How to make “hurry, offer ends soon” work in ad agency new business

Hi. So, the ANA show recently ended. Let’s say you went there and chatted up a few prospects. Professional, hard-to-reach people with whom you made a positive impression. But you didn’t really establish any needs or uncover any pressing matter. How do you move things along? How can you build a sense of urgency?

It can be done. And if you are just pressing the flesh and hoping that something will happen… Well, hope don’t pay the rent.

Let’s get off the big agency high horse and get real. Or, should you be in another professional service industry, let’s put some scuffs on those white shoes and crisp, expensive suits. Here are two thoughts on creating urgency in ad agency new business:

Find the urgency from their perspective, not yours. What is their competition doing? How is their company reacting? When are next year’s plans due? Their key selling season? How and what is their new product pipeline? What is their internal political situation like? What are the water cooler conversations? Knowing answers to these kinds of questions could help. And then, the next question is how you can connect your services and abilities to those answers.

Looking for some more context? Here’s what  some pretty smart professionals, the folks behind , said in one of their books:

 “The exact “so what” questions will vary depending on the situation, but your ability to quantify and paint the “so what” picture is the foundation for just how important engaging your services is to the prospective buyer. This is paramount importance to you because, as we have discussed previously, when it comes to selling professional services, your competition is often the indifference of the client, not another organization or other service provider. So, creating urgency for buying your services hinges on how well you help your client answer the “so what” question.”

Smart, huh? Add a layer of our industry-specific thinking to this, and you have something. See through the eyes of your prospect. And, by the way, this concept applies to a $2,500 dollar logo. Or a $250,000 dollar one. It also applies to just about any initial conversation you have with a prospective client.

Find outside urgency. Perhaps there’s a time-sensitive opportunity coming up. A brand partnership. Media buy. A genuine celebrity access window. You get the idea.  It feels like you may have read something like this before in this blog, so it won’t be spun out here.

Besides which, this is running long and I have got to get billable. Should you have any practices you wish to share, feel free to do so. If any of this has sparked something you’d like to urgently discuss with yours truly (because you just lost a piece of business, or you just fired your new business hand, or…) feel free to call me.