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You Don’t Sell Your Own Product as Well as You Sell Your Client’s

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You Don’t Sell Your Own Product as Well as You Sell Your Client’s

It’s a curious fact that advertising agencies don’t know much about selling — at least when it comes to selling their own brand. Even though agency professionals show good sense (and sometimes sheer brilliance) when crafting messaging strategies for their clients, this is rarely applied to how they market themselves…

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An Open Letter to Marketers: Caveat Emptor

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An Open Letter to Marketers: Caveat Emptor

“Buyer beware” might also be described as “sold as is” — a warning about deals that seem too good to be true. Given the power currently ceded to procurement professionals inside client organizations, “caveat emptor” applies to agency-client relationships more than ever before...

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Your Clients Hire You to be Effective, Not Efficient

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Your Clients Hire You to be Effective, Not Efficient

The next time a client requests a set of “deliverables,” remember that this is not the real reason your firm was hired in the first place.  You were hired to deliver business and marketing outcomes.  The deliverables are just a means to that end.

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Strategy Is Deciding What Not to Do

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Strategy Is Deciding What Not to Do

Even if you have a “strategic plan,” you may not have a strategy. Creating a comprehensive 30-slide “plan” is comparably when contrasted with the critical thinking needed to craft a bona fide strategy. A plan can be (and usually is) fairly long, whereas a good strategy is short.  The counterintuitive truth about business strategy is that it’s mostly about deciding what not to do.

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Heads or Hands: Hired for What You Know, or What You do?

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Heads or Hands: Hired for What You Know, or What You do?

In today’s unbundled marketplace, it’s essential to recognize the difference between “Upstream” and “Downstream” work not only because these two different classes of work require different talent, but also different pricing. While professional buyers will attempt to turn your service offerings into apples-to-apples comparisons, remember that the job of the seller (that’s you) is to consciously and continually identify and separate different classes of value and sell, price, and deliver them accordingly.  

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Creating an Uncontested Market for Your Firm

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Creating an Uncontested Market for Your Firm

If it feels like you’re in an unrelenting race for new business, competing against agencies offering similar services in a similar way, there’s an easy way out: stop offering similar services.  If you shake off the self-imposed shackles of “high utilization,” you give permission to your team to develop their ideas for services and products that can fill the unmet needs of clients. You can fly in the blue skies where no one else is flying.

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