Guest Commentary By Tom Lucas
Director of Marketing & Communications, UKTV
Don’t Sell Yourselves
- A confession: Most of us clients get quite bored sitting through credentials presentations.
- We’d rather talk about ourselves. Or make sure you understand what we’re looking for.
- The best way to win our business is to take a greater interest in and ask more questions about our problems than anyone else.
- Listen as if for a pin to drop.
Be Externally Referenced
- Spot new stuff and tell us about it.
- Most of us are profoundly uncool. We spend evenings feeding babies, and watching telly with Simon Cowell in it.
- Put your army of hipsters to work. Cross pollinate the learnings from your clients.
- Expose us to the great stuff you’ve seen at Cannes. Buy us the D&AD Annual.
- Help us dare to be cooler.
Know Your Limits
- Not every business problem is a communications brief.
- Sometimes we clients get desperate, and outsource the problem to someone we can kick if it goes wrong.
- If you don’t think you can help- tell us. We’ll respect you in the morning.
Get An Education
- Clients invariably know their business. Some will pretend to know yours.
- Be flattered by their interest and try to harness it.
- Make room for them on your team’s training courses. Watch and critique ideas with them. Invest time and energy in them.
- But insist on reciprocity. Expose your team to the best thinking in their category. Infiltrate their training plan. Learn with them.
Surround Yourselves With Clients
- Get in there. Spend time in client organisations. Nothing endears like seeing your agency working alongside you- especially after hours.
- It’s so much quicker- and more fun, when you’re in the same room.
- Meet the rest of the team. Researchers, commercial teams, lawyers- there is so much to learn from them. And you never know when you might need an ally.
Get In Step
- Know your client’s planning cycle. Find out when he submits his budgets. When he reviews the year. When he gets appraised by his boss.
- Have the competitive review ready- because when businesses need information, they don’t issue much advanced warning.
- Free up resources in advance. Be there for your client.
Look for Part two of A Brief Guide next week, or join our easy and spam-free subscription to Art & Business of Motion here.
A special thanks to Tom for his contribution to the blog.