As a marketing agency leader, you can’t expect to win a pitch if you don’t know your audience, right?
What if I told you that’s how most marketing agencies currently operate? You read that right. Most marketing agencies are at odds with their audiences when they make new business pitches.
For example, 34% of agencies think they most often win pitches thanks to their recognized and respected brand name, according to research from Cobomba. But only 15% of the marketers that hire agencies indicate brand name is a deciding factor when making a selection.
On the flip side, 42% of marketers agree that high value for cost plays an influential role when choosing an agency—and yet, only 13% of agencies think they win pitches based on that.
Are you convinced yet?
Agencies have some work to do when it comes to understanding what their potential new partners need. And to earn new business, agencies must develop pitches that align with marketers’ expectations.
This is where AI comes in. With artificial intelligence, agencies have the power to create pitches that stand out, winning them more business. Here’s how.
1. Really Know the Prospect
Researching and learning about your prospect should be a given, right? Unfortunately, there are gaps agencies must fill to earn business steadily.
What does “knowing the prospect” actually mean? We’re talking about the prospect’s audience, mission, strengths and weaknesses, and competition.
And many agencies don’t measure up to those expectations. At Cobomba, we found that 82% of marketers expect agencies to conduct primary research on their competitors as part of the pitch.
However, only 56% of agencies always conduct competitive research. That kind of misstep can squash your chances right out of the gate.
But AI can be a huge differentiator here. With AI-powered content marketing technology, for example, agencies can get a clear picture of a prospect’s industry landscape to see where they fall—and what their competition is doing.
2. Be Data Driven
As they say, data is king.
And it’s not just about impressing your prospect with slides full of stats. It’s about quantifying your value to the prospect, and using evidence that tells a story.
If you guide a narrative with data instead of strictly anecdotal evidence, you’ll accomplish two things.
First, you’ll make a more compelling point. It’s just more influential to show your point when you back it up with numbers.
Second, you’ll help your point of contact make their pitch to the C-suite. With valuable data, budget requests are more easily justified.
Luckily, AI is really, really good at mincing data. In fact, that’s how it’s trained—on massive data sets. And you can use AI tools to make compelling cases with data, gleaning insights from things like the prospect’s website analytics or general sentiment in recent media placements.
Blow away your prospects with numbers that mean something, and your pitch will have a much higher chance of getting accepted.
3. Position Yourself as a Consultant
Many agencies pitch a prospect to win a specific project. In fact, this is a rising trend in the agency world—fewer 12-month contracts; more project-based work.
This setup has its pros and cons, but one thing is certain: A surefire way to stand out in the proposal process is by showing immense value outside of the scope of work. Now, this doesn’t mean pitching the prospect on services they don’t need.
Instead, it means showing your expertise in an ever-changing industry. It means demonstrating how your unique knowledge can position you as a consultant to guide the prospect into the future.
And guess what? If your agency is even in the experimental stages of AI, you’re already ahead of the vast majority of your competition.
AI is already transforming the marketing industry. And forward-thinking marketers (the kind you want to align your agency with) want an agency partner they can rely on to guide them into the future. They’ve likely heard the buzz about AI, but aren’t sure how to get started.
Want to blow their minds? Start experimenting with AI. Become familiar to the point where you can make recommendations to your prospects, and watch your business skyrocket.
One tool to get started with is Cobomba, an AI-powered content strategy and content intelligence platform. You can use it to learn the content topics customers want—and you can trial it for free.
Alex is the marketing manager at Cobomba, an AI-powered content intelligence platform.