You Bought the Marketing Pitch – Are You Getting Results?

by Jennifer Beever

The PitchMore business owners have come to me recently saying they bought the marketing or PR pitch, spent a lot of money, but didn’t get adequate results and return on their investment (ROI).

What is it about the pitch that makes us want to buy?

I think the pitch can feed our sense of importance. A lot of attention is being paid to you, the business owner and potential buyer. And, there are a lot of good “pitchers” out there. When I was Director of Marketing in the software industry, I worked with an ad agency guy who just plain made you feel good to be a client of his. He was a master at the pitch, and we felt great working with him. Fortunately for our company, he was also good at building relationships with clients and delivering results.

Today the pitch is not enough for business owners. A pitch without results leave the business owner and client unsatisfied and burned by the marketing service provider. A pitch without marketing results is even more injurious in a recession.

The pitch can feed an emotional buy and lead us to act based on intuition not facts. Years ago I read a great book on this topic, called Counterintuitive Marketing: Achieve Great Results Using Uncommon Sense by Peter Krieg and Kevin Clancy. In the book, Krieg and Clancy write about what they call “the intuitive, testosterone-driven decision-making practices” that permeate business marketing today.We buy in, perhaps see a flurry of activity in advertising, search engine optimization, web site updates or whatever tactics were sold in the pitch, and we feel good. But, when all is said and done, we fail to get results. In all the excitement, we may even fail to make sure the pitch we buy includes a way to track the results.

As a marketing consultant, I came out of the corporate side – sales and marketing in the software industry. I didn’t work for an agency and therefore am not really a practitioner of the razzle-dazzle “pitches” to prospective clients that agencies do. When I meet with prospective clients, I tend to ask a lot of critical questions, go away with a lot of information, and come back with a practical proposal for how I can provide marketing services to drive lead generation, sales and return on marketing investment.

What’s been your experience? Did the pitch make you feel good? Did you buy? Did you get results?

Photo by Steve Mcsweeney


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Donna Peterson January 27, 2011 at 8:48 pm

Hi Jennifer –

Loved your Post!

Recently I have heard from several new prospective clients on how they bought ” the pitch” but ended up empty handed. I have even had a client go to a competitor because they were given a good pitch but now after 2 years the client has returned. As you know there are so many postal and email lists on the list rental market but you need to dig to find the good ones. So a good pitch with nothing to back it up will not help the clients with their ROI.

Jennifer Beever January 31, 2011 at 6:40 pm

Thanks, Donna, yes, there are a lot of good pitches out there, especially in what we do – marketing services – be it list rentals or consulting…. Buyer beware?

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