Looking for the silver bullet for agency new business efforts? I could sell a great new business person to agency owners all day long. They don't just want one -- they hunger for one. In fact, they're so hungry for that killer salesperson that they'll gladly pay a premium salary and perks to 8-10 losers before they find someone who can even cover their own salary. And that's just for the privilege of breaking even. Hardly a home run in the agency new business efforts World Series. In a recent new Agency-Marketer Business Report from RSW/US, 80 percent of agency respondents said the tenure of their new business director was two years or less. And (my editorial, not the study's) it was a very frustrating and expensive 2 years at that. Adweek covered the story and concurred with the study's findings. They had quotes from some of the bog box agencies and even a client or two who said agency new business people didn't get their business issues. I know it's a different world when you're JWT or Saatchi, but in the world of most privately owned agencies -- agency owners have two choices: You can gamble on finding/hiring someone who has incredible sales skills AND can talk marketing/business problems with prospects You can get over yourself and accept what you know but don't want to hear. The best new business person in your agency is you. I can't tell you how many times I have been in a conversation with a new business agency owner who said "for XYZ reason, I had to step into the new business role and we are killing it! We've got 5 proposals out and we've already increased AGI 20% over last year." The reality [...]
Is there such a thing as a loyal client? I think we all know a few. But the truth is, most agencies hang onto a client for 3-5 years and then they're looking around. If we're really honest with ourselves -- some of the blame for that disenchantment sits at our feet. When we're chasing a new piece of business, we are on our first date behavior. We listen intently, respond instantaneously and we go out of way to be smart, witty and a snappy dresser. We wine and dine them, literally and figuratively and no one matters more. But once the deal is done... over time, we get a little sloppy. It doesn't matter if the work you're doing for them is digital, traditional or a blend. We don't wine or dine very often anymore. I know, I know -- you're busy doing the work and they should know that you still love them because you're busting a hump for them. There's more to keeping your clients loyal than just working hard. Agency Post asked me to explore this topic and offer up some advice on how to nurture your accounts so at the end of the day you can earn a great profit and a loyal client. Check out my article How to Stop Your Clients from Shopping Around. I'd love to get your take on this topic.