“Even Life-Saving Innovations Don’t Sell Themselves”

Bob Wiesner | February 23, 2017

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Growing your revenue, especially when facing the tough competition of a new business pitch, is tough without a great solution.  But a great product or creative idea alone isn’t enough.

I’ve said for years that great ideas aren’t enough to win in a competitive situation if they’re not presented through a focused, compelling pitch.  This article in HBR drove the point home even harder for me.  The title is crystal clear:

Even Life-Saving Innovations Don’t Sell Themselves.

Here are companies that are offering their customers new ways to save lives.  And the product alone isn’t enough.  They need strong marketing, sales and presentation plans to generate business.

You’re not saving lives, usually.  So your need for these methods is even stronger.

When you go beyond the headline, the parallels to agency new business – and most service providers – are even more compelling.  How about considering these steps, all covered in the article, for your next new business initiative:

  1. Don’t focus on the product’s features.  Make the benefits clear, easy to understand, and easy to adopt.
  2. Find a laser-focused, well-defined target that would be interested in it.
  3. Have capable sellers (not just creatives and specialists) who know how to speak the prospect’s language.

I’ve seen too many new business pitches where great ideas lost to good ideas because the good ideas were better sold.  You need to focus as much effort on selling and pitching as you do on idea development.

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