Within a period of only a matter of months in 2015, brand owners including Procter & Gamble, Unilever, L’Oréal, Volkswagen, Johnson & Johnson and more all called reviews of the US and global media planning and buying arrangements.
The total value of media business that was put up for grabs was estimated to be as much as $30 billion and it threw the agency world into disarray.
If market predictions are anything to go by, 2017 is going to be an even crazier year for media pitches.
Meet David Indo, co-founder of ID Comms, a strategic consultancy that advises and guides brands through the pitch process. Ahead of his talk at the Festival of Media MENA in Dubai, where he will talk about the pitch process, he gives out his quick Dos and Don’ts for media agencies.
What to DO in a media pitch
- Be selective in your pitches
There is a tendency for agencies to accept every pitch and they hedge their bets. However tempting this may seem, this will hurt you eventually. The problem occurs when your resources are spread too thin, and the client will immediately be able to tell whether your agency is committed to that particular review or not.
- Be prepared for a media review
Agencies need to invest their time and resources in preparing for a [media] review. When you’ve selected your pitch, prepare. Research the company and understand the stakeholders. It’s easy to spot the agencies that have focused their efforts and are rigorously prepared.
- Build a rapport with the brand at the first meeting
The most important meeting is the first time a client meets a prospective agency. The most successful agencies are those that build a cultural connection with the brand at the very first meeting itself. The client will instinctively judge whether they want to work with your agency or not. Too often, agencies wait until the final presentation to show their best side. And while that may not lose you the pitch, making an impression at the start can help you win it.
What NOT to do in a media pitch?
- Misjudge the client
[It] comes down to not having prepared well enough for what the client wants. Most blunders happen when agencies get the pitch data wrong or cast the wrong people for their media pitch. Find out who will be assessing your performance, so you cast the right people.
- Flub the pitch by not understanding the client’s needs
Understand what the [client’s] triggers are … and culturally what [they] want. Research your client, and know what they’re looking for. Agencies spend a significant amount of money on redesigning the agency and creating amazing collateral to impress the client, but this doesn’t always work. If it’s a financial services brand, then be considerate of where you spend your money. But if it’s a cosmetics company, the approach may not be so understated.