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Fifth of agencies suffer poor pitch practice - Q3 2013 IPA Post-Pitch Survey

A fifth of agencies have experienced a negative pitch process, the IPA’s Post-Pitch Survey, published today (28th October 2013) reveals. It also highlights where the pitch process could have failed.

31/01/2014

The survey shows that during the period of Q1 to Q3, 20% respondents indicated that the overall management of the pitch process was poor or very poor. 63%, however, described the management of the pitch process as excellent (10%), very good (23%), or good (30%), and a further 12% of respondents reported that it was fair. An additional 5% described it as neither good nor poor.

The survey also reveals that there are sharp differences between good pitches and poor pitches and highlights the issues that clearly differentiate one from the other. 

Across a range of pitch attributes in six cases the difference in positive perception between a good pitch and a poor pitch was in excess of 50 percentage points, revealing which areas clients could improve on. They are, in order of impact on the pitch process:

The client brief-
Of those who reported a negative pitch experience, only 9% said the client brief was well articulated, 60 percentage points lower than those reporting a positive pitch experience.

The interim meetings–
Of those who reported a negative pitch experience, only 16% agreed that any interim meetings were handled well, 59 percentage points lower than those reporting a positive pitch experience.

The RFI–
Only 20% of those reporting a negative experience agreed that the RFI was clear and concise, 55 percentage points lower than those reporting a positive pitch experience.

Feedback from interim meetings-
Only 12% of those reporting a negative experience agreed that the feedback from interim meetings was clearly actionable, 55 percentage points lower than those reporting a positive pitch experience.

The client’s requirement of the pitch–
Of those who reported a negative pitch experience, only 15% agreed that the client’s requirement of the pitch was clear, 53 percentage points lower than those reporting a positive pitch experience.

Key stakeholder involvement–
Of those who reported a negative pitch experience, only 15% agreed that the key stakeholders were involved throughout the pitch process, 51 percentage points lower than those reporting a positive pitch experience.

 See the full chart.

Says Cormac Loughran, CMO at Aegis Media UK and Co-Chair of the IPA New Business and Marketing Group: “While I am of course delighted that two-thirds of respondents have enjoyed positive pitching activity, with a fifth of agencies still reporting poor experiences, there is more work to be done in order to ensure best practice and to stop the needless waste created. This survey therefore provides an invaluable snapshot as to which areas clients and agencies should focus on in order to create the ideal pitch process.”

The IPA and ISBA will continue to examine pitch practice and inject new thinking into this topical issue as part of the Good Pitch Week starting on 4th November 2013. The week will comprise of a series of cross-industry events for clients and agencies and will see the launch of a best practice guide for six new media pitch principles. For further information and to book tickets, visit: http://www.ipa.co.uk/news/the-ipa-and-isba-launch-first-ever-good-pitch-week 

Notes to editors:

The New Business Monitor was formerly known as the IPA New Business Monitor.

The IPA Post-Pitch Survey for Q3 was completed by its member agencies with 166 responses received, representing 137 pitches.

Q4 results will be published in January 2014. Any member agencies who would like to complete this survey can contact Zoe Mitchell on zoem@ipa.co.uk.

Last updated 31/01/2014


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