The word on the agency street is that most want and need new clients now, not tomorrow. But how realistic is that? That expressed urgency has everything to do with orders to sequester-in-place issued for the COVID-19 fiasco and then the ensuing riots in protest of the killing of George Floyd. Just as some states were beginning to allow phased openings, the country-wide riots frightened many people who in-turn chose not to travel for work to city-center properties or to begin shopping in ernest. The result – a continuing drag on the prospect of renewed commerce and positive agency cash-flow.
After months of deep cash-flow reductions, many agencies, even those who managed to snare some of the government’s stimulus monies, were down to spending for absolute necessities, and that didn’t initially include spending for future business development. So what’s an agency to do? Some rather lucky shops may have been cultivating opportunities during the past months and now feel comfortable working to close that business. For them that’s great. But the majority found themselves stuck in limbo; choosing not to reach out to prospects and at that same time, prospects were also “hunkered down” and constrained their research and outreach faced with an uncertain future.
OK, time to get moving! Consider these options and sequence for deployment. Options are sorted by timing and costs. Not considered are items and inventory already owned by agency. Nor is talent or training of agency individuals.
Code: Timing A-Now B-3 months C-6 months D-9 months Costs F-Free $-charge
- Agency Website content – AF
- Agency Telemarketing – AF
- Agency Email blasts – AF
- Match-Maker enrollments – AF$ i.e. AgencyFinder.com
- New Business Newspapers – Leads, espionage – A$ i.e. Ratti Report, Winmo
- Agency Website SEO & PPC – B$
- Agency Direct mail w/phone follow – B$
- Directory Listings – BF$ i.e. Clutch, AgencySpotter
- Outsourced (Third-Party) appointment setting – B$ i.e. RSW-US
- Agency Search consultant enrollments – CF i.e. See 4A’s
- Agency LinkedIn Programs – C$
- Agency Speaking engagements – CF
- Agency experiential events – C$
This rather long list illustrates the fact that agency business development is no part-time proposition nor is it for the faint-of-heart! Have at it.