Attracting New Agency Business

According to a new survey by RSW/US, about 8 in 10 agencies believe that the number of opportunities for new business are about the same as last year (34.4%) or have increased (44.8%). But, more than 8 in 10 say that obtaining new business is either as hard or harder than it was last year.

Difficulty of Obtaining New Business vs. Previous Year (% of Respondents)

Degree of Difficulty

% of Respondents

A lot easier

1.8%

Easier

15.7

The same

47.6

Harder

25.3

A lot harder

9.6

Source: RSW/US,October 2012

Agencies that say they are having a tougher time finding new business because they believe there are fewer opportunities out there, or not looking hard enough, or aren't open to starting a relationship with a small piece of a client's pie with the hopes of growing it into something larger.

Reasons For Difficulty in Obtaining New Business (% of Responses; Multiple Selections OK)

Reason

% of Responses

Less time to accomplish

20.7%

Fewer opportunities

65.5

Harder to break through to prospects

58.6

Can’t invest in new business program

5.2

Other

22.4

Source: RSW/US,October 2012

The most effective tools for generating new business, according to agencies, are referrals (59%), networking (57.4%), and business from existing clients (57.4%). As marketing ranks thin, there are fewer people moving from one company to the next - thus limiting referral and networking opportunities.

Marketing Tools Most Effective in Generating New Business (% of Responses; Multiple Selections OK)

Tool

% of Responses

Social media

11.5%

Referrals

59.0

Email marketing

11.5

Paid search

1.6

Organic search

4.9

Cold calls

18.0

Networking

57.4

Conferences

9.8

From existing clients

57.4

Presentations or speaking

24.6

Email campaigns

9.8

Source: RSW/US,October 2012

Agencies are significantly more likely to believe that the number of new business opportunities is increasing relative to last year, than remaining the same or declining.

Opportunities For New Business Relative to Previous Year

Opportunity

% of Respondents

Expectation For 2013

Remain the same

34.4%

34.4%

Increase

44.8

61.7

Decrease

20.8

3.9

Source: RSW/US,October 2012

Marketers are getting more and more sophisticated, says the report, and need firms to help them strategically find their way into the digital and social space, and integrate these new platforms.

Digital and social continue to drive new business opportunities for Agencies, with 76% and 53% of Agencies, respectively, stating that they are seeing these two areas as the biggest drivers of business relative to other marketing/media platforms.

Frequency of Business Opportunity Type (% of Responses; Multiple OK)

Type of Opportunity

% of Responses

Digital (web, design, mobile)

76.3%

Search (paid or organic)

19.1

Social media

52.6

Traditional (print, TV, etc)

46.1

Sales collateral

23.0

Trade show support

13.8

Media planning/buying

28.3

Inbound marketing programs

6.6

Source: RSW/US,October 2012

The report includes responses to questions from Adweek about the changing nature of how Marketers are reviewing agencies. Nearly 1/2 of all Marketers say that creative is always part of the pitch process. Operational considerations are growing in importance when reviewing Agencies (according to Marketers) 73% say it is "growing in importance".

Frequency of Creative And Operations Presenations Included in the “Pitch” (% of Respondents)

Included In Pitch

Creative

Operations, Resources, Efficiencies, Cost “Growing in Importance” (A lot to not at all)

10 = Always

12.8%

28.2%

9

10.5

16.5

8

22.1

28.2

7

18.6

11.8

6

12.8

5.9

5

8.1

5.9

4

8.1

2.4

3

5.8

1.2

2

1.2

0.0

1

0.0

0.0

Source: RSW/US,October 2012

And, from the “marketers” viewpoint, the report includes to the response to the question “... how do you most often learn about new (to you) agencies... ?

Marketers Learn About Agencies (Other Than Referrals; % of Responses; Multiple OK)

Source

% of Responses

Social Media

15.6%

Email from agency

58.3

Mailings from agency

49.0

Industry conferences

35.4

Webinars

11.5

Phone calls from agency

46.9

Source: RSW/US,October 2012

For additional information about the study and more responses, please visit RSW/US here.

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