I have recently come back from a 3-day marketing forum, where I had the ability to talk one-on-one with over 40 CMO’s, Brand Managers, and Market Developers. By far, the number one comment being made was: “we are looking for new and innovative ideas to help our business ….oh yea and we also have a very limited budget to do anything.”
This, of course, is no shock to those of us who are communicating with the market every day. We have been getting this request for years. But today there is a difference in tone and feel. Everyone is fighting for their survival, both on a brand level and on a personal level. This is as much as a cry for help as it is a request for ideas.
These requests leave the agencies who want to gain new clients in quite a quandary. How much time and effort do we put into providing solutions to problems which may make our contact look good in a board meeting but may not ever get funded?
My suggestion is to provide solid thinking to those who fit our “sweet spot of experiential marketing” because we have enough expertise and experience that these ideas come with less effort. But to spend a lot of resources to provide research and thinking to those in the “grey” areas requires much more effort, and costs…..and none of us can afford to waste either in today’s environment.
Overall thoughts: The search for fresh ideas is real and imminent. For those of us with long-term clients, we need to realize that they will give us the first look….but not the only look. And for all of us who are searching for new clients, the opportunities are greater.