Like most new business agencies we are often asked about conversion rates; both our own and those of our clients. Manifest has been in business since 1992 in the UK, 2005 in the US and has also just set up in Australia. We monitor both our own and our client’s success rates, taking standard deviations into consideration.
We divide new business into what we call the “Upstream” process and the “Downstream” process. The upstream is everything that happens prior to the first face-to-face interaction with the prospective client whilst the downstream is obviously therefore everything that happens post first meeting.
Both processes have three steps and they are as follows;
Step 1 – Make a contact attempt
Step 2 – Engage with the prospect
Step 3 – arrange a meeting
Step 1 – Meet the prospect
Step 2 – Submit a proposal / answer a brief
Step 3 – Win the business.
We know that for every 100 calls made, ten prospects will be spoken to and for every ten spoken to one will convert into a qualified meeting (see other post for definition of a ‘qualified meeting’).
For every four meetings our clients attend they should submit one proposal and for every three proposals submitted they win a new client.
We believe that our attention to delivering truly qualified meetings means that our (Upstream) conversion rates are not as great as those suggested by other new business agencies but feel this is justified by our clients’ superior (Downstream) conversion rates.