Have you ever caught yourself saying something like “I do social media for companies, but I don’t really look at my own channels!” or “I build websites for my clients, but please don’t judge mine as it needs to be redone!” As agencies, sometimes the work we’re best at for clients is the work we’re worst at doing for ourselves.
When it comes to winning new clients, agencies often forget the importance of marketing ourselves. Looking for new clients means it’s time to roll up our sleeves and put in the work.
The quest for agencies to get new clients is a constant one. Unfortunately, it can get put on the back burner when your current workload feels overwhelming. We know how it goes. You might have a solid agency marketing strategy rolling when client work is light, but as soon as the strategy starts becoming successful, efforts get diverted to new client tasks.
This means that marketing language, creative, and even website copy might be out-of-date when it comes time to brush off those old strategies and start rounding up new leads.
Luckily, we have some go-to ideas for agencies to start attracting new clients. If you’re ready to ramp up business, here are some strategies for landing new prospects consistently.
1. Improve Your Inbound Marketing
If leads are coming in too slowly, focusing on your inbound marketing strategy could be the answer. Offering helpful content like whitepapers, webinars, and blogs that cover topics related to your business (like this one!) is one way to start attracting customers to come to you.
An inbound marketing strategy is most successful when it’s consistent. That means regularly creating new content or updating older assets. Your company is constantly evolving and so are the needs of your customers. Re-using the same old content without addressing new product features or customer pain points will only get you so far.
Review the current content strategy and all content associated with the best-performing campaigns. Look at the top pieces that were bringing in views and leads and consider how to start promoting them again. Then take a look at any gaps in content for new services or features or customer conversation topics. It’s also a good idea to review any automated email campaigns like welcome series or automated follow-ups to ensure that they’re still presenting the best information.
Keep your strategy consistent even when clients are flowing in but making yourself a client and assigning someone to be accountable for the company marketing strategy. More than just blog posts and social media, it’s an investment in an ongoing exposure and lead generation campaign.
2. Review the Customer Journey
Okay, the newly reviewed inbound marketing strategy is working so more leads are coming in. But those leads still aren’t turning into sales as quickly as you’d like. The next step is to take a look at what’s happening to your customers after the marketing wins them over.
Too often we forget that a campaign isn’t just the customer-facing message, it’s also the experience the customer has once they are actually having a 1:1 interaction with the business. If it seems like you have a good number of leads but a low number of conversions, go through the customer journey as a customer would.
Going through this process allows us to see where it can be optimized so that leads become happy customers quickly. Check each step in the process every time a lead interacts with your company. If they fill out a form, are they greeted with an auto response? If they are entered into an email drip series, do they receive different messaging if they don’t open an email? What does the hand-off process look like from marketing to sales? Look for all the little opportunities to entice the customer along the way.
3. Deliver a Value Promise
These days, client acquisition is data-driven. Clients are less and less impressed with portfolios showcasing work and more interested in seeing what value that work delivered for your clients. Your leads are trying to decide where to dedicate their dollars and sometimes very tight budgets. Show them how working together will be worth their while.
Develop a few case studies that focus on how your work helped a client grow or achieve their goals. If your business is too new for a case study, try highlighting data on what can happen for a business if they focus on XYZ by working with your agency. This doesn’t mean making false promises, it means educating on how important these services are.
4. Maximize Lifetime Customer Value
Between attracting new leads and nurturing warm leads, who has time to upsell current customers? This is where a strong strategy and great tools work together to create a powerful marketing engine. You can use marketing automation to create ongoing email drip campaigns that inform and upsell your current clients on new services. Or create a series that informs your audience on industry-specific news, reminding them that you are an expert in this space when they have a question.
This doesn’t mean raising prices or adding lots of new services. It means adding value for your current clients to build revenue while also establishing trust. Talk to your current clients and find out how things are going and where they are still having a hard time. These meetings can help uncover opportunities to expand your current scope.
Marketing automation can be really helpful here in setting reminders for account owners to check in at regular intervals or using an email drip series to automate quarterly customer surveys.
5. Partner With Another Agency
This might sound counterintuitive, but you’ve already seen it working! Word-of-mouth and referrals are still some of the most successful forms of marketing because if you trust a business and ask them for a recommendation, you’re likely to trust that business too.
Of course, to avoid competing against yourself, it’s best to partner with an agency that offers a complimentary service that your customers also often need. For example, a copywriting agency might partner with a graphic design agency because their clients often need graphics with their articles. It’s beneficial for everyone involved; the agencies get consistent work and the client is getting work they are happy with.
Partnering with an agency also doubles up your marketing power since your audiences will overlap, you can create shared assets for whitepapers and webinars to pull in a broader audience.
It’s time to invest in yourself! Treat yourself like your own client and assign a team to the marketing strategy. Create a schedule for a regular strategy review and status reporting to keep growth off the backburner. To keep a regular flow of new clients coming in it’s important to keep the cycle of creation, review and optimization going. Of course, that’s easier said than done when growth is concerned. Investing in marketing automation now would help to save time while creating a robust, automated inbound marketing strategy that can continue to deliver qualified leads even when you’re not looking for them.