I’ve been told I’m a rarity because I have chosen to make a career out of new business. Most people can’t last 2 hours doing this stuff… I’ve lasted over 12 years and I simply love it.
While I won’t give all my secrets away, I’d thought I’d take the time to share a few ‘wisdoms’ that I’ve developed along the way which I think are important for any agency no matter if you are big or small.
1.) Rule #1: New Business should be an agency function, not a person or department.
2.) New Business is like dating -- first time you meet her don’t talk about yourself the whole time or she’ll never call you back.
3.) Take the time to understand who you are [as an agency] and make sure you believe in what you’ re selling.
4.) Do your homework. Here’s a great client quote that I often refer to, “Demonstrate how you can move my business. Give me insight or a great idea. Show me that you understand what I do.”
5.) Remember in pitch situations, clients are looking for reasons to disqualify you. I once saw a RFP returned with red proofreaders marks on the mistakes. Spell-check + proofread everything. Twice. (You’d be amazed at how many people don’t.)
Most of all -- keep your eyes open for opportunities at all times, everywhere. You need to be tenacious and persistent, and importantly -- know how to listen and respond so the client builds a lasting relationship with the brand. Yours.