This is one of the many questions we get when consulting with ad agencies.

reward your team for winning

Make new business a rewarding experience at your agency.

Sadly this is a problem faced by far too many agencies. It should be part of your culture already. From day one, every agency should have the love of new business baked into their DNA, where everyone on staff is excited by new business opportunities. After all, without new business coming in sooner or later your current clients will move on. And you’re out of business. They don’t call new business the lifeblood of the agency world for nothing.

There is a simple way to help build interest by getting everyone to participate in new business. Set up a new business contest called the President’s Cup for each new account the agency goes after.

Reward Your Team:

The president decides early in the new business chase to set up a President’s Cup and sets a prize amount. Recommended amounts are usually $5,000, $10,000 or $20,000, depending on the size of the account and its importance to the agency. When the account is won the team that worked on the account decides how many shares each team member gets. Some might get a fraction of a share. The person who came up with the big idea that won the business would typically get more shares.

The shares are voted. The president doesn’t vote. If the new business director is on some other incentive, then the new business director may not participate in the President’s Cup. If the team cannot come to some agreement on how to vote the shares, the president withdraws the money. No decision. No Cup.

The President’s Cup is a mature way to reward all the people at the agency who make new business possible: the ones who stay late to run copies and the ones who bring in the pizzas. But agency people are not rewarded for doing their regular jobs. It’s the President’s Cup for new business, not a general agency incentive program.

But The President’s Cup does build agency spirit for new business.

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Photo by Brad.K and used under creative commons.