This Is The Year for Proactive New Business Growth

Posted by Deltek Partner Guest Blog on April 15, 2021

Agency Image

There’s a lot to be said about what we all just experienced, and in many ways are still experiencing, after the year 2020. The last year has pushed many agencies to take a harder look inward in order to understand how they are going to thrive in 2021.

We recently connected with Matt Chollet, President of Catapult, a lead generation consultancy and sales lead provider to creative agencies, to understand the agency new sales environment and where agencies should focus their efforts. Below is an overview of the key takeaways from the recent webinar with Adweek.

There’s a lot to be said about what we all just experienced, and in many ways are still experiencing, after the year 2020. The last year has pushed many agencies to take a harder look inward in order to understand how they are going to thrive in 2021.

At Catapult, our firm belief is that 99% of agencies that find themselves in a revenue hole, can climb out of that hole with a true proactive ABM (Account Based Marketing) new business approach. 

Why do we believe this? Well let’s first look at the market that we exist within. We know that consumer confidence continues to rise steadily, albeit somewhat slowly during the tail end of Q1. We know that there is consistently increasing optimism about big brand budgets expanding amid an expectation that industries like travel, tourism, dining, and retail will all have a bounce back year. This collective optimism from both the individual consumers and brands means that brands are more likely to start spending again in increasing amounts. That increase in spend means more agency projects and reviews by Q3 & Q4 of this year.

The big opportunity here for agencies is that the way a brand spends in 2021 is almost certainly going to be very different from how they spent in 2020, or even pre-COVID 2019. Brands are looking for new ways to get the most out of every dollar because their consumers are now purchasing and interacting with their brands in very different ways. These new interactions demand that brands evaluate their current agency relationships and establish new ones that align with their evolving consumer base.

This review of agencies is happening every day at a project level, which opens the doors for agencies both big and small. A proper new business strategy that gets your firm in front of brands early and does it in a way that provides value and interest can mean that your agency is the one building the RFP with them, rather than replying to RFPs with the masses. There’s another reason we feel optimistic that brands are open to talk, and it’s in this image below.

Adweek chart resized

In Q4 of 2020, Adweek conducted the Intelligence Survey regarding how brands reviewed the performance of their agency partners. When you look at it, there’s a pretty positive story overall for our performance as an industry. I mean 80% of brands said they got what they expected or better.  Only 20% did worse. That means 20% of brands are certainly out there shopping, but where proactive conversations are so important is that huge grey section of 48% of clients that said, “they did what was expected”. “Did what they expected” does not sound like someone in love with his or her partners and are ready to get married. We are guessing they are willing to date around or see what’s out there. At the very least have a nice socially distanced chat about the ever-changing environment they are facing daily.

This is where proactivity makes all the difference. Those brands aren’t shopping right now, but they are listening and open. If your agency is putting a true proactive, account based marketing approach to your new business efforts, we know these brands are willing to listen and talk about their efforts this year because they need a partner to help them through this changing market.

 

This Is The Year For Proactive Agency New Business Growth


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In order to produce proactive meetings at scale, with an account-based approach, you are going to need both a proper tech stack in order to work quickly and an intelligent process to utilize that tech in a way that produces results.

Recently we ran a webinar in which you can see the varied tech stack that we use at Catapult, in order to amplify our outbound efforts, as well as our overall workflow of an Account Based strategy, included in the picture below.

Adweek ABM Chart resized

The model above is one in which we know will drive opportunities with your most sought after brands. It takes you from the initial contact data pull to the refinement of that data via intent identification and matching, through the re-identification process, with a final finish into (and out of) a marketing email tool. And with the amount of those opportunities increasing in Q3 and Q4 of this year as confidence increases, Q2 is the perfect time to implement a proactive new business strategy.  

It’s never easy to make a big change in how you do business, but this simple mindset and process shift can make all the difference in how you finish 2021. Please listen to the webinar, where we expand on the reasons to be bullish about agency new business, cover the importance of account-based marketing and review a list of tools to help the process run smoothly.


About the Author: Matt Chollet, President, Catapult

Matt works alongside agencies to help implement repeatable new business processes that generate qualified conversations with their most sought-after prospects. Agencies typically work with Matt and his team when they can’t wait for referrals and need to drive revenue now. 

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