Monday, February 6, 2012

Don't pitch like Madonna's halftime show

Maybe I need a break from new business pitches because I am starting to see parallels in the most peculiar places. The most recent parallel was in last night's Super Bowl Halftime show.

It seemed as if Madonna, in an effort to be FCC-friendly and inclusive, strayed from her irreverent style and settled smack dab in the middle of mediocrity. In an effort to make the show less lame, she added Trojan warriors, a high-tech stage, LMFAO, Cee Lo Green and M.I.A. All of which made the show busier but no less interesting. How often are the advertising equivalent of Trojan warriors added to your pitch? The result is the same... a busier, but no more compelling pitch.

Just like bells and whistles don't make a boring halftime show any less boring, those same bells and whistles also don't help to make a new business presentation any more compelling.

It is easy to get caught up in the fun of finding new and interesting tricks to make new business pitches cool, but it is not always time well spent. Clients are smart enough to see really smart thinking and creative. Over time, clients have also become adept at recognizing pitch bells and whistles.

Ask yourself and your team "what do we want the client to remember about our agency?" Odds are, the answer is not that you had really cool Trojan warriors.

Mark Schnurman
Pitch Consultant -- Filament Inc.
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