Making Friends Is Good Business
I was on a plane from Portland to Boston yesterday. I spent some of the time reading John Jantsch’s new book “Duct Tape Selling”. He is a big fan of making friends with bloggers and other industry influencers to advance your own brand awareness and authority. I make friends and it works.
I am here to speak at HubSpot’s Inbound 2014 conference. I am up on Thursday speaking about how advertising agencies (and all B2B marketers) can write and publish a book in 6 months. True. I’ve done it twice. You can see my presentation here.
I was invited to speak because of my guest posting relationship with Agency Post, an advertising industry blog that was purchased by HubSpot. The strategic friendship with Agency Post delivers awareness for my advertising agency consultancy and now this connection to the all-powerful HubSpot marketing machine.
I am also a friend of San Francisco’s Bob Hoffman. Bob is the best selling author of “101 Contrarian Ideas About Advertising” which is Amazon’s #1 selling advertising book, “The Ad Contrarian” and “The Ad Contrarian” blog, which was named one of the world’s most influential advertising and marketing blogs by Business Insider.
Today Bob published a blog post about my book. Actually, he published the interview I did with him about his views on advertising agency pitching.
Bob makes 7 points about pitching. I’ll riff on the headlines. You’ll have to visit Bob’s blog to see what he wrote.
Or, if you really want to get the full Levitan Pitch treatment (and all of my interviews with experts)… buy the book.
Here’s Bob on pitching:
- You can’t be everyone’s girlfriend: Simply put, don’t’ pitch everything that walks.
- Do what you tell your clients to do: Look and sound different from your competitive agency set.
- Be clear on your objective at each stage: Run your pitch like a strategic marathon, not a sprint. Read Bob’s words to see what I mean.
- Make the presentation you want to make, not the one you’re asked to make: Be authentic.
- Only let the good presenters talk: Bring your best. The one’s that will win.
- Have a strategy and stick to it: Run a smart, strategic presentation.
- The best new business program is a good reputation: I’ll use Bob’s word here… Duh!
I also write for Advertising Week Social Club. Because of this, I am going to Advertising Week New York as a journalist. This is a major conference and I will be able to promote my book to industry leaders. I am also starting to work with them to see if I can put on a program at Advertising Week Europe.
I could go on about the obvious benefits of making friends but I suspect that you get it.
However, there is one key point I have to make.
Your relationships need to be a two-way street. Make friends to make friends first and the goodies will flow. Follow rule number 8:
Do Not Be Obnoxious.