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What does pitching means? : 

What does pitching means? Pitching is a process of competitive selection of advertising agencies by clients. When firms want to outsource their advertising duties to agencies, they call for pitching wherein all short listed agencies present their thoughts on how to take the brand forward. The most appealing presentation finally gets selected by the client to handle its brand communication duties

Reason why a client could be ready for a pitch : 

Reason why a client could be ready for a pitch They are expanding business with great plans and need a better partner to aid their growth They need a full-service communication partner and not just an advertising agency They want to be in the big league Their current agency has out grown them and is looking for bigger billings

Pitches can happen as follows : 

Pitches can happen as follows Proactive pitching : When an agency takes the lead in contacting a prospect Reactive pitching: Which is in response to the client contacting the agency

The Proactive Pitching Process : 

The Proactive Pitching Process Identifying the crack team Generating leads Finding the right contact Establishing the contact Opening the doors First client meeting Subsequent meetings

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Research Evolution of the agency and strategy brief Briefing the relevant internal departments Assimilating the output Finalizing the presentation Pitch presentation meeting Follow up The post -result period

Identifying the crack team : 

Identifying the crack team The success & failure of an agency's new business initiative depends on the team they handpick . Different agencies apply different models for the same Some agencies have a separate new business department Some agencies assign teams by rotation Some agencies identify a crack team from across their agency and normally make variations at the middle and junior level.

Generating leads : 

Generating leads This is the most important and toughest part of the entire process Getting to know which client could be pitch due requires huge networking Agencies are constantly devising new methods to get inside information about the key prospects All-in-all the key lies in identifying the correct prospect

Finding the right contact : 

Finding the right contact Once the agency has identified a prospect, it begins the exercise of finding the right person to contact. Getting information about key people is difficult After identifying the right person its imperative to know his equation with the current agency (A close friend of the head , last person to lend you a sympathetic ear)

Establishing the contact : 

Establishing the contact Contacting a cold prospect requires tremendous dexterity and tact Ideally the cold call is made by someone in the higher echelons to lend a sense of importance and urgency to the call The attempt is to open a window of opportunity by extracting a meeting

Opening the doors : 

Opening the doors Wooing process starts Some agencies have been known to chase clients for years before extracting a meeting Approximately 80-90% cold calls fails generate a meeting Creative approaches starts (Sending extremely creative we want you desperately mailers to a desirable client for three months to break down client s resistance to their unwarranted pitch)

First client meeting : 

First client meeting Reaching this stage is half the battle won Agencies presents their credentials Attempts is to extract brief from the client or at least some of the issues client faces This is the best time to ask as many questions as possible

Subsequent meetings : 

Subsequent meetings Largely relationship building Seeking clarifications , Sharing thoughts

Research : 

Research This is the starting point or foundation of putting together a good pitch effort Client provides a broad perspective Agency conduct research Agencies employ all kind of research (Observation , Qualitative etc..)

Evolution of the agency strategy and brief : 

Evolution of the agency strategy and brief This forms the basic backbone of the agency effort The search is for the ideal and most creative approach to tackling the issue at hand Core groups get together to assimilate information and insights gathered in the research Evolve what is termed as strategy and from there the briefs

Slide 16: 

There are no ground rules for strategy evolution apart from doing intensive research work The rest depends on the expertise of the core group

Briefing of the relevant internal departments : 

Briefing of the relevant internal departments Too many cooks spoil the broth Briefing to all the various departments and decisions should happen simultaneously The briefing should be done in such a way that every member of the orchestra has under stood the whole symphony and his role in the concert

Assimilating the output : 

Assimilating the output Ensure that all the team members are on track and are moving in the right direction The process of assimilating the research , information , the strategy and the various discipline / department solutions should start well in time. The support teams should be given responsibility of putting together their pieces together in a certain form for integration and customization into the combined presentation

Finalizing the presentation : 

Finalizing the presentation The presentation plays a key role Agencies use their best presentation writers to craft a smart and intelligent presentation Technology is used widely Hectic preparations are frayed nerves are typical at this stage This is also the stage where the heads of the agency or the division in charge review and help improve the final output

Pitch presentation meeting : 

Pitch presentation meeting Some agencies have been known to have a talent pool of the best presenters who are invoked at such crucial junctures Painstaking effort goes into planning the meeting from the venue to the people who attend from the agency , presenters , the chronology ,the seating order ,the experience etc. While planning creative attempts -the presentation is at a venue controlled by the agency

Slide 21: 

The creativity should not end up becoming a gimmick The innovation is impactful if there are no howlers

Follow-up : 

Follow-up Some times life gives you another chance Follow up exercise could prove to be a new lease of life for an agency that may not be the top contender. Some agencies send across follow up documents , short snippets , etc...

The post result period : 

The post result period Clients normally call up agencies in the fray to announce the final decision The agency that wins signs the contract The final work that sees the light of the day is vastly different from the pitch solutions

Reactive pitching : 

Reactive pitching The process normally starts with the client calling up the agency to come and pitch for their business

Reactive pitch process : 

Reactive pitch process Remembering the brief that came from the client Leaving a good impression Making the presentation interesting Keeping to the limit time Anticipating the clients' questions Treating the young people at the clients end end equally well

Conclusion : 

Conclusion Competition is healthy, in that it stimulates growth, promotes creativity,& encourages training, However it is important that the competitiveness be directed to constructive development and not lead to "unwarranted disruption of productive agency-client relationships,

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