By Rob Whittle, CEO, Williams Whittle
Used to be that you toted your VHS tape to a prospect’s office, popped it in the VCR and played five to ten of your favorite spots. Then, you’d drag out your oversized leather portfolio with laminated newspaper and magazine ads stuffed between plastic sleeves and flip through it, telling little stories about each one. Lord help us…then there was the radio reel.
Now, of course, not only are there no tapes and VCR machines, you can hardly find an open office to visit with your wares. Not that you need an office with all things digital.
The agency reel is probably a seventy-year-old convention; however it was displayed. No doubt David Ogilvy dragged around a projector and a film reel to display his agency’s talents. Now, instead of showing back-to-back spots, the agency reel has to do more. It not only is a showcase for your agency’s creative, but it also has to reveal your agency’s soul and some of its sensibility.
What’s your agency all about? Really. Are you just a collection of spots and videos? Some websites and a cool office? Come to think about it, how often do you even get to talk about that stuff? We are trained—rightly so—to focus on the client’s needs, not to blow our own horns. But clients and prospects also want to know whom they are dealing with beyond the creative product. The best way to do that, I believe, is a face-to-face good old-fashioned chat. That’s fine for clients when you’re already “married”. But what about prospects who just want you to answer their RFP or RFQ questions, and if you make the finals, then they’ll give you a shot at making a presentation?
You’d better have a way to communicate the essence of your agency and its personality beforehand. And, yes, it has to be digital almost every time. Enter the Agency Reel of 2021. Because it might be your only shot at introducing yourself properly. To my knowledge, lawyers, doctors and architects don’t have to worry about this. Can you imagine your prospective dentist sending you a mood reel? “Hey, she seems like a sensitive person; maybe she won’t hurt me in the chair.” But there are many trials that we as ad agencies have to go through that other professionals don’t.
So, all of that said, here’s our Agency Reel.
What do you think? Feel like you know us a little bit? Would you give us a shot?
For more on “Ideas that Generate Change for Nonprofits”, visit our website: williamswhittle.com.
Williams Whittle is a Capitol Communicator sponsor.