Guest blog by Andrew Thomas: Is there a difference between – winning and not losing a pitch?


Yes it’s a rhetorical question. I don’t expect an answer. You may think I don’t deserve one because both options are the same outcome, just expressed differently.

But are they?

I would argue that they are not when it comes to winning new business. Why? Let’s look at a sporting analogy. I know it’s early to be thinking about Wimbledon but consider this. What does Andy Murray have to do to win the championship? Obvious isn’t it – not lose in the first six rounds. So to win, you have to avoid losing first.

And this is equally true when we think about winning new business. It’s a truism to think that winning fixates us all and finding out what that “formula” will guarantee our success. The reality is there is no formula. Every pitch is different and the issue each client faces unique to them. Get close to the prospective client and you may get to understand it – if they reveal it as part of the briefing process – and might resolve it better than any of the other competing agencies.

Notice I used the words “may” and “might”. No guarantees then.

I would argue there is only one way to guarantee winning pitches and that’s by making sure you don’t lose. By that I mean snatching defeat from the jaws of victory or chucking it all away with moments to go. This is very easily done and I keep seeing agencies doing time and again. Great ideas coming from a sound logical argument based on real customer insight. A well-rehearsed presentation delivered impeccably. Then the wheels come off.

Sloppy brand representation, getting the client's name spelt incorrectly – Sara not Sarah, or Steven not Stephen – or referring to the Marketing Director as the Marketing Manager. All can turn a client off in an instant.

The truth is you cannot win a pitch until you make sure you have eliminated everything that could lose it for you. So impeccable attention to detail is critical. Will that mean you will win? Not necessarily but it will mean you get to the final and have the chance of winning. Then it’s up to you and the relationship you can forge with the prospect. How you set about developing better rapport and chemistry with the client team.

But that’s another story for another day…

Andrew Thomas

@thegreenfield


What experiences do you have of being involved in pitches, from either side of the fence, that lost out due to lack of the basics, such as attention to detail? It would be great to hear your stories.





Comments...

Add a comment


Name:   
Comment:   
 

Jobs we know about

Things we know are happening

  • Manchester OpenStack Meetup

    ?We are the only of the few official OpenStack user groups globally.

    27/07/2016 | SpacePortX, 1st Floor, 24 Lever Street, M1 1DZ, Manchester

    ?We are the only of the few official OpenStack user groups globally.

  • McrFRED 40 | Google Progressive Web Apps

    In case you didn’t see, McrFRED is now part of ‘Together with Google Developers.

    28/07/2016 | Spaceport X, 24/26 Lever Street, Manchester.

    In case you didn’t see, McrFRED is now part of ‘Together with Google Developers.

  • What impact has Brexit had on foreign exchange?

    Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce is hosting a Business Clinic in partnership with MoneyCorp ...

    28/07/2016 | Elliot House M3 3WD Manchester

    Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce is hosting a Business Clinic in partnership with MoneyCorp on 28th July 2016 to provide local businesses with information about the current foreign exchange environment and how they ...

  • NUX - Assumption Mapping and Managing uncertainty

    The next NUX Manchester event is Monday 1st August at our home in the office of Rentalcars.com, ...

    01/08/2016 | Rentalcars.com, 35 Fountain Street, Manchester City Centre

    The next NUX Manchester event is Monday 1st August at our home in the office of Rentalcars.com, at 35 Fountain Street, just behind Primark in Manchester City Centre.

look at all events Go to our calendarlink

Things we tweet about

  • orchardjobs - 3 hours ago

    Agile Human-Centred Project Manager / Producer in #Manchester, up to £40k. - @Orchard_Chris #agencyjobs https://t.co/bDqh235NyW

  • orchard_chris - 13 hours ago

    RT @SmartRich: Ruler Analytics to expand team following second 6-figure investment - Prolific North https://t.co/3GWWNxfqnm

  • orchard_rick - 1 day ago

    This is awesome. Olde English words that we don't use anymore: https://t.co/5Otm5wqsvE My favourite "Twattling" (gossiping or chatting idly)

  • orchard_andy - 1 day ago

    RT @Orchardtweets: Snr Web Developer / Rapid Prototyping in #Manchester, up to £40k. - @Orchard_andy #digitalrole https://t.co/LxQ5CLNPtt

  • orchardtweets - 1 day ago

    Snr Web Developer / Rapid Prototyping in #Manchester, up to £40k. - @Orchard_andy #digitalrole https://t.co/LxQ5CLNPtt

  • orchard_helen - 2 days ago

    RT @hummbrt: deepest video I've ever seen, just because it isn't happening where you live, doesn't mean it isn't happening. https://t.co/v…

  • orchard_davidh - 2 days ago

    RT @ValaAfshar: Didn't exist 12 years ago: Facebook Twitter YouTube Uber Airbnb Snapchat Instagram Fitbit Spotify Dropbox WhatsApp Nest Bo…

  • orchard_davido - 3 days ago

    @AlexJMellor How can I help?

  • orchard_rich - 3 days ago

    RT @footyawayday: Who fancies a game of Russian swamp football? https://t.co/co6bvgAxi3

  • orchard_rebecca - 4 days ago

    ahem @Orchard_Andy cough cough https://t.co/JjEEEjKANU

  • orchard_aj - 7 days ago

    RT @ow: The future is crazy. You can watch this unfold through thousands of different eyes and perspectives in just a mouse hover.

  • orchard_mike - 11 days ago

    @gabiskandar Good luck hope your new team are as good as your old one!

  • orchard_tommy - 17 days ago

    https://t.co/gIxYb9NueR

  • orchard_lucy - 38 days ago

    RT @Orchard_Helen: *Please Retweet* I have a few non-creative artworker roles on in #manchester city ctr - £20-25k please get in touch #hir…