Integrated Digital Marketing Services make the proposal clearer to the end customer, in addition to valuing the contracts signed with the agency; see steps to sell this way.
In a scenario of an economic crisis, in which companies cut costs, prioritize actions and reduce the team and suppliers, it is essential that your agency is able to place its service in the client’s priority list. You must show that the Digital Marketing services offered by the agency are an investment by the client, not an expense.
Therefore, it is important to be concerned with delivering real results to clients and proving the ROI ( return on investment ). One of the attractions of offering Inbound Marketing services is precisely the possibility of being able to prove each Digital Marketing action in real numbers.
If your agency manages to escape the cost center view and become a strategic partner of the client, there is a good prospect of establishing a faithful relationship between the parties. Inbound Marketing meets these needs and is what will help your agency earn recurring revenue.
If you are tired of having one-off Digital Marketing projects and not being able to prove the value of your services to your customers, read on. In it, you will check:
- Why You Should Provide Digital Marketing Services in an Integrated Way
- How to Sell Digital Marketing Services the Right Way
- How to identify if your customers are ready for Inbound Marketing
- How to prospect customers for digital
- How to Offer Inbound Services to Digitally Immature Customers
- The main challenges for those who provide Digital Marketing services and how to overcome them
- Bonus: 3 service options your agency can offer to help your client sell more
Why You Should Provide Digital Marketing Services in an Integrated Way
Through our new business consultants aimed at marketing agencies, Blue World City realized that one of the biggest challenges in the sector is the difficulty of selling Digital Marketing services in a structured and integrated way. Most do it all, but not in an integrated way.
This ends up generating several negative consequences, such as:
- Difficulty in proving ROI and reporting;
- Sale of punctual services, with a low average ticket;
- Low customer loyalty;
- The low value of contracts, with a high probability of future cancellation.
Digital Marketing Services that are not integrated, under the perception of the end customer, end up becoming something punctual and disconnected from the reality they experience in their daily lives and the expectations they have in relation to Digital Marketing strategies. Consequently, the results are lost, loose, with and unclear measurements.
If your agency signs a contract for a stand-alone service, such as social media management, what type of report will it submit? Just vanity metrics like likes and followers? Or the number of impressions and boost that a given paid media action caused?
Well, if your customer decides to ask a single question – ” what was the result in sales of all these actions?” – you may be in trouble.
Most agencies in situations like this tend to be left without a clear answer. Therein lies the great risk of not selling Digital Marketing services in an integrated manner: the chances of having a contract canceled or the monthly fee being reduced are very high.
But then, how to sell Digital Marketing services correctly?
This is where the great advantage of offering an Inbound Marketing strategy comes in. With this methodology, you can work from the attraction stage to customer retention. In other words, Inbound makes it possible for you to offer services that encompass every step of the sales funnel. And that’s where the secret of integrated digital services lies.
When we think about how agencies work with their clients, we find some weaknesses ineffective results generation and, unfortunately, many of them are directly linked to the sales funnel.
We will first attract visitors. Then convert them to Leads. Next, create and nurture the relationship until they become concrete sales opportunities. And finally, analyze the results obtained.
And what to do with those Leads that didn’t turn into customers? On Inbound, they return to the nutrition flow until they become a new opportunity/sale again.
A suggested basic package that agencies can start with contains the following services:
- Between 4 and 8 blog posts;
- 1 rich content to define (eBook, webinar, infographic);
- Construction of Landing Page for Lead generation;
- Promotion of rich content via Email Marketing and social networks (with investment in paid media);
- Nutrition/automation flows.
Inbound’s proposal is for your agency to be able to deliver more and more concrete results to its clients, gradually adding new Digital Marketing services in an integrated manner.
But before going out there offering Inbound Marketing services, you need to keep a few things in mind.
Are my customers ready for Inbound Marketing?
First of all, this question must be answered.
To do this, start looking at the investments your client portfolio makes in Digital Marketing. You can do a profile analysis of your customers and start by answering the following questions:
- Do they already have an updated website?
- Does the site have an active blog with at least 2 blog posts per week?
- Already make monthly investments in paid media?
- Do you actively use social networks and already recognize and interact with the persona through these networks?
- Do you already know how to adapt the best strategy to your client’s business model?
These are just a few questions that can help you understand if inbound marketing would work for the companies your agency serves.
If after answering the above questions you feel that it is not yet time to offer Inbound Marketing to your customers, it is time to prospect and sell!
How to prospect digital-ready customers?
Understand: each prospect has a type of approach. You will notice that prospects who come as a referral or are in your network of contacts need a totally different approach to the opportunity coming from inbound.
Regardless of the channel, if you want more prepared customers who will probably allow you a fee increase, pay attention to your ICP (Ideal Customer Profile). Your prospects need to meet the profile you set as ideal.
In case the prospecting has not happened yet, Inbound is a great way to understand if the contact has the right profile for your strategy. Use in your emails and Landing Pages questions like:
- What is your company’s website?
- What is the number of employees in your company?
- Do you make monthly investments in Digital Marketing?
- Do you already have a CMS platform integrated into the website?
Is it time to approach the Lead? There are a few tools that can enhance your research and bring you crucial information about the prospect even before the first meeting:
- Mozbar (plugin): very useful for SEO analysis. This plugin makes an analysis of the websites visited. Through it, it is possible to observe how others work on optimization techniques. Thus, parameters are generated to apply to the site itself.
- SEMrush (website): Like Mozbar, SEMrush also does domain-based SEO analysis. Through the free analysis, it is possible to monitor: number of hits on the site in recent months, comparison of hits between mobile and desktop, traffic sources, and much more. Before your first meeting with your prospect, be sure to use this feature to arrive armed with information.
- SimilarTech Prospecting (plugin): SimilarTech Prospecting is clearly a tool for prospecting customers. It aggregates very relevant information such as website traffic, technologies used, and even possible contacts linked to the domain.
If you are already in contact with the Lead, take a few steps back and make a good briefing with him. This briefing will help you understand if this client is at the time to invest in a good Inbound Marketing tool and boost results, or if he still needs strategic improvement.
Automation and marketing tools are essential to generate and evaluate results, however, when hired at the wrong time, they can generate doubts and insecurity regarding the strategy used and the investment made.
I found customers. What do they need to know before investing in a marketing automation tool?
If you’re going to work with Inbound, you need a good tool, preferably all-in-one. Without that, the work is really very difficult to be done. So when is the right time to convince your customer to invest in an automation tool? Sounds silly, but this question can save you a lot of heartaches.
There are indeed some basic points that must be aligned before your client decides to make a monthly investment in a Digital Marketing suite:
#1: Site Architecture
Yes, this is the moment when you need to analyze your client or prospect’s entire website, compare it to the competition and understand: Is it working well? Is it friendly? Does it take time to load? Are there any broken links? Is the home clear and directs you to the right places?
A good Digital Marketing strategy is complemented by a well-functioning website. It is proven that many customers visit your website to find out if your product/service offer is truthful or not. Prepare your customers’ website for these visits!
#2: Content and SEO
Before any tool comes to content, it’s the fuel that will keep your strategy running.
The first step is to ensure that the institutional contents of the website are clear and up to date. In addition, the site must have a CMS (Content Management System) platform, such as WordPress, linked to it. It is from this platform that your content will be posted, reviewed according to SEO best practices and constantly updated.
The 2017 Content Trends survey shows that companies that make at least 13 pieces of content per month get 4.2 times more visits on the site, so focus on the consistency and quality of your content.
#3: Media investment
Yes, Inbound Marketing also needs investments in paid media. Especially if we are talking about a company that is still very immature digitally.
Already included in your contract an exclusive value for investment and paid media management. They will accelerate your results and ensure your strategy starts running more efficiently.
#4: Social media optimization
Many agencies offer the “Social Media Management” service, however, I see few bring results through such powerful channels. According to data from Exame last year, more than 68% of the Brazilian population is present and active on social networks, which is why it is so important to produce relevant and appropriate content for the format of each platform.
The golden tip here is to build links within your own networks and your own website. Something that helps a lot in the evolution of the site within search engines is the backlinks, links strategically placed on your networks, blog posts, and publications in general that direct the reader to your site or blog.
Oh, and don’t forget to direct people who visit the customer’s Instagram or Facebook page to their website! This is a simple strategy that will greatly help your online authority.
#5: Basic Technologies
I know what you might be thinking: “But you just told me to wait before investing in tools and technologies!” Calm down, the good news is that below we bring only free technologies that can be integrated into your clients’ website and assist in the Digital Marketing strategy.
- Insert YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram plugins on your website. They bring your audience closer to you and ensure they are always connected to your business;
- Use the Google Maps script to make it easier for people to find your point of sale;
- Use Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager for website monitoring;
- Use WordPress Leads and Calls-to-Action to capture Leads and direct them;
- Turbocharge your WordPress SEO strategy with the Yoast plugin;
- Reduce your website loading time with W3 Total cache;
- Enable comments on your blog with Disqus;
- Use Contact Form 7 to create contact forms on your website;
- Have your sitemap handy with Google XML sitemaps;
- Don’t leave any more broken links with Broken Link Checker;
The tools above will help your client to improve positioning and authority in the website domain, in other words: He will be ready to start a more robust Inbound strategy and marketing automation!
Well, so far we’ve been talking about clients already prepared for an Inbound strategy. But…
How to provide Digital Marketing services in digitally immature companies?
If you have clients who aren’t that prepared yet, calm down. It is also possible to create an action plan for them.
There are many reasons why people hire your Digital Marketing services, but we have to remember that they hire for their reasons, not yours. Here’s how important it is to enter your prospects’ world!
As such, the two biggest reasons for a person to hire or not to hire are the desire for gain and the fear of loss.
What would this prospect be gaining from closing with your agency? And if it doesn’t, what would be the consequences?
For a digitally immature person, we need to understand that results are more important than means. Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how it is done, but what the gain will be.
Below are 5 tips (and tasks!) for getting started with immature prospects.
1. Create a language that makes sense
Inbound Marketing. Inside Sales. Facebook Ads. IF THE. CRO. Google AdWords. KPI. CTA. TOFU. MOFU. BOFU. Lead Webinar. How many cool expressions do you use in your agency’s daily life!
But how about adapting the language so that all parties understand what is going on?
Many agencies fail to present the first business proposal to an immature prospect precisely because they don’t pay attention to this point.
Remember: adapting the language is not putting yourself down, but showing signs of humility and empathy. If you want to reach an immature market, make your content accessible.
Task: Create a glossary of all terms and concepts used in your agency that are complex in character, with simpler synonyms.
2. Define deliverables by period
A very common mistake happens when agencies dump all the services that can be provided at once. What was confusing is even more confusing!
A great tip is to separate the provision of services into onboarding and ongoing.
The onboarding is the kickoff. What does this prospect need to get started? An improved website? Implementing tools? How long will this take?
The next step we can call ongoing. This is where all the services provided in a more specific way come in. After all, what good would it be to sell relationship services with Leads if the site wasn’t done yet? It would be like wanting to take a corner kick before kick-off in a football match.
If that doesn’t fit, how about defining deliverables by month, quarter or quarter? Make your proposal tangible.
Task: after conducting the briefing with the prospect, separate what is onboarding and what is ongoing or define deliverables for a predefined period of time.
3. Increase the problem in the proposal
Now that we’ve talked about language and services, it’s time to think about the proposal.
The biggest challenge for the agency is to increase the problem that this prospect naturally has.
Let’s say his website was last updated over ten years ago. This is a problem! But what do they lose in this? What are competitors doing? If there are no competitors in the digital environment, how could they quickly become a reference?
The prospect may not be technically aware of the wonders of an SEO-optimized site, but they have to be aware of the implications of not having that site.
If necessary, rehearse the proposal presentation with an agency member who plays the role of “devil’s advocate” to measure the impact of the problem presented. If the “lawyer” says something like “my site is bad, but I survive with it…” something is wrong.
Task: in the proposal made, measure the size of the problem presented. How many slides are devoted to this and/or how much time is devoted to presenting the problem and its implications?
4. Be didactic: exemplify and demonstrate
Have you ever heard the story of a market professional who, in order to sell the idea of a drug that would bring great results to the pharmaceutical industry in the future, decided to… Go to the future?
The proposal was based on the “world in 2045 with the medicine on the market” and was told by a futuristic character who brought fears, anxieties, and insecurities.
Too bold? Perhaps. But it worked – and the presentation lasted 3 minutes!
Storytelling is not about services or products. The center is always human, it’s the people.
How can you tell a story that facilitates understanding, magnifies the problem, and brings a sense of urgency at the same time?
If you can bring these three elements together, as in the medicine example, you will probably hit the shot.
Task: in the proposal made, if you think it will bring good results, add some form of Storytelling.
5. Show an optimistic scenario for the future
Never forget to fully understand the prospect’s current situation. From that, we were able to have a long-term perspective.
Every company is able to grow and evolve further. And your agency has to show that the sky is the limit for this client.
The ROI projection can become concrete, even with the possibility of the agency working with a long-term success fee.
Task: Be sure to include an optimistic scenario in the proposal. The Marketing Funnel tool can help a lot.
How to overcome the main challenges of those who provide Digital Marketing services
While Inbound isn’t a biggie, as we’ve discussed before, you’ll likely encounter some challenges along the way. We map the main ones and propose solutions to follow.
#1: Grow and scale the number of customers
By far the most common challenge, closing more deals with recurring revenue and/or longer duration requires a balance between service and operation work and demand generation work (Marketing and Sales).
To deal with this challenge, there are some directions that can be taken. Among them, I put some that we have seen generate good results:
Implement a predictable and scalable demand generation model
Our motto is “blacksmith’s house, ninja sword in the window”. Structuring Digital Marketing actions at the agency itself to capture demand is a key point to have a machine for generating new clients. This involves understanding the buying journey that must be taken for the public to realize the value and how your offering fits their needs. Working Digital Marketing allows the flow of new business opportunities to be continuously growing.
Publish knowledge and lived experiences
Working with Content Marketing is very interesting, as we’ve discussed in other posts. Distilling what has been done, lived, is putting your main accreditation in the window: what you believe, do and learn. With this, your audience will already understand how your daily life is, how your work works and how much you really understand the subject. A better-informed public arrives more prepared for the moment of the commercial approach and has a greater potential to close larger and lasting services.
Standardize, optimize and automate marketing actions
So that this work of generating customers does not become too onerous, it is necessary to have the appropriate tools in hand so that the process is as automated as possible. Analyzing, planning, building and automating processes will allow you to work on generating qualified demand at the most suitable time for you and focus on production and delivery of services the rest of the time, without fear of scarcity of opportunities. See more about marketing automation, which can serve both as a service for your client and for the agency’s own marketing.
#2: Generate results for the customer
Everyone delivers something to their customer and calls it “result”. But what is his perception of value? How much are more site visitors, Facebook likes, Twitter followers worth? When it comes to cutting expenses and identifying those that do not bring financial returns, the Digital Marketing work focused on these vanity metrics will certainly be in the first place on death row.
To avoid this position, your best options are:
Take on the real marketing function
Generate business opportunities. Build, from communication strategies such as website, blog, social networks, ads and email marketing, the demand for your client’s products and/or services, properly delivering leads and sales opportunities to the client’s sales team.
Accountability with success metrics and return on investment
Focus on real results from your services, such as the number of qualified contacts, sales opportunities, Leads performance (in closing percentage, sales cycle time, average ticket) instead of just vanity metrics mentioned above. You must impact – positively – his pocket. With this, your client realizes how his work affects the commercial and invoicing results he has, as well as cost reduction and improvement in the team’s performance. Find out how to prove the ROI of your actions and check out a ready-made template for it.
#3: Increase revenue with each customer
There are some factors that prevent you from being able to raise the average ticket of your customers. What we have seen most frequently are the lack of perception of the value of the work performed (seeing Digital Marketing as an expense, not an investment), the services hidden within the offered package (work being carried out without due discrimination and consequent charge) and the immediacy of wanting to deliver results (whatever your client thinks that means).
To meet this challenge, we have the following solutions:
Construction and evolution of service packages
Making it clear to the customer what activities are planned within the service package, rather than “doing whatever it takes,” can help them begin to understand what needs to be done, as well as how much it is costing. Thus, you can evolve the package of services as you earn your customer’s trust, always demonstrating the difference in results that more in-depth work brings.
Customer involvement in strategy building
With your customer more involved, everything becomes easier. Applying the knowledge he has about the business and customers to the strategy, showing himself as a partner (not just an outsourcer) and demonstrating his expertise during decision-making has the potential to build credibility for his business and put him in a position of strategic business partner.
Integration between Marketing and Sales
Delivering business opportunities in an integrated and automated way to the sales area is already a good thermometer of the trust your customer places in you. In addition, this allows you to feed back the marketing process with information on which leads actually became sales, improving your work in generating them. Finally, clarifying opportunities for improvement in your customer’s sales process is another opportunity for you to act in his business.
In this kit, you can check out various materials to create synergy between your agency’s Marketing and Sales areas.
#4: Keeping up to date
With so much happening, it’s not always easy to stay ahead of the competition to continue being seen as a reference for your customers and employees. Even more with the constant storm of news and daily updates in the Digital Marketing universe. To facilitate this process, it is necessary to:
- Find constant and reliable sources of quality material, which are comprehensive without leaving the focus (nothing worse than separating the useful from the useless). Digital Results maintains a constantly renewed library of eBooks, webinars and templates that can build and maintain the knowledge necessary for the Inbound Marketing offer. Our partner agencies also have an exclusive calendar of training actions.
- Searching for online courses that can be useful in training the team can also help in terms of remaining attractive to employees who are motivated to be constantly learning. We also offer a set of courses focused on helping your team put the concepts of digital results marketing into practice.
We know that there are many challenges to be overcome in the Digital Marketing market, and that service providers in the area have a fundamental role in this scenario. Therefore, always count on us to continue paying attention to your context, your challenges, and help you along this path.
Bonus: 3 service options your agency can offer to help your client sell more
So far we have talked about the importance of providing Digital Marketing services in an integrated and results-oriented way. In closing, let’s go further. Below are examples of services you can offer to help your customer achieve even more business results.
1. Lead Management 2.0: Going beyond traditional lead management and qualification
Some customers cancel the contract simply because they don’t see value in the delivery or don’t understand what a qualified lead is for their sales team. Already faced with the question: generated Leads, now what?
It is basically the extension of the marketing work that allows you to close the loop and prove the end result, sales. RD itself saw that this is a path of no return and a great business opportunity by announcing the purchase of Plug CRM and the launch of RD Station CRM.
Going a little beyond Lead generation, you can act as a qualifying partner for those generated Leads, using techniques such as RD Station Marketing Lead Scoring.
From the moment you send these qualified Leads to the customer’s sales team, you can seek constant returns through integrations on sales performance to adjust the strategy.
The perception of delivery value will be much greater, you will be able to prove return on investments and show your client where you are doing right or even wrong to make the necessary adjustments.
You can charge for this service in two ways:
- Monthly Fee – An addition to the monthly fee to monitor this process between marketing and sales and perform monthly or quarterly results reviews.
- Success Fee – Charge per generated lead. Read more about this subject.
2. Lead Governance
If you want to sell more, you need to ensure that the leads being passed by the agency are being converted by your client’s sales team in real-time.
Provide follow-up of the business process:
- Creation of a business process;
- Creation and monitoring of performance metrics and KPI’s;
- CRM Setup;
- Sales Training;
The purpose of this service is to guarantee, in real-time, that the customer has everything he needs to carry out a good commercial process. Define input and output triggers for each sale step to ensure greater efficiency in converting the generated leads.
And of course, having access to won/lost leads to understanding the best channels and costs of acquiring new customers.
You can price this service as a one-off consulting model, that is, the service has a beginning, a middle and an end. Usually, this process takes 4-6 weeks to adjust, depending on each customer and segment.
3. Market intelligence
Use market intelligence and data analytics to enrich your knowledge of your customer’s target audience. The more information you have about your customers’ Leads, the greater your intelligence will be to offer solutions that help the customer to sell more.
Communicating your products and services reaches those who really matter and delivers the right message at every stage of that buyer’s journey, engaging them and generating solid sales opportunities.
The scope you can offer:
- Social Media Monitoring
Who is talking about your product/service?
What are they talking about about your product/service?
Where are they talking about your product/service?
Why are they talking about your product/service?
Persona and segment analysis is a super important phase of the qualified lead generation process. It is at this stage that we understand who the consumer is and what their main interests, desires and pains are, as this is the only way to reach the right people at the right time.
- Facebook Audience Study: There is a free Facebook tool that can help you understand the persona audience.
- Social CRM: interaction and service via social networks.
- ChatBots: Lead generation on social networks via bots (robots)
- Netnography: adaptation of the concept extracted from ethnography, which consists in carrying out a study of a certain audience in order to understand their behavior, beliefs and ethnicities.
- Landing Pages: extract rich data to enrich the sales team’s information: name, title, phone, corporate email, location, number of employees, billing, company size, investment potential and other information that makes sense for each customer.
Through a good value proposition construction, with a clear projection of a Sales Funnel, the valuation of Digital Marketing services will become more feasible in the eyes of the customer.
At the end of this entire process, you will have the answer to the famous question of most customers: “what was the result in sales of all these actions?”. And then, have no doubts: you will become his business partner.