Getting your agency match fit for growth in 2022

The last 18 months were all about survival of the fittest. But now it’s time to go for growth. 

On the 2nd of November, our Group Director of Clients & Strategy, Rose Bentley, led a roundtable discussion around things to consider when developing a successful business development strategy. She covered four key components:

What’s your Big Idea? 

First, focus your proposition by looking at what your clients and prospects need and what is tangibly special about your business. The overlap between these two- the magic in the middle –  is the idea that drives your proposition. Be as ambitious as you can be; remember, you are selling not only your services and skills, but your Brand.

What kind of shape do you want your business to be?

When planning this, think dinosaurs. Most businesses in growth mode are more T‑Rex shaped than Brontosaurus. That is to say the T‑Rex has a bigger head and body (larger clients, multiple workstreams, long tail relationship) versus the Brontosaurus (very long tail of smaller projects with some bigger clients in the middle but very few that are big and substantial). Thinking about your desired business shape will help you focus your attention on the kind of clients that will feed this shape, rather than a scatter gun approach.

Who are your ideal clients?

The Magic Triangle is a great tool for stress testing your prospect list. This triangle has the three elements you need to consider before approaching a prospect: what do they need (that fits your proposition and brand); what have you done previously to meet similar needs (not necessarily in similar sectors); and who do you know there who could be a budget holder or an information provider?

If you can confidently answer all three, then this is a great prospect for you to approach. If you can answer two of the three, it’s still worth a shot, but if you can only answer one of these questions, then only approach this prospect if you have a contact there, otherwise it could be a waste of your time, and theirs.

Learn more about how to build your perfect persona here.

How to start the conversation

With your core proposition aligned with the client, your business shape decided upon, and your ideal clients identified, it’s time to start the conversation. But how?

There are countless ways to initiate a conversation with a prospect, and no universal one size fits all method. Here are a few ideas:

  • Attend industry events as a networking opportunity
  • Use recent awards the prospect has won as a starting point
  • Use personal connections
  • Stay up-to-date with relevant news, such as new senior hires that you can approach
  • Create compelling content that you can publish on your own platforms and send to prospects
  • Think about building your profile through PR (you can talk to Propeller about all of these) 

And finally…

New business should be everyone’s business. All your employees should be engaging with the challenge of winning new business. It takes a village!

The core of any good business strategy lies in these five steps:

  1. Understand what’s special about you
  2. Define the key characteristics of an ‘ideal client’
  3. Identify your ideal client wish list
  4. Focus on what they really need
  5. Make sure this aligns to your proposition

If you’re looking at getting match fit for growth in 2022, book a meeting with Propeller here.