Agility is more than a buzzword when you’re faced with an impossible deadline.

Clients can be demanding. Everyone knows that. But given market pressures, more and more clients want their content marketing to be fast. Whatever you’re creating needed to be done yesterday. We’re hearing the word “agile” a lot. But agile is just another word for “do it quickly.” Being nimble is not just an asset now, it’s a necessity.

We challenge ourselves and our teams to be smart and creative. And efficient. But even with tons of experience, and the confidence that comes with it, it is still a bit nerve-wracking to be asked to respond to an RFP and craft a creative proposal (and win the project) in… one day.

This is exactly what we were tasked with in pitching a unique branding concept for a new onboard store for a major international airline. When confronted with this task, the first thing you think is: how the hell are we supposed to do it? We don´t have time to draw beautiful ideas and/or products. This is an impossibly compressed timeframe. But “no” was not an option. And the lack of time really focussed our attention.

Our mantra was: let’s win this, be as creative as possible, and prove something to our client by showing how agile we are.

How did we do it? We made sure we demonstrated our thought process and strategic chops so they understood how we think. We showcased our best past work, the scale and range of our past, present and potential work, and that we weren’t intimidated by an impossible timeline (and we never did we call it impossible). We took it as a compliment; proof that the client needed us, and so we wanted to prove that we understood the client’s needs. What else is an RFP?

The day was stressful and full of adrenaline. We focused our creativity to build a strong pitch, and we didn’t let the stress stop us from having fun while creating our proposal. That, combined with the discipline in the room (we were stuck in a room all day – another key: drown out the noise!) heightened our focus.

The end result: we won the business over some very good agencies by being – as the client said– bold, by showing out-of-the-box ideas, and doing this in just a couple of slides. (Another key: keep the presentation short and to the point). We did what was possible in the time allotted. Like I said, that lack of time focusses the mind. And turned mission impossible into mission accomplished.