The New Business Test: Lose The Cozy Couch & Foosball Tables

Whether it’s your firm’s website, blog, Facebook page, Twitter accounts or new business collateral, when it comes to new business, there seems to be a lot of creative junk that is missing the mark to win new business. The question you should always keep in mind is – “Who is the audience I want to see and act on the information I am developing?”

Also, remember a website sitting alone gathers no new business. Please do not program, print or publish any information to entice new business before you consider putting what you plan to use up against this new business test.

New Business Test: Your Website

Decision Maker’s Thinking: Imagine you are the client or potential customer. You have 2 to 3 minutes total to review some ad agency’s information and the first impression – what you see initially will determine if you keep looking or click to another site. What you see and read will also determine if you toss the information received in the trash before even visiting the agency site in the first place.

ONE: You Have A Website. Now, How Do You Drive Prospects To Visit?

Who do you want to visit your website?  And how do you plan to get them there? Websites can be very effective in providing useful information to a prospect if you are brief and to the point…the point of how you will gain business for potential clients. But if no one knows your site exists besides family and friends, it’s not making money for you.

Challenge: What can you do to drive your target market to your information?

TWO: Agency Websites – If A Decision Maker Can’t Use It, Lose It.

Who did you have in mind again when you developed your website? Was it you, your cool agency and its great achievements and awards or prospective clients? Review your current website with this mentality. If a decision maker can’t use what you are showing copy-wise or image-wise to see how your agency can help him/her grow his/her business, it’s taking up valuable cyberspace. Lose it before you lose a potential client. Your diatribe regarding each of your employees, a multitude of photos of awards and cozy couches give a decision maker no reason to distinguish you from all of the other ‘cool’ agencies with cozy couches, foosball tables and hip music playing in the background.

THREE: Make Me Contact You

Give me a reason to want to contact and/or hire you in three steps – from the website landing page to ‘contact us.’ I never said new business was easy. But there are ways to accomplish this last step. It’s going to take some thorough understanding of your target, your targets’ industry and what the meaningful differentiation is that will make a decision maker feel compelled to contact your firm. This is the one test that many agencies apply very limited time towards. Don’t make this mistake!

Challenge: Make your website stand out in such a way that your potential clients HAVE TO CALL or they won’t achieve their own goals.

Want New Business? Get Off The Rollercoaster!

© Heike Brauer |

Okay. I am not anti-roller coasters by any means. In fact, not too long ago, I had a blast with my 12-year-old son on some amazing coasters in Myrtle Beach. The ups and downs, the twists and turns are great and that initial drop down at the beginning of a coaster always catches me off guard.

But unless there is something I am unaware of, being caught off guard in business is never a good thing. So, if one has to prepare for a business presentation, get ready for a job interview, and going back to childhood, think of what we would say when mom and dad got home after breaking something extremely valuable, it seems logical that trying to win new business needs a bit of preparation and planning as well.

Getting Started

Someone must be in charge: New business decisions should not be random. Someone needs to maintain a list of potential customers and provide information on the customer’s business, possible marketing opportunities your agency can provide, discern who the gate keeper is (often an administrative assistant or an executive reporting to the decision maker) and who the decision maker is (the person who determines who the marketing resource his/her company will hire.) There are many more responsibilities for the person maintaining all new business information as well. This grazes the surface.

New business is a year round job: When your agency starts to see some new business roll in, it’s not time to stop searching for more. In fact, new business is an ongoing, year round job. It is the source of fresh opportunities and the home of continual growth.

It’s all about ‘What’s in it for me?’: No matter how many awards your firm has won, how amazing your website design is and how much information you supply on each employee’s years of experience, in new business it’s all about ‘what’s in it for me, the customer?’ Remember to think about this when considering the design of new business materials as well as re-designing your Internet and social media resources.