Pentagram's recent unveiling of the Natural History Museum's new ident raised a few eyebrows when it was revealed that they competed with over 270 agencies in a pitch process for the work. According to a recent study by the PM Society, the average cost to an agency of a pitch for a £200,000 project is around £40k - which estimates the Natural History Museum cost the design industry a staggering £10.8m in the pitch process alone.
"...the average cost to an agency of a pitch for a £200,000 project is around £40k - which estimates the Natural History Museum cost the design industry a staggering £10.8m in the pitch process alone..."
Don't get me wrong, it's a lovely piece of brand work, but was it worth the cost to our industry?
I understand that it's supposedly a part of the grind these days, but should it be? If you don't stand up for what's right, you become as bad as everyone else. I understand the idea that, if you don't do it, someone else will - but surely if you value your own work, your industry, your craft - you'd protect it, and ask for the respect it deserves.
Companies like Pentagram have an incredible portfolio, case studies and the prestige NOT to have to pitch for work - furthermore, when giants such as Pentagram bend to a client's will like this, they give clients all the power to continue to ask for this as a practice. If we don't respect our time, efforts and craft, how can we expect anyone else to?
Why is this acceptable in our industry? Would a plumber even bother turning up to your house if he knew 3 other plumbers were attending the same job and only one would get paid? Not a chance.
It's a matter of integrity for our industry. Every time we do this, we devalue our services. We devalue our craft.
I am curious about how people view free pitching. Is it a necessary part of the industry, or should we come together to protect our profession? Please share your thoughts over on my LinkedIn here