Standing out among the endless barrage of ad agency prospecting is an increasing challenge for business development pros. To capture the attention of a new prospect, the odds are significantly increased when the message is personally relevant, adds value and solves a problem.
Claiming to get outstanding results is no different than every other agency. Highlighting a business-oriented approach means nothing. Showing off awards doesn’t do it either. I asked marketers to tell me their number one preference for what they want to know about a new agency resource. I wanted to hear it directly from them. I just completed a survey of over 150 marketers representing companies small to large and brands in both B2B and B2C industries.
Marketers are pretty clear about what they are interested in.
- Personally relevant: expertise in their industry and expertise with their audience
- Adds value: want to know about new technologies or techniques that can impact their success
- Solves a problem: want to know successes in their business and fresh creative ideas in their category
A few marketer comments:
- If I don’t immediately hear my challenges, my customers, my problems, you’ve lost me.
- I don’t have time for chit-chat. Show me how you can help me. Give me something of value to know you by
- Your agency is not relevant to me. Make it so
Showing client work that isn’t specific to their industry, detailing proprietary approaches or processes, flashing awards and clever agency positioning all rank at the bottom of the marketer’s list. But for some reason, these are the things that often stand out in agency messages.
I would enjoy hearing your thoughts or disagreement. I’ll be posting more insights from the research so stay tuned. The more we share and collaborate, the smarter and more successful we will all be. After all, new business is the future of your agency.
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