For CEOs like growth consultancy agency CEO Mark Zamuner, one of the biggest challenges of the lockdown which we have been through over the course of the last 5 months has been not being able to meet clients and customers face to face, which has had a big impact on pitching. The inability to take clients out, showcase the business through events or simply to have a chat in their offices has forced ad and media agencies to get creative and to switch the focus around what they are doing when it comes to pitches, and here is how they have adapted.
Back to Basics
The ad pitch has become incredibly creative over recent years and more and more agencies are trying to be as novel as possible in order to get the better of the competition. As Mark Zamuner rightly puts it however, businesses aren’t looking out to be entertained and as he has stated “There is a greater focus on specifics, deliverables, case studies, capabilities and providing examples of output”.This has seen ad agencies take things back to basics with less razzmatazz and more focus on action and high speed performance.
Touches of Sparkle
Some ad agencies are still recognizing the need to add a smattering of creativity with their pitches, be it changing the background on their screen or sending a drink to the client which they can share on the call. The important stuff is what Mark mentioned but many agencies are still aware of the fact that there is a competition on their hands. There is a need to do something to make up for the lack of body language and feeling which you can convey when you are in a room with someone, something that just doesn’t come across through a computer screen.
More and more companies are looking to create great content such as pre-made videos which they can use as part of their pitch, and this has now taken on far more importance than it ever has. Previously videos and graphic displays were still used but not in the way that we are seeing them presented at the moment. This now forms a far larger percentage of the pitch.
The conditions around how we go about getting more business has changed, much in the way advertising has with regards to the sentiment and the mood of any pitch. The last thing a struggling business which has just furloughed staff needs is a pitch which is trying to make light of the situation, so gauging mood is something far more important than it has ever been. A slight misjudgment and the essence of the whole pitch could be lost, this requires more careful planning and more empathy within the pitch than anyone would normally have considered.
The changes which have been made around pitches could very well be something that we see continuing into the future, rather than a click of the fingers and everything back to normal, as the truth is there is no definitive end to all of this.