How to DIY in ad agency new business, part two

OK, so part one features some basic time management techniques. You might have even read this post that actually takes a technique or two and adds some new business top spin.

These are fine ideas. But here’s a different, perhaps more interesting way of looking at how you can get things done in agency new business.

Apply the discipline and rigor of project management to new business execution
This be a lot more helpful than ye olde “divide and conquer” time management tip. But having built systems and approaches for agencies to help them execute prospecting and closing more efficiently, there are some common elements to much of this thinking:

  1. Visibility. Both in terms of what’s happening with a given pitch or prospect and the overall agency workload. Usually this is done through status reports, databases, accounting systems, or simple observation. But to me, any system has a way of looking at the bigger picture.
  2. Ownership. Someone is driving. Either leading the effort at a senior level. Or simply nudging others along to do their part. But someone is consistently acting as the new business shepherd at the agency.
  3. Measurement. Ya gotta have a baseline. A prospecting baseline typically is an increase in the number of pitches your agency earns. But you have to know how many you pitch to begin with. Might also help to know how you got ’em, right? In closing, it’s your percentage of win rate. As well as your costs to pitch the business (inside and outside costs.) But those are just for starters. A prospecting plan, for instance, can get down to the number of new and existing prospects you should be connecting with on a monthly basis to get your goals.
  4. Re-usability. We all know there’s a ton of stuff that’s pick-up that can work from pitch to pitch. I, for one, use many templates in my practice. But they always are JUST THE BEGINNING, of course. Systems to get things done need the same thing. It’s got to be repeatable.
  5. Appetite for improvement. For one Thunderclap agency, after each pitch I would write a good-bad-ugly document about our process, identifying ways to ratchet up our efficiency.

Need a little more inspiration? Check this out – the wikipedia definition of project management. It can get your brain thinking about how to design a simple, repeatable process that will help execute your new business plan. Happy execution.