Emmet O'Hanlon of DDB South Africa discusses the collaborative Telkom pitch process and what winning the account meant for them... (video)
The pitch that won Telkom SA for DDB "...was a different pitch in that it was a collaborative one," says O'Hanlon. Most often, advertising agencies are presented with a pitch brief, they spend two to three weeks working on it and then go back to the client with a solution that has a 50-50 chance of making it through. This pitch was different in that Enzo Scarcella (CMO for Telkom) stated that he specifically wanted to collaborate with the shortlisted agencies. This did not mean that they were given the answers, but it did mean that Scarcella was available for consultation and guidance as far as the general direction of the pitch went.
Coming out of this pitch process with Telkom in the bag, O'Hanlon says that he would recommend that all clients work like this with agencies on pitches, because they are then far more likely to come out with work that can be used post the pitch process.
No pitch consultant in Telkom's pitch process...
O' Hanlon explains why a pitch consultant was not employed in this Telkom process, "Enzo is a very experienced marketer, very in-tune with the ACA and all the agencies. This guy knows the industry as well as any body who is actually in the industry." He continues that the entire pitch process was flawless.
Telkom's tipping point - and DDB is there to see it
It doesn't take a whole lot of market research to reveal that the Telkom brand has endured some challenging times. That being acknowledged, O'Hanlon says that today's Telkom, much like DDB, is all about the people. He continues that it all comes down to having "...the right people, in the right places, doing the right job." In the light of industry heavyweights like Sipho Maseko and Enzo Scarcella entering the organisation, O'Hanlon is confident that things are going to be done differently and are going to improve substantially. (A fact that is already evident in Telkom's robust, rising share price.)
It was for this reason that DDB was extremely keen to go after Telkom - without reservation. "The kind of briefs coming from Telkom ...suggests that Telkom is really going places".
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