Flash Report @ AgencyFinder – October 25, 2006
1. Have it Your Way @ AgencyFinder.com
2. Client Testimony & an Enlightening Agency Essay
3. When is a Lead Not a Lead?
HAVE IT YOUR WAY @ AGENCYFINDER.COM
This year’s InfoCommerce theme was “Becoming One with Your Market.” It’s the concept that speaks to an increased level of engagement, connection and understanding with your marketplace. That resonated with me, at least from the “agency new business development” perspective. Here’s what I mean.
Prior to founding agencyfinder.com, my colleagues and I taught new business process, technique and best-practices to ad agencies, direct marketing, public relations and marketing firms of all types throughout North American and even in Europe. I’m talking first about all forms of pro-active outreach (mailing, calling, mailing & calling again, publicity, public speaking, seminars, special events &
parties) to touch and invite prospects so you could ask “would it make sense to get together and meet?” Then I’m talking about what to do when they say “Yes!” Things like the agency tour, benefits testing, focus groups, custom pitch presentations and/or whatever it took to invite, to entice and to close that account and make it yours.
All that experience, that wealth of knowledge resides within the AgencyFinder model and our staff. But in retrospect, maybe we’ve been pushing a bit, maybe we’ve taken too much for granted, assumed you knew all that about us, and maybe we falsely assumed you already possessed the new business basics yourself – when we should have asked first.
Everyone here has the sincere desire to be “one with our market” (you – our old and our recently registered friends), so I’m asking you to tell us what you’d like from us. Fundamentally, we’re a match-maker; eHarmony of the ad industry and all that. Our objective is to pair up great clients with great agencies. We’d like every agency in the database to have at least one substantial new client each year. But in our passion to do that, maybe we’ve missed the obvious. That’s why I ask. Tell me what you want, and I promise your suggestions will be welcome and carefully considered. CLIENT TESTIMONY & AN ENLIGHTENING AGENCY ESSAY
Testimonials are the bane of many ad campaigns. We don’t solicit them, and I personally feel that one after another is boring and suspect. This one though seems to cover what tends to concern most clients. Enjoy.
“I can tell you that using agencyfinder.com turned out to be much more than finding an ad agency. It streamlined the process, for sure, and by placing our needs only in front of candidates with the best overall fit for our company it eliminated the hours and headaches involved in false starts. Beyond that, though, the process you laid out was the genesis for discussions that clearly defined our direction and made the choices far easier, because it established tangible benchmarks to gauge the capabilities of each agency against our objectives. Without that, it would be difficult, as every agency in your database was very competent and knowledgeable. I can’t thank you enough.”
Michael Zepponi, Agri-Com Capital, Red Bluff, CA
Our agencies write essays to share their thoughts in seven topic areas (we could publish a book!) but I selected to share this one that offers great advice for everyone.
The Essay Topic – Culture (from our friends at BuderEngel & Friends, San Francisco, CA)
Build on each other’s ideas.
Help each other.
Particularly when you’re not asked to.
Demand more of yourself first;
then of others.
Try something different.
Listen some more.
Enjoy each other.
Respect each other.
Listen some more.
Respect those for
whom we create
Enjoy your craft.
Listen some more.
better than it was.
Make yourself better
than you were.
WHEN IS A LEAD NOT A LEAD?
In our last agency newsletter we posted this: “Agencies that get our invitations frequently thank us for the “lead.” But we’re looking for a better word. Leads come in various forms, but in the sales sense, a lead is the suggestion (based on some degree of fact) that a prospect may be interested or looking for a particular good or service. But the typical lead is not pre-qualified, tested, perfected, validated or consulted in depth. Our invitations are far more than leads. When the agencies were invited to pitch Wal-Mart, did they thank the consultant for the “lead?” I don’t think so. The industry needs a new word – any thoughts?” (breaking news – unconfirmed, but the press reports Wal-Mart went to DraftFCB)
We received some interesting suggestions, a few among them included “qualop” (a qualified or quality business opportunity) from Mike Scott with Vox Medica, Inc.; “Certified Pre-Owned Clients” from Gerard Miron with Miron Communications; but in our opinion, the winner for now is “Introductions.” Thanks to Walter Ohlman of Penny/Ohlmann/Neiman, Inc. in Columbus, OH. Walter points out the obvious. Nobody introduces someone unless they are willing to endorse, to refer, to affirm. Our’s are NOT leads; they are
Introductions. Referrals, recommendations, acknowledgements, affirmations. In the introductions we make, we speak “for you, on your behalf,” and we love it when you make us proud, and so it is…
Charles G. Meyst, Chairman/CEO
Business Partnering International, Ltd.
Vantage Place, 4327 Cox Road
Glen Allen, VA 23060