What if you can spot an advertising opportunity for a company?

by fbyrne
6 replies

I was wondering whether anyone has any experience dealing with the following...

I have come across this financial services company which I think has a great new product-and I I have a great idea (I think) for an long form ad...which I am writing up-which I think could really help build their business. But I have not got a track record in advertising/marketing that would convince..

How should I approach this-and somehow get paid? Has anyone done anything similar...

#advertising #company #opportunity #spot
  • fb,

    the best thing you can do here if you don't have much credibility, is to send it off and and see what happens. The phrase escapes my mind right now, but it's basically working without the guarantee of getting paid.

    It could lead to big things, but there's no guarantee of payment. You've just got to take a leap of faith, and go for it.

    If you DO have credibility, send them an email or phone call and ask to speak to the creative director/marketing manager (the advertising head, basically) and introduce yourself and tell them you have a fantastic idea, perhaps a little about yourself (build credibility - make them understand why they should listen to you), and ask if they'd be interested in hearing it over lunch/coffee or set up a meeting at their business.

    This is your best bet.

    Best of luck with it!

    50% converting squeeze pages, 12% converting WSO's, and more...
    BenPalmerWilson Copywriting
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    • Profile picture of the author videolover7
      If you're willing to work on spec (as Ben suggests), you could contact the decision maker at the company and make a proposal. You'll write a sales letter in return for a percentage of the sales it generates.

      (I did it myself when I first started out.)

      If possible, retain ownership of the SL just in case it's a big winner. You may want to license it to other companies down the line.

      And make sure there's a plan in place to drive traffic. You don't want to waste your time if the company fails to promote it.

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  • Profile picture of the author Ken Hoffman
    The potential danger of this is you have this idea, without knowing anything about the company. It would be far better to have a meeting and get some info about their specific marketing goals, before you pitch them an idea either they've heard before or that is going in a direction they don't want to go.

    And without them paying a fee of any kind, it's really easy for them to sit on it forever, or do nothing with it. And if you are working on spec, you're at the mercy of them implementing correctly. There are plenty of ways for them to muck it up.

    They don't care about your credibility. They care about getting a proven, results-creating ad. Can you honestly create that if you have no experience or track record? I'd strongly recommend finding some way to test it first. Even if only showing it to someone in the financial industry and seeing what their response to it is. You're not looking for, "I like this." Rather, you are looking for "I would buy this."

    If the strength of what you have here is mainly the idea, I'd have them sign an intellectual property agreement, that if they use it they'll pay you a fee plus a percentage of revenue generated.

    If not, I'd hire a professional copywriter to write a great ad for you. Then go to the company with that ad. You'll have greater confidence that you are bringing them something that will work well.

    There are also a lot of legal limits in writing for this market. So showing your piece to someone in the industry would be good feedback. Better to find this out before you are sitting in a meeting with the decision maker.

    It depends on the size of the company of course, but I probably wouldn't go to the creative director to do a deal like this.

    You ultimately get face-to-face with the decision maker. Most likely that will be the president of the company, unless it's a large company. In fact, if it is a large company it may be a big hassle to do, and might be tough to convince them to do a deal like this anyway.

    So send a simple one page letter briefly describing your idea to pique their curiousity with the goal of getting an appointment with them to sell them on it. Often times you can do this with a simple phone call. Other times you need to send them a personal letter. The advantage of the phone is getting to make a connection with them. Even a letter can be ignored. Again, make sure the letter you send is compelling. Yes, a fedex will always get opened...but unless the letter inside is effective, you won't get the response.

    In this case you need a 100% response to achieve your outcome. So it may be worth putting in the time and energy to get through the gatekeeper and talk to the decision maker. If you absolutely can't do that, then send them the fedex, or even a hand written personal letter to them, if you are on a budget.
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    • Profile picture of the author fbyrne
      Thanks for that.

      Very helpful.

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  • Profile picture of the author RickDuris
    Your best strategy before you propose, is to research the company and their marketing.

    Give it the same amount of research and attention you would a job interview. Part of getting the deal is being prepared for all the questions they may have.

    And here's the big thing: Be prepared to implement your idea for them. Turnkey it as much as possible. "Done for you" mindset.

    Don't assume they understand the value of the idea. Don't assume they've never thought of the idea before. (If you do a poor job proposing, they'll say that just to get rid of you.)

    Always hold back some key components to the idea. A resource, some copy, some technology, etc.

    Where possible, license the idea to them or turn it into a service for them. If they want exclusivity, tell them "yes, for a price."

    Good luck,

    - Rick Duris
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