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We’ve been working on an RFP. Normally, we don’t respond to them, but this one seems to be something we’re exactly suited for. Last week we had to submit questions, the answers to which were posted today. The format let us look at all the questions from all the agencies, and the answers to all of the questions. It was very telling.

The questions were as interesting as the answers (although ultimately not as important). There were a couple of trends.

There were people like us, who wanted to dimensionalize the assignment, so we could know how to respond to the RFP. A couple of people asked about media. With branding, it’s not a foregone conclusion that the client is looking for media planning or placement, so you have to ask. Of course, we think you should fold your media advertising into your branding, because it’s more efficient that way, and the media can be bundled (philosophically) with the message.

There were some people who wanted to try to use the question and answer process to influence the judges’ decision. That’s a long shot as I see it. If somebody is going to wield unfair influence, it has already been wielded before the RFP even goes out. But ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

Then there were some questions from little players who don’t seem to even have a firm handle on what branding is. One guy even asked if his complete lack of experience in the category would be held against him. Excuse me, but Duh!

And finally, there were a few goofball questions, out of left field. I actually asked one of those, just to see how they would respond.

The responses were pretty good. Whoever answered the questions had a personality. A little curmudgeonly. A little grumpy. A little quippy. But informative. They answered the questions. That’s for sure.

All of this tells us something about who we’re dealing with. It’s gonna be a fun one to chase down. I kinda hope we get it.

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