The head of account service (we’ll call him “Tom”) at a fast-moving regional agency was on a roll.

win the pitch

A winning ad agency presentation?

Tom had just closed the largest account in the history of the agency, and he was using the win to open doors on his prospect list. There was a buzz in the air, and the street was talking. Tom wanted to use the win for all its worth. But there was one prospect that Tom really wanted, and he had never been able to establish a connection. Tom had nudged with articles, connected online, followed up with some invitations to several agency functions, and even sent some new research to try and get a response. Nothing.

Then one day, at a trade show, they bumped into each other. When Tom introduced himself the prospect immediately recognized his name. The conversation was brief, but there was a connection. As the prospect started to walk away he suggested “there may be something in the works,” and “why don’t you stop by next week.”

Ad Agency Prospect Presentation

On the day of the meeting, Tom and his whole team came in looking like a million dollars. They wowed the prospect with all sorts of great thinking, wonderful ideas, and impressive results. It was a great show, a really outstanding show, the best show they had ever done. Only, after they left, the prospect did not return any of Tom’s calls.

Later they heard another agency was suddenly working with this top prospect. Without a review. Tom never even got a courtesy call. What went wrong?

Another agency came in for a first visit, followed our rules, built trust, discovered needs, did a fast close, and walked away with the account.

A year later we were in Tom’s firm doing some training when he found out about Agency Baseball. He learned exactly where they went wrong. They had mis-profiled the prospect. They had failed to build trust. They didn’t realize that capabilities presentations were for losers. When he relayed this story the pain was obvious in his voice; it still hurt. How many missed opportunities can you remember?

Start Right: Win At The First Visit

A good first visit is where your team avoids presenting capabilities but focuses on building trust so prospects will discuss their business needs openly and honestly. It’s a learned skill set called Torch. And it successfully moves the prospect toward a closing process.

If you have a good first visit, then you are prepared to move for a fast close, either in 48 hours or 7-days. The alternative, often followed by most of the industry who don’t understand the fast close process, is to wait after a first visit because nothing substantial has been set up. This forces clients to move into a formal search where competition is high. And you get to present in competition with many other firms. Why let that happen after you win a good first visit?

We’ve designed Torch to be the quickest way to improve your firm’s performance in fast closing accounts. It’s a one-stop learning experience. Intense. Thorough. And fun. Give us a call at 412.897.9329 or email us at [email protected] for more information.


Photo by radityaman