of money trapped in your AR balance sheet, rather than flowing through your business for reinvestment and growth.

For those of you who are facing such slow payment cycles, refactoring is a common tool. It’s not ideal, but at least it gets invoices paid - eventually. While refactoring takes the pain and effort out of chasing down payment from your customers, it also takes a chunk out of your actual invoice. Refactoring interest rates go as high as 24% in your industry. Ouch.

And then along came Coronavirus

The introduction of Covid-19 into our economy has several effects on the agency world. For some, it’s a devastating loss of business as an already volatile cash flow runs dry. For others, demand for services has skyrocketed because they are tied to industries who are thriving right now, such as streaming services and online gaming.

In all cases, agencies must somehow find their way from their shelter-in-place locations. New ways to collaborate with teams and clients, new processes for designing storyboards and reviewing project components, and new ways for running the business overall.

Including the back office.

Happily ever after in the back office

In addition to finding new ways to serve your clients, you have to run your agency in a more distributed fashion than before. Your back office teams - finance, compliance, legal and IT - also must find ways to keep going. While you might survive bumps in your operations in some of these areas, one department you can’t afford to overlook is the one more responsible for your cash flow: AR.

Cloud-based automation tools are no longer a nice-to-have upgrade for your business. Smart tools for smart AR is a necessity. A cloud-based platform means your team can access the information they need, and work through the processes they need to, from any location, at any time. 

Smart automation means your processes are streamlined, allowing your teams to work faster, more efficiently, and to reduce your past-due AR invoices. More effective collections will decrease the need for refactoring invoices, putting more cash back into your agency. This will have an immediate impact on your working capital and ability to not just survive, but thrive.  

YayPay offers smart tools for smart AR

The YayPay portal provides transparency and communications tools, so that you can stay connected with your customers and provide a better customer experience. While you are dealing with massive market disruption and constant change in your daily business, let YayPay provide a simple, streamlined way to manage your AR.

Through this portal, YayPay helps you offer a variety of payment channels. When your customers can pay you through the payment channel of their choice - ACH/wire, credit card, digital payment apps (eg. PayPal), mobile - and at the time most convenient for them, like when they are logged into your portal and reviewing their invoices, it means you’re getting paid more quickly, and more likely on time. The increase in payments means your working capital and cash flow is increased, as is your ability to reinvest in your business.

With more invoices being paid on time, your need to turn to invoice factoring is significantly reduced. This saves you money by preventing revenue leakage and decreasing interest expense. More money stays in your business.


Nicole Dwyer
About the Author

Nicole Dwyer is Chief Product Officer for YayPay, bringing more than 10 years’ experience in accounts payable and receivable technology to ensure YayPay continues to meet the needs of its customers. Having spent her entire career in commercial payments, Nicole understands high- and low-value payment systems, the complexities of how businesses pay and get paid, and has worked with distributed teams spanning the globe. She is a graduate of Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Residing in New Hampshire with her husband, daughter, and son, they spend their time outdoors and creating new adventures.

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