Let’s stop beating around the bush. If you’re reading this blog you have to know upfront that marketing is a tough and overcrowded trade to enter. In fact, you would have to beat 87,712 agencies and 151,068 independent contractors in the US to the punch. We won’t sugarcoat and tell you straight away that this will need a lot of work, so take note of the following advice – from one marketing guru to another:
Get Expertise in a Niche Market
As counter-intuitive as it sounds, the best approach is to start small with niche marketing. Competing overhead with the majority of agencies can make your brand go under the radar so it would be best to hyper-specialize in marketing for a niche industry.
By hyper-specializing, your agency can pick a niche and retrofit your services from there. It begins with the understanding that – say for argument’s sake – the marketing needs of a retail client would not be the same as those of a banking client. So enter the scene being an expert for marketing in a niche industry of your choice.
As for choosing a niche, make sure you have your eyes peeled for the trends. A good example is a clamor for sustainability. The demand for more eco-friendly products is increasing as the new decade progresses. However, as we see this happening, we hardly see any large-scale marketing experts that have specialized in the sustainability scene.
Of course, it does not end in choosing a niche, too. Make sure you really do have the credentials to back it up. Put work into the idea and provide some hard evidence to back it up. Nothing works better than a client portfolio, so if you have one, showcase it!
Don’t Be Afraid To Ask for Help
Let’s face it, you can’t run a company alone. You’d always need other people for their expertise, services, or maybe for just a tap in the back when things get tough.
The hiring pool is buzzing with other young professionals who are looking for someone with a vision. Do not hesitate to dive into the painstaking hiring process to select the right person for the job. Also, remember when we asked you to pick a niche? It would benefit you more if you could hire a certified expert in the subject matter.
You can also choose to secure a partnership deal with trusted industry leaders. For starters, a publisher deal is a good starting point with some offering cheaper inventories. Going back to our earlier example, a sustainable brand would definitely benefit from a brand deal with an inventory-rich eco-tourism digital magazine. It’s up to you to play your cards right in the area of partnerships.
Network Your Heart Out
A done deal would be a far cry without any hands to shake, so go out there and find your clients. Conventions, trade shows, and networking events take place here and there for you to market your brand’s expertise, and we encourage you to take on one.
But don’t be too hard on yourself when it comes to these events. The ultimate goal is the agency’s exposure and for your brand to get a headstart on the competition. Once word gets out, then it’s time to take it up a notch for the next step:
Handle Your Clients With Care
Let’s say you did finesse your way to a new client’s heart. The obvious wrong answer is to leave it at that – a closed deal. Work, of course, does not end there. Being a new agency, you have to prove yourself worthy of the client’s trust. Make sure you get the results they asked for. Overdeliver if you must.
It also helps if you’re responsive. Leaving your new clients hanging for quite some time is not ideal especially if there are immediate concerns. Truth is this should be an easy fix, especially for start-ups with a tight budget to afford in-house executive assistants. There are software out there that can churn out custom-made replies for all types of client concerns. Even niftier, some platforms work on two-way SMS messaging systems that can seamlessly integrate your phone number to your email, or even to the chatbots on your agency website. Off the top of our minds, Ringbot.io is one of the best bets out there to make sure you’re not missing out on important client conversations.
Generate Revenue Beyond Your Marketing Agency Work
Setting up marketing campaigns, reviewing analytics, and meeting with clients takes a ton of work. Like attorneys, or even people flipping burgers at the local fast food restaurant, you’re basically getting paid by the hour. If you don’t work, you don’t make money.
But you only have so many hours in the day.
The answer is to find a way to make money when you’re not working. A white-labeled SaaS product is a great way to do this. You don’t have to build the product, you just license it and re-sell it to the clients you already have. This way you add monthly recurring revenue that you don’t have to continually work for. It’s the best way for marketing agencies to scale.
So are you ready to launch your agency now?
Stop waiting for the right opportunity to come along. With the tips listed above and some faith, you have more chances of becoming the next Steve Jobs than now. Just don’t forget to ask for a little help every now and then, whether from a mentor or from some trusted software like Ringbot.io. We’re rooting for you!