Finding new clients and perfecting your pitch

When it comes to landing new clients, it’s all about networking in the campaign world. In a cycle with competitive races up and down the ballot and a political market flooded with Super PAC dollars, there’s plenty of business to be had.

At C&E’s Art of Political Campaigning seminar, we asked Democratic consultant Michael Bronstein for some tips on honing the pitch.         

C&E: What makes a good pitch?

Bronstein: First, you need some type of service that you’re providing to the client where they see an immediate need. Whether it be media, whether it be mail, whether it be polling –– things that are immediately identifiable. You should play to your strength in the pitch. The more problems that your prospective client sees you being able to solve with your firm, and the more differentiation you’re able to make during the pitch, the more likely you are to actually succeed in signing a client.  

C&E: In terms of networking, what’s the best way to stand out?

Bronstein: It’s important to remember that not everyone you meet will have an immediate need for your service, and not everybody that wants to meet you is necessarily is going to be a service that you want to use for a campaign. But it’s still extremely important to develop the relationship. In networking, you shouldn’t necessarily be thinking about what you can do for somebody else, you’ll actually be more successful if you try to figure out what you can do for somebody else. If they have a problem that you can help them solve, they will be much more likely to help you out down the line.  

C&E: Are there new avenues for business this cycle that you haven’t seen in the past?

Bronstein: There are certainly new avenues this cycle. The general mix, though, is essentially the same as the strategists who sit around the table. If you’re offering media, mail, polling, finance, opposition research—things of this nature, the traditional media sources are all around the table this cycle. But there has been a growth in the Internet space and that non-traditional media is definitely going to continue to grow over time and over the next couple of cycles. It means more opportunity for people who have expertise outside the traditional areas that campaigns look for.    

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Garrett Mays

Thank you for the insight! I am new to business development at a large contact center in Erie, PA and transitioning from selling products that give you instant gratification to a sale that takes time and considerably more effort has been tough to adjust to. Our center is focusing efforts on finding new clients who could use our advanced infrastructure and talented representatives to reach voters. In the political space I have found it difficult to pin down who to speak with (candidates, campaign managers, consultants etc.) Any thoughts?

Michael Bronstein

Hi Garrett,
Thanks for your question. The answer to your question of 'who you should speak with' to expand your services is a good one. I would start with the American Association of Political Consultants. Go to an event and make some contacts. It's a good place to refine your pitch, get advice and build a client base. I know that Erie is a bit of a hike from Philadelphia, but the mid-Atlantic AAPC chapter is doing a reception on July 19th. It's a good place to start the conversation with other consultants.
Michael Bronstein

Garrett Mays

Thank you again Michael! Philadelphia here I come!

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