Free-pitching devalues design industry’s credibility

In answer to Andrew Thomas (Letters, DW 9 August), if anyone in our industry believes we can regulate free-pitching I would like to meet them. While there are clients who will continue to request free-pitches, there will always be design companies prepared to undertake the project.

Free-pitching can often offer so many opportunities and deliver so much disruption to your company. As a young, fast-growing company with an aggressive approach to new business, we often find the offer to work for a new client too tempting.

However, over the past few months we have established resistance to jump at every opportunity as we believe that in the long run it will only devalue what we do and the credibility of our industry.

It is up to the design community to educate clients and maybe not jump at every opportunity. After all, the only reason companies have a large number of creative solutions presented to them for free is because we as an industry choose to participate.

At Creative Action we allocate a set number of days per year for pitches. This level is set as part of our investment in our new business strategy and is budgeted for on the basis that taking on free-pitches will not affect the overall objectives of the company.

This allows us to review the potential of any free-pitch situation, assess the time involved and make a commercial decision accordingly.

As an industry we are seeing a trend in exchanging equity in new ventures in return for free creative pitches. While this is not ideal in all cases, it is refreshing to see our industry addressing the commercial aspects of business as part of the decision-making process.

Ian Silverstein

Managing director

Creative Action

St Albans

Herts AL1 1ER

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