netting rabbits

Our recent webinar, Frustration Breeds Opportunity – Tensions between Agencies and Marketers, describes dynamics that increase the challenges for new business development.

Just a couple among them are:

1. Marketers tend to be consolidating agencies

2. A majority of agencies express intent to be increasingly aggressive in new business activity.

2015 is almost a quarter old now, and your new business plan should be in place and operating at full throttle.

So, it’s a good time to assess how your plan is doing at this point, and update tactics for Second Quarter.

Look at what is working well and do MORE of that. Adjust and reinforce elements that could be delivering more.

We touched on accountability for your new business program in the webinar, and it might be one of those areas to review.

Accountability is critical to new business success. It’s not uncommon to hear from agencies that new business is “everyone’s responsibility”.

Or, “we have a team”, with the team meeting at set intervals to review new business opportunities.

And when these people have other responsibilities in the firm, especially client responsibilities, new business often takes a back seat.

If new business keeps getting moved to the to-do-list for “tomorrow”, no one really has accountability for it.

Forbes posted a column late last year on accountability skills for business success.

It is written more generally, coaching business leaders on nurturing accountability for the energy and success it drives. Yet, the skills this article identifies apply directly in agency new business.

Each of the skills is very important, but I wanted to call out Forbes’ #4 – “Clear Vision and Direction” – relating an old Chinese proverb: “The hunter that chases two rabbits catches neither one.”

How many rabbits are you and your people chasing?

See that the New Business Rabbit has a dedicated hunter.

It’s clear the industry will continue to become increasingly competitive.

Keep your firm in the hunt with the focus and accountability your future deserves.


Mark is a 30-year veteran of the consumer packaged goods, advertising, and marketing service industry. Mark started his career at DDB Needham in Chicago prior to earning his MBA from the J.L. Kellogg Business School at Northwestern where he majored in Marketing and Economics. Prior to starting RSW/US in 2005, Mark was General Manager for AcuPOLL, a global research consultancy. Sneider worked in Marketing for S.C. Johnson and KAO Brands. Sneider has been invited to speak at numerous Agency events and network conferences domestically and internationally including the 4A’s, Magnet, NAMA, TAAN, and MCAN. Sneider has been featured in prominent industry publications including Adweek, Media Post, e-Marketer, and Forbes. When not working (which often seems like not often), Mark likes to run miles, go to church, and just chill with a hard copy issue of Fast Company.