The Hidden Agenda
Kevin Allen
bibliomotion books + media, April 2012

Each of us pitches ideas every day. Sometimes we sell our ideas to a small room full of skeptical colleagues. Sometimes we pitch to a boss, or a board of directors, a new organization, or for the contract of our dreams. Regardless, it all boils down to the act of stirring someone to join you—to agree to follow you. Yet we consistently underestimate how critical it is to recognize the needs, spoken and unspoken, of the decision maker. Decisions are made by people, and people have needs and agendas. Understanding these needs and agendas are critical to success in business. Kevin Allen’s approach is not about persuading, but about creating a connection that assures a mutual win.

Through his years of successfully pitching ideas, veteran ad man Allen has seen a pattern emerge: pitches aimed directly at the needs of the decision maker are winners. By recognizing the unspoken need of the decision maker, and connecting the pitch to that need, the likelihood of winning the sell is virtually assured. In The Hidden Agenda, Allen describes in practical terms an entirely new way to compel people to follow you and embrace what you are selling. The Hidden Agenda lays out concrete steps to identify the “who” you are reaching, “what” elements you can connect with, and “how” to connect with your audience with the end goal of simultaneously winning the sell and establishing an ongoing collaborative relationship.

This entertaining book moves at a rapid clip and is full of lively anecdotes of hard-won advertising campaigns. From Mastercard’s iconic “Priceless” campaign to Rudy Giuliani’s mayoral campaign, Kevin Allen has seen first-hand how to effectively find, connect, and speak to the Hidden Agenda to win business unfailingly, every time.

About the Author

Kevin Allen is a masterful pitchman and perhaps best known for leading the pitch team for Mastercard’s iconic “Priceless” campaign. For 20 years, he served on the front lines of business development with advertising giants McCann-WorldGroup and the Interpublic Group, and at Lowe Worldwide, where as Vice Chairman he helped the company gain Ad Age’s recognition as “Turnaround Agency of the Year” in 2009. Growing big global brands, including Citigroup, Nokia, Nestle, Deutsche Bank, Johnson & Johnson and Unilever has been the focus of his career. Now at the helm of KevinAllenPartners, a company dedicated to growth services, training and mentorship, his client list includes Omnicom, Swedbank, M&C Saatchi, Burberry and Smythson. A frequent speaker at advertising and marketing conferences, Kevin is also a visiting lecturer at the European Business School of Regents College London and Columbia University Graduate School of Business. A graduate of Dowling College, he holds a Certificate in Economics from Queen Mary College, University of London, and an MBA from Adelphi University.