Graphic of profit expectations

The Honeymoon’s Over – Time For Results That Matter

Congratulations, you won that big account! Now, how long will the honeymoon last? When will that new client start wondering when your team will deliver those results you promised? My experience tells me, well, yesterday.

As an account manager many years ago at two major public relations agencies, I learned the clock started ticking the moment the client signed the contract. And the faster we delivered, the quicker we earned the client’s trust, and the more money the client was likely to spend with our agency.

Thus, it’s important for any outside vendor you bring to the party to understand the agency dynamic; why it is a client hired your firm and what you need to do to keep that client happy and grow the account.

It’s also helpful to know how hard it can be for your agency to win business and how easy it is to lose it, so those outside vendors need to take their responsibilities very seriously because they can make you look really good…or they can hurt or even destroy your client relationship.

I don’t like the word “vendor,” by the way. It sounds like the guy selling hot dogs at the ballpark. A better word to describe the kind of relationship that works now and in the future is, “partner,” because a partner has a vested interest in outcomes. A vendor is often here today and gone tomorrow, maybe never to return if the outcome falls short or is merely adequate.

Your new client doesn’t want adequate. That’s what the last agency was delivering and why they hired you. So, partners should offer you value added, innovative solutions aimed at dazzling your new client and reassuring him or her that the right decision was made when your agency was awarded the business.

We work around a lot of brands that want to reach and influence consumers. Sometimes the target is millennials. Other times it’s baby boomers. Occasionally it’s everyone. There is no “one size fits all” in our space, especially when video is the common denominator. With so much video content out there, it’s vital yours tell a compelling visual story that can generate interest, clicks, shares and conversions.

A major Olympic sponsor we know spent a boatload of money on athletes preparing to compete and then presented them on its web site sitting around talking about how great the sponsor is. Why? Who thought that was a good idea? In what way was that video of any interest to anyone other than, maybe, the brand’s executives?

I can think of a dozen different ways the sponsor’s access to those athletes could have been creatively presented across a wide variety of digital and broadcast platforms that would have generated some real interest and even excitement – and nothing important happens until people get excited.

Your new client certainly understands that and is depending on you to understand it too.