The Levitan Pitch. Buy This Book. Win More Pitches. is the definitive how-to guide for every advertising, design, digital and PR agency that wants to increase its odds of winning new accounts.
Based on 30 years of pitching for new accounts, I know that there is no such thing as a standard marketing services pitch scenario. Every client category, assignment, timetable, budget, search consultant, procurement system, and client personality is unique.
However... While there is no standard pitch or agency, I know from experience that there are universal pitch criteria that can be identified and addressed regardless of the type or size of client, specific marketing objectives, or agency. To that extent, The Levitan Pitch is designed to deliver one master benefit:
You will win more new clients.
In Chapter One of this book, I discuss the very high cost of failing to run well-crafted, efficient pitches. The costs of failure include poor agency staff morale, individual employee burnout, and the financial cost to an agency's bottom-line that comes from the cost of participating in four-month agency searches and funding an agency's annual business development plan. This chapter tells the story of Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising's "The Worst Advertising Pitch Ever."
Chapter Two offers an escape hatch. You should not pitch every account that comes knocking. I give you a handy tool to gauge both the value of the prospective client and your agency's chances of winning.
Chapter Three begins to help you position the pitch for success. We look at the essential facts of the pitch and dig into understanding the client's mindset by understanding the type of assignment, type of relationship they are looking for, and what type of agency will fulfill their needs.
Chapter Four delivers the list of "The 12 Deadliest Presentation Mistakes." These are identified pitch killers that come from my personal experience and the experiences of agency CEO's, clients, and search consultants. The accompanying cartoons wouldn't be as funny if these mistakes were not being made over and over, even by the most sophisticated agencies.
In Chapter Five I lay out thirty short but very sweet suggestions for how to build a brilliant presentation that I know will greatly increase your odds of winning. These ideas cover three core elements of a successful pitch: process management, content development, and how to deliver a standout presentation. Each rule is supported by a tip or insight that offers a fast way to achieve your objectives.
Chapter Six is all about don't take my word for it. This chapter brings in valuable learning via fourteen interviews with a range of communications industry experts. It is informative and often mind-blowing to hear the pitch related experiences and advice of agency search consultants, compensation experts, an ex P&G procurement executive, a negotiation trainer, the 4A's, the Association of National Advertisers, a silicon valley presentation guru, a leading agency strategist, an ex-Nike and W+K executive on building chemistry, an IP lawyer on who actually owns your pitch ideas, the CEO of a London advertising agency, and the CEO of an independent agency network who has been on both sides of the table.
Finally, I've included insights about all too common agency pitch mistakes from 16 of the world's leading search consultants.
I hope that you will find the book informative, insightful, occasionally humorous, and most importantly, a good read that ultimately results in more wins for your company.