ISBA and the IPA have just launched a new joint initiative.
It’s a web site about how to run good pitches and you can find it at www.thegoodpitch.com
As a guide to pitch good practice and responsible behaviour it is a highly instructive and indeed laudable exercise.
The video clips on the web site are informative and give a clear indication not only of recommended positive behaviours but also an insight into the high levels of frustration and cost incurred if good practice and process is ignored.
But for me, only one of the many advertising and marketing great and good featured on the site actually gets to the nub of the issue.
Stephen Woodford Chairman and CEO of DDB London suggests
‘I would do much less pitching. I would try and fix the relationship, change the team, change the talent, change every aspect of the relationship …so pitching becomes very much a last resort’
I couldn’t agree more.
In fact Stephen’s comment potentially suggests a number of equally, if not more useful ISBA/IPA initiatives.
Instead of the good pitch web site how about the ‘building a good relationship’ web site or ‘the importance of positive process’ web site or ‘how to fix a relationship without pitching’ web site.
I’m sure all of these could benefit Clients and their Agencies and help build long term mutually beneficial relationships, and importantly help avoid the inefficiencies, high costs and discontinuities that inevitably accompany a pitch process.
That is unless your view of good process is a series of well run pitches.
Of course some Clients have adopted and even benefited from this way of working.
Equally those Clients who have engaged their Agency for the long term and have focused on sorting out relationship issues rather than walking away from them or pitching because of them have, I suspect, prospered disproportionately.
A great example of the latter is Audi.
To my knowledge they last pitched the business in the early 1980’s, and having appointed BBH have been in partnership with them ever since.
Vorsprung durch technik as they say…. Or perhaps it should be Vorsprung durch arbeitsgang (process)