RSW Agency New Business Case Study Series, Pt. 1: Secure Your Audience

Agency New Business Case Study Series, Part 1: Secure Your Audience

Welcome to the first entry in our RSW/US new business case study series.

Case studies are one of the most effective tools in an agency new business program, and we field a lot of questions from clients about how to start them, build them, and use them effectively.

If these questions sound familiar to you, we recently put out an ebook that’s a great primer on some of the topics we’ll be covering in the series – I recommend giving it a download.

With that in mind, let’s jump right in.

The first component to consider is your audience: who’s actually going to be reading these case studies?

The answer, of course, is new business prospects. That’s the end of our blog, thanks for reading, and see you next week!

Still here? Good, because while the answer is much more nuanced than “prospects,” you’d be surprised how many agencies lose sight of even that fundamental principle.

Case Studies Are A Handshake, Not A Full Pitch

You’re not building these for employees that know your business, current clients that have experience with your services, or even a pitch recipient that’s moved you into the next phase of a search.

At most, you’re writing for someone you’ve given a brief elevator pitch.

More likely, the case study is going in front of someone that has no idea what your specialty is, zero clue about the work you’ve done in the past, and only a cursory guess about who you are and the agency you represent.

It seems obvious, but this is a key factor in putting case studies together: you need information to get to the reader, and you need to get it there fast.

You’ve heard this plenty of times throughout our series, but case studies are your time to shine.

Show off the success metrics that you helped a client achieve, and showcase the visuals that went along with it.

It’s an introduction to your agency – treat it that way and ensure that you’re putting your best foot forward.

Target More Than An Industry

When I say “target audience,” what comes to mind?

For many of you, it’s a sector, and that makes sense: marketers have an inherent preference toward shops with experience in their space, and the effect is felt across the table, with agencies now conditioned to emphasize their work in a given sector.

There’s nothing wrong with this kind of mindset, and we’ll touch on industry-specific language in a bit, but I encourage you to also consider factors like titles that you’re seeing in prospecting.

Speaking to a PR audience versus one in marketing, for example, results in numerous tweaks to language, imagery, and crucially, results featured. Beyond departments, look at the titles – the higher the level of prospect, for example, the more strategic the story you’re telling will need to be. Think quick win stories for lower-level prospects, and framework overhauls for the c-suite readers; yet another question you’ll need to ask about the audience you’re targeting.

While these kinds of tweaks may feel inconsequential, the cohesive message being sent is one of familiarity: we know your company’s challenges, and more importantly, we know how those challenges affect you specifically, whether that’s based on department or title.

Prove You Speak The Language…

There’s a reason that industry jargon is, well, industry jargon.

It’s a calling card that shows, even subconsciously, that you’re part of the [insert industry here] community.

It’s a powerful and easy way to earn some credibility behind your work, and demonstrate value in your knowledge of their space, all just by tossing out a few keystone words or phrases.

The primary goal of a new business case study is to allow prospects to see themselves in your clients’ shoes, and using the language they use everyday makes it that much easier to reach that goal.

…But Don’t Overdo It

While industry language is an effective method of driving engagement with case studies, going as far as pandering is decidedly…less effective.

The goal is to clue the reader into your knowledge of the space – not to jam as many technical terms as possible into the space you’re given.

In other words: demonstrate value, but keep it human.

Agencies are no stranger to audience considerations, but it’s interesting to see how many new business case studies go the “one-size-fits-all” route, sacrificing a measure of effectiveness to speak to anyone and everyone who might give it a read.

It’s understandable to cut corners in the interest of volume and efficiency, but without a focused effort on building around your audience segment, your case studies could very quickly fall under “one-size-fits-none.”

vm-ware-logo

Corporate Responsibility-Focused Brand Strategy Agency Located in Washington State

Our Corporate Responsibility client closed two pieces of business with:VMware, a global leader of IT, technology and industry solutions, and PricewaterhouseCoopers, a multinational professional services network of firms

 

Prior to engaging with RSW/US, our client acquired new business organically and through referrals with the lead principal driving the majority of new opportunities.

While this produced new business, they needed a more strategic and proactive approach for continuous, sustainable growth.

Their focus on corporate responsibility and purpose-driven marketing often originated in the C-suite.

Most critical in the beginning was identifying prospect companies that,

1) believed in creating purpose-driven stories to give their brands a more meaningful place in customer’s lives, and

2) engaging with visionary C-Suite decision-makers at those companies.

Corporate Responsibility

In the first few months of prospecting, we connected the Client with prospects that generated numerous proposal and RFP opportunities.

The RSW/US team supported the agency’s prospect nurturing with timely and relevant content that continued to illustrate the agency’s experience and expertise, as well as the principal’s purpose-driven speaking engagements.

The RSW/US team also provided counsel that helped the agency develop compelling proposals exhibiting how their capabilities could solve specific problems facing the prospect. With this, wins started adding up.

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close.

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.

history channel

Entertainment-Focused Full Service Digital Marketing Agency Located In NYC

Over multiple years, RSW/US helped the client close initial projects ranging from $60K to $200K with Bravo, NBC Universal, and A&E-History Channel.

This full-service digital marketing agency has an array of clients, which span Live Events, Sports, Film & Television, Theatre, Arts & Cultural Institutions and Travel & Tourism.

Prior to engaging with RSW/US, the agency acquired new business primarily through referral and was struggling to break through to top-of-the-funnel leads.

They tried and tested many – and different – business development approaches, none of which worked, as the agency didn’t have a formal process in place, and lacked consistent effort and internal bandwidth.

Full Service Digital Marketing

Our strategy began by identifying prospect companies looking to promote their brand experience on or off the couch – in other words, to drive fan engagement, develop new messaging and brand strategy, create storytelling platforms, and strengthen social media engagement.

At RSW/US, success is a team effort – our List Operations group understood the target and the New Business Director was tasked with conveying the agency’s depth of experience and value.

In one example, the RSW/US New Business Director spoke with a contact who was not ready to engage with the agency.

Entertainment-Focused Full Service Digital Marketing Agency Located In NYC

The NBD persisted with relevant and thought leader centric outreach across platforms – ten additional touches to be exact.

During a second conversation, the prospect acknowledged receiving and evaluating the client’s website and case studies, which “sold him on taking a meeting.”

In similar fashion, RSW/US continually connected the client with right-fit prospects and helped nurture relationships that developed into six pieces of business with six different companies.

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close.

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.

ucare-logo

RSW Case Study-Full Service Agency Focused Serving B2C End Consumer Brands Located in the Midwest

Two years later, the agency billed over $500K cumulatively with further work, from UCare, an independent, nonprofit health plan.

Focused on the end consumer in the B2C space, this agency traditionally acquired new business through consultants or referrals.

Having no dedicated business development personnel or process, the lead principal was the primary point of contact.

In the midst of a rebrand, they needed help understanding what capabilities would best resonate with prospects, which industries to target, and where to position the agency in the marketplace.

How RSW/US Helped a Full-Service Agency Serving B2C End Consumer Brands Close a Six Figure Piece of Business

To start, RSW identified prospect companies that fit the agency’s refocus on three primary sectors.

Our strategy called for leveraging the agency’s regional reputation and connecting with mid-management influencers and decision-makers.

Early into the program, RSW/US connected the client with a prospect that was open to an introduction but had no immediate need.

Over the next two years, the RSW New Business Director nurtured the relationship by sharing relevant work that continued to illustrate the agency’s experience and expertise.

Due to this relationship, the prospect eventually contacted the NBD to invite our agency client to pitch.

The RSW/US team further provided counsel to help the agency develop a compelling pitch deck, exhibiting how their capabilities could solve specific problems facing the prospect.

This was key in helping them win an initial assignment.

 

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.

How RSW/US Helped a SoCal Tech-focused Full-Service Agency Secure an AOR Relationship with a Thriving Startup

Tech-Focused Full Service Agency Located in SoCal

Client wins include Avaak and Hanger, as well as DriveCam and Druva, generating approximately $400K initially.

Because new tech companies form every day and industry experts change roles quickly, identifying prospects in this industry can be painstaking and time-sensitive.

As an agency deeply entrenched in the tech industry the partners knew in-house strengths were best applied on account work. Growth objectives would be most efficiently fulfilled by outsourcing new business acquisition.

Business development expertise and the efficiency of a proven methodology were key needs that RSW/US brought to the table.

How RSW/US Helped a SoCal Tech-focused Full-Service Agency Secure an AOR Relationship with a Thriving Startup

For this agency, the pool of desirable new business prospects is tightly defined by both geography and industry – limiting the size of the list the RSW/US Operations team could build.

The New Business Director working with the client dedicated herself to additional industry research to enable her to reach prospects as they took on new responsibilities and to be in position as early as possible in the development pipeline with new products and services.

While doing research, the NBD saw news about Druva, a company providing data protection.

Founded in 2008 with Angel financing and with seven employees, it has grown to become a firm of 300 employees that serves over 3,000 customers in less than six years.

In October, 2013, Druva announced completion of $25 Million in Series C funding to support its inSync platform. Within a month, our NBD had a meeting set with Druva for our client.

 

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close.

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.

How RSWUS Helped a Midwestern Brand Design Firm Solidify a New Business Process and Direction to Win Over $1 Million In New Revenue

B2B and B2C-Focused Design Firm Located in Illinois

RSW/US enabled this client to close significant new business, including Elkay, Aquascape, and WINIX Filters totaling more than $1 million in new revenue to date.

Prior to engaging RSW/US, the agency’s new business development was the responsibility of the General Manager, whose day-to-day client demands took priority.

An outdated prospect database meant that too often the client wasted time on new business calls that rarely resulted in quality leads.

After years delivering solely creative and graphic work, the firm was repositioning itself as a brand design firm with a focus on merchandising, packaging, and digital branding.

Refining the messaging of this new direction was proving to be a challenge considering the scarcity of prior results.

How RSWUS Helped a Midwestern Brand Design Firm Solidify a New Business Process and Direction to Win Over $1 Million In New Revenue

Before applying our new business methodology, RSW/US knew this client’s challenges called for strategic consultation on positioning and revising their marketing communications efforts.

During an intensive onboarding period, the New Business Director and RSW/US senior management consulted with the client to refine messaging in support of their new positioning, which guided further recommendations regarding their web presence, the design of an effective brochure and the development of informative case studies.

Once the new strategy was set and selling materials finalized, the RSW/US new business process took over.

As opportunities emerged, the New Business Director coached the General Manager on the optimal approach to first meetings – such as how to effectively talk about the prospect’s needs and how to serve up the capabilities/experience his firm could offer.

 

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close.

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.

How RSW/US Helped a Digital Firm in KY Acquire Multiple Clients and Grow into a 70+ Person, Multi-Office Agency

Mid-Sized Digital Firm Located in Kentucky

Over 6+ years, RSW/US helped this client grow into 70+ person agency with expansion into 3 states and delivered millions of dollars through new clients, including Heaven Hill Distillery, KAO, Cornerstone Brands, Armstrong, Fruit of the Loom, Hilliard Lyons, Dip ‘N Dots, and HGTV.

Prior to enlisting RSW/US services, this agency had assigned new business responsibilities to a three-person team that was comfortable nurturing leads locally through networking.

However, budgets for new business from within the market were getting increasingly small.

The in-house new business team wasn’t comfortable building relationships outside the immediate market and their own client account demands were diverting attention from new business activity.

In addition to building the agency’s client base, a key objective was to deliver solid profit margins on new business.
How RSW/US Helped a Digital Firm in KY Acquire Multiple Clients and Grow into a 70+ Person, Multi-Office Agency
To start, RSW/US refined and narrowed target industries for a stronger return.
We also recommended expanding the geography to access larger prospects.
Finally, we helped refine the client’s new business materials and the website messaging to support the new prospecting strategy.
The agency provided a wealth of assets, including a monthly newsletter and a quarterly magazine, plus frequent, relevant blog and social media posts.
Such commitment establishes the agency as a thought leader.
Because the RSW/US new business process is robust with outreach through phone, mail, email and social media, it was able to leverage this material to its fullest.
These channels provided multiple touch points with prospects and the means for disciplined follow-up that added value at each step.

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close.

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.

How RSW/US Helped a Healthcare-Focused PR Firm Score Four New Clients, Including One That Previously Got Away

Healthcare-Focused PR Firm Located in DC

In a brief period of time, our client scored four new client wins, Biotec, Cytomedix, Onconova, and Genzyme. New revenue generated in the first year collectively exceeded $750K.

Lack of new business development methodology was the key hurdle for this firm.

Despite proven healthcare expertise built over 20 years across multiple clients, no system existed to leverage that experience in generating new business.

As a case in point, the client had made initial contact with the Public Relations department at Genzyme.

Yet, weak follow-up prevented progress toward winning the business.

How RSW/US Helped a Healthcare-Focused PR Firm Score Four New Clients, Including One That Previously Got Away

RSW/US’s new business development methodology entailed a systematic approach to prospecting and opened up numerous new opportunities for this PR firm. However, the client also wanted to go after the one that got away, Genzyme.

While this PR client had established relationships to some degree with mid-level marketers at the company, making connections with contacts at the senior level was a challenge for them.

Compounding this difficulty, the parent company had already hired several PR firms for other divisions.

However, Genzyme was still looking for the “right fit” with a firm that would help them reinforce their reputation as a science-driven organization and grow their thought leadership position.

The RSW/US NBD leveraged the strong messaging we helped them craft for the firm during our onboarding process.

She networked relentlessly through the prospect organization utilizing multiple channels to reach and persuade senior decision-makers.

Eventually, we were able to successfully show Genzyme how our client was the “right fit” they were looking for.

 

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close.

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.

How RSWUS Helped St. Louis-Based Digital Marketing Agency Secure Three New Clients in Less Than a Year

Digital Marketing Agency Located in Missouri

Three new clients in less than a year, totaling more than $500K: The National Civil Rights Museum, Aratana Therapeutics, and Enjoy Life Foods. These wins positioned it as an attractive acquisition opportunity for a leading interactive firm.

This agency was facing the all-too-familiar challenge for small to mid-size agencies: struggling to grow the client base.

The owner knew they had to pursue new business but internal resources were focused on existing clients whose brands included category leaders such as Purina and Tidy Cat, as well as the St. Louis Science Center.

They needed the right new business expertise, including a methodology that would produce results.

How RSWUS Helped St. Louis-Based Digital Marketing Agency Secure Three New Clients in Less Than a YearRSW/US staff is comprised of veterans from a broad range of industries.

The New Business Director (NBD) assigned to this agency is a media industry professional with more than 20 years’ experience and knowledge of marketing and advertising from both the client and agency side.

The RSW/US NBD became fully immersed in the internal workings of the agency through a deep dive into their business.

She met the staff and learned their culture, capabilities and processes.

We called in resources from our Operations and Marketing Communications departments to develop targeted prospect lists and messaging strategies, optimized to reach decision makers.

The NBD then applied the RSW/US methodology, which includes multiple touch-points through collateral mailings, email and social media.

In addition to outreach being targeted, it was also relevant and personal for each prospect.

It delivered value and illuminated possible solutions for marketing challenges.

Perseverance in prospecting and an effective methodology was highly productive in generating new business growth for this digital agency.

 

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close.

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.

How RSW/US Helped a Pharma-Focused Marketing Agency Win New Client Work to Fuel Continued Growth

Pharma-Focused Marketing Agency Located in Pennsylvania

An initial $150K design assignment with Amgen opened up further strategic planning responsibilities worth an additional $300K.

This agency was on a fabulous growth curve, more than doubling its size to nearly 100 employees.

Exciting as that was, leadership knew they needed to step up new business efforts to ensure on-going vitality.

However, they wanted to keep client-focused strategists and creative people fully engaged on existing business.

At the time they engaged RSW/ US, only two people in the firm, the Owner and EVP, were dedicated to new business.

 

The RSW/US new business process is far more than making phone calls.

How RSW/US Helped a Pharma-Focused Marketing Agency Win New Client Work to Fuel Continued Growth

Our New Business Directors prospect strategically, using targeted proprietary lists and researching prospects in-depth before reaching out.

Even that first call is intelligent and relevant. Moreover, RSW/US NBDs stay involved beyond the first meeting, helping our clients move closer to closing successfully.

Our consistent, multi-channel approach to outreach was the key to getting the door open with this prospect.

We know that the first touchpoint will rarely result in an opportunity and that polite persistence is a powerful tool.

In this case, the prospect’s needs were longer range and a series of other “hot” business priorities extended our contact with him for a period of months.

Follow-up paid off. Throughout the process, our New Business Director was disciplined and persistent, while professionally developing the prospect relationship through this phase.

After the NBD secured a meeting for our client, he also supported the Owner and EVP as they continued to develop the relationship and manage it
through to close.

RSW/US is an outsourced agency lead generation and new business development firm that works exclusively with marketing service companies to find and win new business.

We help agencies by better positioning them in the market, finding qualified leads, setting meetings and helping move them closer to close.

To view please fill out the form below

While we offer the resources found on our site at no charge, we do ask for your assistance in maintaining a certain level of knowledge about who is accessing our valuable assets. We will never sell or distribute your information to any third parties.