At this stage between the initial briefing meeting and the time spent researching and working on the plan we have spent well over a day’s work before we meet with the prospect and present our Marketing\PR plan for his business.
This is always a tricky stage for us – if you want to have a chance of winning the new account you have to punch in the time, put in the research, brainstorm and put all your best ideas and thinking into the plan.
We don’t get paid for this but we do obviously hope that the client likes what we are proposing and then engages us to execute the plan for them – Put your best foot forward if you are serious about winning the business.
We are two hours into our presentation and the prospect seems to be embracing the plan and it is all looking very positive. Our plans are always quite comprehensive and cover everything from being found on-line, a review of marketing collateral and website, a PR plan including ideas that should generate the right media coverage and a social media plan to accelerate all of these efforts.
At the end of the presentation, while everything seems to be going well there is one huge, risky issue that we wish to discuss.
“We feel your business name isn’t right” we gently explain to the prospect. This could be as delicate as telling someone you don’t like their child’s name!
“But what about my website, my branding, the money I’ve invested to date in advertising, pushing the name out there?” he asks.
“It is saying the wrong thing about your business, it is giving the wrong impression of what you are about” … he seems to be digesting and contemplating what we are saying , so we continue “we feel strongly that we would be doing a huge disservice to you if we drove on with a plan without first addressing the issue of your business name“.
After a few minutes he admitted that he always had some concerns about the name “fit” and we were the only (maybe foolish?) ones he met that had raised the issue.
We presented him with some alternative names that we felt more accurately captured the essence of the business offering and he seemed genuinely interested in them.
In truth we could have made life easier for ourselves and probably for him by just ignoring the business name issue and presenting a plan that was in keeping exactly to the brief.
He asked us to leave the plan with him to mull over while he went on leave and we are still waiting to hear…
Sometimes are you better off not saying the right thing?
(p.s. – We’ll let you know how this one turns out!)
Fuzion are a PR firm with offices in Cork and Dublin