For decades, companies from across the globe have been seeking ways to streamline their workflows, minimize repetitive tasks, and focus on what really matters for business development. Manufacturers use automatic equipment to speed up production, restaurateurs collect orders via apps and self-ordering systems, but is the automation of any help for a digital agency seeking to streamline lead generation?
The answer to this question is yes, and the solution to your needs is hidden within the article.
Read on to discover different automation strategies that will help you focus on marketing activities for your clients instead of marketing your agency itself. Here’s why and how.
Are you struggling with these?
First thing’s first: take a moment to analyze the current workflow in your digital marketing agency and identify the areas that require improvement. Here’s a list of the most prevalent hurdles that agencies face in their daily struggle to gain and retain clients:
- You attract leads, but they’re mostly unqualified;
- You have difficulties building brand recognition and trust towards your agency;
- You find it hard to rank for relevant keywords in search results, and SEO activities take hours of your team’s precious time;
- Your outreach process is time-consuming, and you barely keep up with regular follow-ups;
- Managing your current clients leaves you with no time for other tasks.
Do these symptoms sound familiar? Have you diagnosed deficiency in at least one of the listed areas? It’s a sign that your marketing agency needs automation to heal the lead acquisition process and win back your team’s precious time. Read on for instructions and recommendations.
Agency automation strategies for lead acquisition
Here’s how to gain and retain qualified leads hands-free.
Identify high-quality leads
Bare traffic is a vanity metric; it’s the qualified audience that truly matters for your business. Your best move is to cater solely to those likely to become your clients, even if it means cutting down heavily on traffic volumes.
The problem is that identifying and reaching out to high-quality leads is a full-time job. Luckily, some solutions will help you do that hands-free.
Before you start generating promising leads on autopilot, here’s one thing that you should do first: create a detailed client persona and make sure that all your lead-acquisition activities align with the needs and preferences of your desired audience.
Once you’re equipped with data, you’re ready to start automating processes:
- List your agency in a hub such as Digital Agency Network (DAN); that’s where your ideal customers are looking for the solution to their problems and challenges. Your agency’s presence in a niche-specific hub will help you get discovered and attract business opportunities. Every month, DAN attracts over 290k businesses looking to hire agencies. No wonder it’s become the main lead acquisition channel for digital marketing agencies from across the globe.
- Automate lead scoring to sift the high-quality leads from other traffic without analyzing their initial activity patterns. Tools such as Sendinblue and SALESmanago will help you skip the tedious identification phase and go straight to nurturing potential clients.
As a marketing agency, you need to learn to stand out from the fierce competition. There’s no other more powerful way to do so than through social proof.
Reviews and recommendations of your services will help you establish trust towards your agency and gain new clients. Naturally, personal recommendations from people you know work best, but 70% of people will trust recommendations from people they don’t even know.
That’s why it’s crucial to collect reviews online:
- Send time-triggered automated emails to your clients and ask them to leave a review of your services on your Facebook and/or Google My Business profile. You can use Hiver and Intercom for email automation.
- Distribute the reviews automatically across different channels. Your potential clients might be checking your agency’s credibility in different places. While Facebook and Google My Business are the most obvious ones, some may never reach your profiles on these marketing platforms. That’s why it’s essential not to neglect any lead acquisition source. Solutions such as Arrivala provide a simple process for your clients to post one review across all your review platforms.
Rank for relevant keywords
If you run a digital agency in Philadelphia, your most desired keyword is probably “digital agency Philadelphia.” The phrase is quite competitive, and you can do two things to achieve the top position in search results.
You can employ a content marketer with broad experience in SEO and produce tons of content supported by extended link-building activity to rank for your desired keywords. It’s a good way to do so, but you’ll need months to reach top positions on Google.
But there’s also a fast track to winning the Google ranks. You can list your agency in location-based directories that already rank in the top three for your desired keywords. One example is DAN.
Sticking to the example of the “digital agency Philadelphia” keyword, DAN has a strong position on the top of Google search results:
For a fixed amount that is way smaller than a content marketer’s salary, you can list your agency at the top of DAN’s digital agencies in Philadelphia ranking and redirect high-quality leads straight to your website. That’s a smart investment!
Speed up outreach
Outreach is one of the most successful methods of lead acquisition. According to a LinkedIn’s study, 62% of marketers claim that LinkedIn outreach activities successfully generate leads.
The number is impressive, yet outreach can consume hours of your team’s time. That’s why it’s good to automate at least part of it.
There are plenty of solutions that you can use to engage prospects at scale and send automated (and personalized!) messages and follow-ups. The most recommended ones include LinkedIn’s Sales Navigator, Zopto, and Expandi.
Even the most automated lead generation processes won’t save time and effort if you neglect client retention activities. I bet you don’t want to generate new leads on repeat just because you lose current clients but rather because you want to grow your agency gradually.
Here’s which parts of client retention you can automate:
- Automated social media reporting is a perfect solution for teams that spend hours preparing social media performance reports manually every week or month. You will save hours by scheduling automated reports with key metrics that get sent via email to your clients and other stakeholders.
- Collect customer feedback automatically and act on the identified needs, preferences, and obstacles. You can use online survey tools to streamline the process.
- Win back lapsed clients with automated win-back emails. Three to two months after a finished project, send an email to your past customers asking about their current challenges and summarizing the areas in which your agency can help.
For any digital agency, it’s crucial to focus on what really matters: generating leads for your clients. The more time and energy you can dedicate to their needs, the more successful your agency will be. You can automate most aspects of the lead generation and client retention processes to spare yourself some precious time.