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3 different types of pitch consultants and what you can expect from each

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This post is by Darren Woolley, Founder and Global CEO of TrinityP3With his background as analytical scientist and creative problem solver, Darren brings unique insights and learnings to the marketing process. He is considered a global thought leader on agency remuneration, search and selection and relationship optimisation.

Since 2003 when we undertook our first pitch management project for an advertiser, we have been investing heavily in building our resources, both human and online. Today we have our TrinityP3 Agency Register and Ad Cost Checker databases that contain the extensive details of more than 2000 agencies and a database of agency remuneration benchmarks from more than 20 markets and growing.

More than a decade ago the market was much simpler. Digital was relatively new and Facebook had less than one million users. We were lucky we could build and develop our methodology, working with our clients to develop more robust and proven techniques and methodologies.

Marketing and advertising have become increasingly complex

It is fair to say we were very much a Process Consultancy with a clear view of what would be required to add Rocket Science to our offering. And it was clear that it was not just because we wanted it, but because the industry needed it.

Marketing and advertising have become increasingly complex. The pace of change, driven by technology, means that the process for selecting and managing a roster of agencies also needs to change.

I believe if we were starting now we would struggle to keep up-to-date and relevant, especially in areas such as digital media, data analytics and technology. But increasingly this is across all aspects of marketing. I can only imagine how the traditional ‘Grey Hair” consultants would cope with these topics based on their industry experience from a time when this technology did not exist.

It got me thinking about the journey we have come from in the area of agency roster selection and management. The transition from Process Consultants to offering our clients Rocket Science in this area. (Not enough grey hair as yet for that designation, although there are a few Grey Haired Consultants that clearly take to the bottle of dye).

Types of consultant offers based on the current market

Here are my thoughts on what each type of consultant offers based on the current market.

 ProcessGrey HairRocket Science
Market KnowledgeHas a process of finding agencies as requiredRelies on their own experience and knowledge of the market place based on personal experienceDemonstrable resource and methodology for capturing agency information and a defined process for staying up-to-date
ExpertiseExpertise in managing a pitch or tender process, but will not always have personal experience in the discipline being tenderedRelies on their general industry knowledge but increasingly does not have the experience in technologyHas resources with expertise across the various disciplines and specifically for the discipline required by the client
Management ApproachFocuses on the processFocuses on advisoryFocuses on the total process including roster alignment, search and selection, sustainable remuneration and performance optimisation
MethodologyHas knowledge of a number of processes and is focused on the process more than the outcomeWill usually have one preferred methodology or be willing to go with what ever process you suggestWill have a range of methodologies and provide advice on the appropriate methodology to achieve your specific objectives.
CapabilitiesPrimarily offers project management service. Other capabilities are usually outsourcedOne man band offering advice across all areas requiredOffers a full range of services across a team of people:- Project management, Strategic insights, Subject matter experts
RemunerationUsually hourly ratesUsually hourly rates or project feesProject fees
Human ResourcesCan be a one person operation or a team focused on process managementOften only a one or two person operation offering general adviceHas a team of specialist and subject matter experts and project managers who are able to guarantee delivery of the project on time and budget
BenchmarkingHas a detailed Excel spreadsheet approach to capturing agency data and will benchmark one agency against anotherRelies on their personal experience and benchmarks agency remuneration on personal experience and gut feelWill have an extensive and demonstrable database and proven robust and reproducible methodology. Also has an extensive knowledge of agency remuneration models and trends
CredibilityOften has a low profile in the industryIs known in the industry because of their careerIs known as a thought leader in the industry
Cost / ValueMedium cost, represents value where the advertiser is lacking, project management resourcesLow cost, represents good value where you need additional market knowledgeHigh cost, represents very good value for where the outcome is critical. Provides detailed and specific outcomes

A higher level of Process Management Consulting

My experience has been that the increasing number of procurement professionals in the marketing category brings a higher level of Process Management Consulting. No matter if they are internal or external, procurement brings process rigour to the search and selection process.

Deciding what type of consultant or assistance is up to the needs of the advertiser. This will be determined by the desired outcome and the current situation. Of course it is possible for an advertiser to manage the process without any assistance.

But with the increased complexity in the agency market and in the requirements of the marketing strategy, then increasingly it is  likely advertisers will require assistance. And when that happens the ultimate result will depend on the choices they make.

 

To find our how TrinityP3 Marketing Management Consultants can help you further with this, click here.

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Darren is considered a thought leader on all aspects of marketing management. A Problem Solver, Negotiator, Founder & Global CEO of TrinityP3 - Marketing Management Consultants, founding member of the Marketing FIRST Forum and Author. He is also a Past-Chair of the Australian Marketing Institute, Ex-Medical Scientist and Ex-Creative Director. And in his spare time he sleeps. Darren's Bio Here Email: darren@trinityp3.com

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