HOW TO START YOUR OWN DIGITAL MARKETING AGENCY ?
Acquire brands faster than your competition using this guide
Acquire more clients for your agency
This is an online age. You book cinema tickets online, you book food online, and you conduct your financial transactions online. So, you should be doing your marketing online as well. Is it not better to build your own digital marketing agency? Are you confused? You should not be because we will discuss these issues in detail.
The marketing guru Seth Godin has said, “Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories that you tell.” This is perfectly true in today’s scenario. We will look at how to build your own digital marketing agency keeping these points in mind.
Building a marketing agency is similar to constructing a building. You need to have a strong foundation. If your basics are strong, you can build your agency without fearing that it will crash down one day. Once you are done away with your foundation, we go on building the floors. Finally, you set a price for your apartment. Digital marketing is similar in almost all respects. So, let us concentrate on the basics initially.
Have a strong foundation
Develop a positive attitude
Remember the logic, “You can, if you think you can.” At the same time, understand that the road is not so easy. You have to slog your way through at the initial stage. A positive attitude will go a long way in keeping you focused on the job on hand. Yes, you may fail on many an occasion. Should you lose heart? Of course, you should not because you might not know where you will start getting successes. Believe me. Success can be addictive. One can lead to another and suddenly you would find the Midas touch. The key to doing so is perseverance and a positive attitude.
Have a clear goal in mind
How do you expect to win the match without scoring the goal? Hence, you should know what your goals are. You goal is to start your own digital marketing agency and ensure that you earn sufficient revenue. Plan one step at a time. Now, Rome was not built in a day. Your digital agency will also take some time to take off smoothly. In the meanwhile, you should keep plugging away with your goal in mind. Nothing is unachievable in this world. If you set your sights right, you will end up successful.
Go back to your management school training and recollect what setting up a SMART goal means.
Specific: Your objective should be specific and quantifiable.
Measurable: You should be able to measure the level of success when you achieve the goal.
Aspirational: It is better to aspire to be better than what you can do. This sets the bar higher.
Realistic: Understand that it will take time to achieve your objective. You will not attain success overnight.
Time-bound: Have a specific time frame in mind and adhere to it.
Focus on your strengths
When we ask you to focus on your strengths, you should concentrate on doing what serves your prospective customer the best. Knowing your audience is the trick to succeed. In the initial stages, you would like to please every client because it is better for you economically. Once you establish your agency, you should know where your priorities lie. This could entail letting go of some clients if they do not fit into your focus. This will determine your niche and help you to be the best at what you wish to do.
Build a strong network
What is business without a semblance of customer relationship? You cannot afford to do it especially when you are in the marketing field. You need to build up relationships with customers. Maintaining them is more important because you will need their services at a later stage. They can act as your brand ambassadors and attract more clients for you.
Determine your brand identity
Remember the customer knows you by the brand name. There are people who still shop by the brand name irrespective of the fact that a better product might be available. You should have it in you to cater to this category of customers. Building up your brand identity is the first step towards creating a lasting impression on the minds of your customer.
Never be afraid to innovate
You need to take risks in order to succeed. One of the golden rules of risk management is that ‘not taking a risk is the biggest risk of all’. But, you should be able to measure your risk. Be innovative in your thoughts. Be open to receiving ideas from your well-wishers. You never know where the spark can come from. Resist the temptation to imitate other agencies. Being innovative can help you achieve your objective.
Take it forward from here
You have taken pains to create a strong base. The time is now ripe to move ahead and set up your own digital marketing agency. The following tips can help you in this regard.
Design an appealing and compelling website
It goes without saying that you need a strong and compelling website to attract customers. Concentrate on the web design. You can get a lot of free WordPress themes to make a beginning. Many businesses have succeeded with the simplest of designs. Ensure that your design is easily navigable. Creating a strong user experience is the key to success today. Google and other search engines place a lot of emphasis on websites that provide for a great UX factor. A mobile-friendly website is the need of the hour. Google showers special attention on websites having a strong mobile presence.
Your portfolio should do the talking
Remember what Seth Godin had said. Your portfolio should say it all. It is your window to the world. Your customers judge your performance based on your portfolio. Therefore, it is imperative for any digital marketing agency to have a sound portfolio. Some of the ingredients of an excellent portfolio are as follows.
a) It should be crisp with attractive headlines and short snippets.
b) You can include in-depth case studies if they suit your niche
c) Testimonials from clients should find a prominent place in your portfolio
d) Include your future goals and targets that you have set for clients
Delivering results is important, but delivering them on a continuous basis is essential.
Set your finances right
Investment is a very important aspect of any business. There are digital marketing agencies that have started their business with abysmally low amounts. They have succeeded as well. Hence, it is important to make maximum use of the resources you have in hand. It is not necessary to buy all the expensive SEO tools at the first instance. It might turn out that you would never use it. Hence, prudence should take over from exuberance. This will serve you well in the long run.
You would need finances to manage a lot of expenses. They include advertising, scouting customers, and providing good customer service. You have to balance your expenses well. You might need adequate finance at a later stage. If you are able to manage with cheaper labor at this stage, you should do so.
Plan out your workforce
In the initial stages, you might be able to manage your agency single-handedly. However, as you proceed, you will need people to help you out at various levels. Otherwise, you would risk stagnation. You will not be able to improve beyond a particular point. Your objective is to touch a six-figure mark as far as turnover is concerned. Remember, you cannot do this alone. Two heads are always better than one. You have a tremendous workforce out there in the market. You can enlist the services of a full-time or a part-time employee to help you run the business. Today, people are also available on a freelance basis. You can always utilize the expertise of your employees if you manage to pick up the right one.
Update your SEO skills from time to time
SEO is ever-changing. You find SEO trends changing practically every day. Brushing up on your SEO skills is vital. The best aspect of SEO is that you can learn while on the go. But, one should have a strong foundation of how SEO works. You will learn as you proceed further in business.
Communicate with your client in the language he understands
Many digital marketing agencies have the habit of using SEO-lingo while communicating with their clients. You clients care a damn about what alt-tags or meta-tags are. All he wants is that your efforts should produce the results for him. Hence, take time to understand what your clients want and explain to him in the language he understands. You can explain to him that you have updated the images and content on Google in such a way that his customers will be able to search for them easily.
Join the social media bandwagon
It is sacrilege today to find any business not having a presence on social media. Ensure that you have a presence in all social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. Each of these channels requires different types of marketing. The advantages of using social media for your marketing are many.
a) It is free. You are able to share your blogs and images to attract people towards your products.
b) Engaging with a wide range of customers is possible. You can engage with your friends who in turn can bring in new contacts for you. This enables you to widen your circle without much of an effort. This is what marketing is all about.
c) Lead generation is easy on the social media.
Optimization is the key
Understand that your customer has to find out the content on the search engine. This requires you to optimize your SEO campaign by including the perfect keywords. Optimizing your content is most important for you to rank on the first page of the SERPs. Understand that nobody searches on the second page of Google unless he is desperate to get information.
The Final Touches
Have a reporting strategy in place
Your clients need to get regular feedback on what you are doing. Hence, you should be reporting the completion of every stage of work assigned to you. This also helps to keep track of your progress. Have a backup of all your data so that you can recover the same in an emergency.
Place a value on your services
Remember there is no such concept of a free lunch. You are there to serve people, but not for free. You should be able to demand your price. Understand your worth and price your services accordingly. You might start out at a low price to attract the initial clients. But, you should not hesitate to increase the prices accordingly as you start finding better clients. There are agencies that have set very high benchmarks. If you are capable of delivering high-quality services, there should not be any problem in charging your clients accordingly.
Your foundation is ready and so is your structure. It is time to apply the final touches to your campaign now.
Your accounting and invoicing skills matter
You have various book-keeping tools available in the market to keep track of your income and expenses. You need to put this aspect in proper perspective because you have to adhere to various statutory liabilities like paying tax, salaries to employees, interest to banks, etc. At the end of the day, you should have something to show for all the efforts you have taken.
Plan for the future
Have a budget in mind when you prepare your forecast for the following years to come. This is an important aspect of your SMART goals. Managing your finances becomes easy when you have an actionable budget. Now, no one can stop you from setting up your own digital agency and earning a six-figure sum as well.
We have seen twenty aspects of building up your own digital marketing agency from scratch. You have done the hard work. Keep it up for the rest of your career. Update your knowledge from time to time. Your systems would also require regular updating to be able to move in synchronization with the latest trends in the market.