Archive for September, 2019

Want to Grow Your Digital Marketing Agency? Try These 5 Hacks

Monday, September 30th, 2019

5 Digital Marketing Agency Growth Hacks

Here’s the reality: most marketing agencies go nowhere. Even fewer achieve scale.

So should you be leveraging growth hacks for your digital agency?

The answer should be: Why wouldn’t you be trying to grow your digital agency?

The number one excuse that holds Donkey agencies back from the wonderful world of Unicorn Agency Land is that they “don’t want to be a big agency.” Some marketing agencies will claim that they are a boutique agency. This typically translates to: “My marketing agency is stuck, and I don’t know how to scale it.”

But why grow your digital agency at all?

Three Reasons to Grow your Digital Agency:

1. For money. You can make millions. You can speak at all the cool conferences. You can become an internet sensation.

2. For a challenge. Some people do things because, “why not?”

3. For a purpose. Create a valuable service that truly helps people. Participate in job creation that also helps people.

Agency Growth Hacks

And thus, we present our top 5 growth hacks for your digital agency.

Agency Growth Hack #1: Be a Little Bit Delusional!

Doesn’t the old saying go, “Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die today?”

Sure, the quote might be about living life to the fullest rather than scaling a digital agency, but it can be applied the same way. If you can dream as if you’ll live forever, why can’t you dream as if you’ll develop the greatest digital agency in the world?

In order to grow a digital agency to the top, you need to project a bold vision of that agency. Take a look at my business plan for my first company, before I started MobileMonkey, from 2008:

5 Digital Marketing Agency Growth Hacks

The scale depicted by this plan shows the company’s total revenue increasing over one hundred times the starting amount in just three years. Talk about a lofty goal!

But, it worked.

The reason that having bold, bordering delusional, aspirations for your agency is the first step in scaling it is because of what these bold ideas attract (or rather, who).

A lot of people want to simply go to work, do the bare minimum to achieve their base goals, and go home. An agency with goals that show projection of over 100 times the starting revenue won’t attract these types of people. It’ll attract people that share those visions.

Having lofty goals for scaling your agency will attract the employees, partners, and investors needed to make those goals a reality.

Agency Growth Hack #2: Deploy the Customer Churn Detectors and Churn Busters!

In order to successfully grow your digital agency, you need to have customers. But not just any customers – you need customers with a long customer lifetime – meaning they stay customers for a while!

The longer the customer lifetime, the more profitable the customer is. If you are churning customers after just a couple months, your agency business is not going to grow.

You want to retain customers for at least a year; better yet, keep them for over a year! The best you can do is to keep a customer for 18 or more months. This means they are likely to stick with you for the long haul, and will be the most profitable.

 

The average customer lifetime for marketing services is around 13 months.

How can you predict customer churn?

There are several ways that you can predict customer churn, and, using those predictions, you can take action to eliminate the possibility beforehand!

The biggest predictor of customer churn is the type of client option that your customers choose. Customers that choose the month-to-month client option tend to churn at a rate two times higher than the rest, because it’s the path of least commitment.

So what’s the churn buster in this situation? Eliminate the path of least commitment!

If you eliminate the month-to-month client option, you’ll sell less customers, but the customers you do sell will stay on for longer and be more profitable in the end, thus helping you grow your agency.

The second biggest predictor of churn is the customer’s pre-existing monthly advertising budget. This can also be viewed as the customer’s pre-existing commitment to the marketing channel.

Usually, the higher the monthly advertising budget, the more the customer has bought into whatever form of marketing your agency provides. This makes the customers more committed and thus, better customers. The most committed quartile of customers will churn at half the rate of the bottom quartile.

So what’s the answer here? How do you bust this churn?

Go up market! If you focus on finding bigger customers (much bigger customers), you’ll likely have fewer customers, but the customers you do have will have much bigger budgets and be far more committed to the marketing channel. These will be better customers overall and result in a higher profit for your agency.

The third biggest predictor for customer churn is mis-set customer expectations, or when you can’t live up to sales promises.

The way to defeat this problem is to look at the average customer value based on the sales representative who sold it. This way, you’ll be able to see if one particular sales rep is causing customers to churn; then you can take action accordingly.

Another way to deal with this problem is to disincentivize selling bad clients. For example, if you don’t pay your commission checks until 30-60 days into a client engagement, your sales representatives will be less likely to promise things that can’t be provided in order to gain more customers.

The fourth biggest predictor of customer churn is the 90-day Net Promoter Scores.

Net promoter scores (NPS) come from those surveys that often get sent out with questions like “How likely are you to recommend us to your friends or colleagues?” The answer is usually a number chosen by the customer from 0-10.

As you can see from this chart, a customer is only a promoter if they rank your agency with a 9 or 10. If they rank you with a 7 or 8, they are simply passive. And if they rank you from 0-6, they are actually detractors.

The NPS is calculated by subtracting the percent of detractors from the percent of promoters.

A good NPS is anywhere from 20-30%. If it is any less than that, you’re in trouble.

There are ways to manage and manipulate your score. If your agency has a lot of detractors and a bad NPS, do interventions! This can mean anything from a discount on a product to upgrading a client account to a more senior sales representative.

In addition, if someone says they are likely to refer your agency, ask them for that referral. Referrals can go very far in helping your agency grow. If you have a good customer give you a good referral, you will likely get more good customers.

Some churn-busting tips…

You can benchmark customer churn by using client service representatives.

Customer satisfaction and retention metrics should be reviewed monthly. You can incentivize great service by tying around 15% of a client service representative’s compensation to tangible performance numbers in terms of customer service rankings.

5 Digital Marketing Agency Growth Hacks

Believe it or not, a client’s happiness and satisfaction with their service representative is slightly more tied to client retention than account performance. To ensure a lot of happy customers, and thus a scaling agency, focus on training your client service representatives!

Another churn-busting tip is to hire more salespeople.

Obviously, the more people working to sell, the more customers are gained. This accelerates your agency’s rate of growth and decreases the customer churn rate. Both of these things result in accelerating the rate of revenue growth for your agency!

Here’s another churn busting tip: up-sell adjacent marketing services to established customers.

If you have established customers, it’s easier to up-sell them additional services than it is to find new business.

This also makes it harder for them to churn, because your agency is taking over so many parts of their business!

And a last churn-busting tip for you: use Facebook Messenger marketing tactics.

Messaging apps have surpassed social networks in terms of monthly active users.

So why not utilize this technology for your marketing?

In fact, Facebook Messenger marketing gets 10-80 times better engagement than email marketing or Facebook Newsfeed ads.

You can even use Messenger in your Facebook Newsfeed ads. Instead of clicking a link that takes them to a website, a potential customer will click a link that takes them to Facebook Messenger. This also captures their contact info. You can send these potential customers into Facebook Messenger chatbots that you host, and bring them to surveys, registrations or reminders, or segmentation and drip campaigns.

Chatbots are very influential in marketing. They also provide a differentiated value to your agency over others. Talk about scaling!

You can use Facebook Messenger marketing to put together an easy pricing proposal, charting a monthly retainer fee for your services. Here’s an example:

 

Now…let’s get back to growth hacks for your digital agency!

Agency Growth Hack #3: Growth Marketing!

Your agency’s purpose might be to do the marketing for your customers, but you can’t forget to market yourself!

Put time and energy into marketing your own agency to help it grow.

You can do this in a number of ways. Use popular marketing methods to catch attention. This can mean content marketing, or something completely different! Perhaps you can offer some of your services for free for a select number of people. This gets your product out there and shows potential customers what you’re made of!

It’s like sales events at car dealerships – draw attention to your agency!

Agency Growth Hack #4: Recruiting to Grow your Agency!

A good agency becomes a good agency when it has good people working for it and supporting it. A major growth hack for digital agencies is to focus on how and who you are recruiting.

It is a good idea to determine how you will spend your agency’s money. A good financial ratio splits the money three ways. One third will go to general administrative costs and cost of customer acquisition, including marketing and sales. Another third will go towards the costs of goods sold, meaning the cost of the software, and the hiring of employees. And the final third will be the net profit; money that you can drop to the bottom line to cover taxes, etc.

Here’s three agency scaling hacks that will help you recruit the best candidates for your agency:

Have an internal training department for client service representatives. This will allow you to hire your service reps at a lower cost and train them to do the work.

Have employee non-compete agreements in employment documents and client contracts. This way, you can take action against employees that move to work for competitor agencies.

Have an amazing work culture. Having a beautiful office is a perk in its own right. But making sure people don’t want to leave your agency will mean your employees aren’t only there to do a job; they actually like where they work. This will lead to better performance. In addition, employees who genuinely love where they work will refer more good people to work for you.

And finally, the last marketing agency growth hack…

Agency Growth Hack #5: Cold Emailing!

Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean spamming your customers and potential customers with email after email. It’s more about supplementing traditional inbound marketing with outbound prospecting.

It’s important to note that you should do your outbound prospecting from a different email domain.

So how do you go about cold emailing as a marketing agency growth hack?

First, get a list of emails. You can do this by manually searching for emails using tools like Hunter, if you happen to know the name of a person or company that you want to email. You can also buy lists from tools like ZoomInfo or LinkedIn Sales Navigator. Or, you can use a Scraper like the Phantom Buster Facebook Group Extractor to collect information.

And then…bombs away!

5 Digital Marketing Agency Growth Hacks

Here’s a couple tips about cold emailing:

Use an email list verfier service. This will ensure that you have minimal deliverability issues and the majority of your emails actually get sent.

Warm up your email address. Do this by sending emails to friends and family. Tell them to engage with the emails!

Fly under the radar. Instead of going crazy and sending hundreds of emails a week, go slowly. Send around 10 or so emails a day. This makes engagement rates higher because people are less likely to feel spammed. There is software that will do this for you automatically.

Make emails more engaging. Low intent means low engagement rates (around 3 to 5 times lower, in fact!).

Use intent signals. Obviously you have to find ways to make your emails more engaging, and one easy way is by using intent signals. These include changes in management, a company moving, and similar things. This means you’ll send out fewer, but more targeted, emails that are more likely to be clicked on.

And

There’s 5 great growth hacks for digital agencies. Let’s recap this journey from Donkey Agency Land to Unicorn Agency Land:

1. PROJECT a bold vision for scaling your company.

2. DEPLOY the churn detectors and churn busters.

3. HACK your growth. Use the latest marketing strategies and outbound marketing.

4. EXPAND. Offer adjacent marketing services and charge more.

5. HIRE great employees. Train people yourself.

And finally…

6. ACCELERATE. Grow your agency as fast as possible to maximize exit valuation.

With those steps, you’ll be in Unicorn Agency Land. Your agency will be scaling faster than you can even keep track of, and you’ll achieve whatever it was that led you to leverage digital agency growth hacks in the first place.

Republished by permission. Original here.

Image: Depositphotos.com

This article, “Want to Grow Your Digital Marketing Agency? Try These 5 Hacks” was first published on Small Business Trends

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RWE aims to be carbon neutral by 2040

Monday, September 30th, 2019

German utility to close all of its conventional power stations in the next 2 decades

Fitch cuts Saudi Arabia rating after oil infrastructure attacks

Monday, September 30th, 2019

Kingdom remains in upper medium investment grade but has economic forecast lowered

The Head of the "Tokyo Palace" Museum Was Fired After Calling to ‘Shoot Down’ Greta Thunberg

Monday, September 30th, 2019

The head of the Amis du Palais de Tokyo (Friends of Tokyo Palace) Bernard Chenebault has been fired for calling for the assassination of Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, TASS reported.

According to Saturday’s newspaper, Chenebault made a comment on Facebook regarding the emotional speech of 16-year-old Greta Thunberg at the UN General Assembly session:

“I’m not deaf and I’m not an idiot, and I hear all these calls (for environmental protection) ) that have been going for the last 10 years.” 

In comments on Facebook describing the teen as a “madwoman” Chenebault suggests that, in his estimation, Thunberg’s “conduct” “adds another layer of hatred in our society already agitated by bad feelings on all accounts.”

“We must shoot her down,” he declared, adding that he hoped that “someone unhinged shoots her down.”, Sputnik News reported.

Chenebault’s statement immediately caused a storm of outrage on the social network. Chenebault was reminded that he called for murder twice in the same publication. To this comment, he only replied, “Oh yes.”

The management of the Paris Museum of Contemporary Art issued the following statement on its Twitter page on Sunday: 

“We disapprove of these words and dissociate ourselves from this position, formulated in a personal capacity and which does not engage the Palais de Tokyo or the Friends of the Palais de Tokyo,” the museum stated in a news release. “The general assembly of the Friends of the Palais de Tokyo will meet as soon as possible to proceed with the election of a new person to the presidency.”, Sputnik News reported.

Chenebault himself posted a statement on Facebook, expressing regret for “gross and inadmissible statements against Greta Thunberg”. The former president of the association asserts that he did not call for the assassination of the activist, and his earlier statements on Facebook simply went out of his control and did not in any way reflect his intentions. Bernard Chenebault also apologized to the museum and the association for the trouble he has caused.

 

 

 

 

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World Mental Health Day: How to Take Care of Your Mental Health

Monday, September 30th, 2019

October 10th will mark World Mental Health Day, a fairly recent commemoration which has gained a lot of traction in the past few years, as mental health concerns are finally getting the level of attention they deserve. The World Health Organization estimates that one-in-four people worldwide suffer from some form of mental illness, with diagnoses rising at an ever-increasing rate.

Mental illness has the same potential for harm as any physical illness, which is why treatment should be approached with the appropriate level of seriousness and maturity. Here are some ways that you can take care of your mental health this year.


Source: Unsplash

Open up 

The first step towards effective mental health care is being able to talk about your situation with others. This doesn’t mean you need to pluck up the courage to shout it from the rooftops (although that’s also fine). Rather, simply taking the step to tell someone you trust will open the door towards effective treatment and recovery. This can be a friend, family member or loved one, or even a mental health professional or volunteer. It’s about being honest with yourself and knowing that support is available. 

Seek therapy

Fortunately, the stigma that was once attached to seeking professional help has mostly faded away. Speaking to a qualified professional will allow you to better understand your condition and plot a roadmap to recovery. Of course, with long waiting times for publicly provided therapy and prohibitive costs for many private options, some people may feel this option is out of reach.

However, there are alternatives which are catered to people with all kinds of conditions. Those who may feel too anxious to leave the house may prefer courses that they can do online, allowing you to receive therapy from the comfort of your own home. Patients can receive counseling via email, chat, or video call, allowing you to seek the kind of treatment that fits you best. 

Source: Unsplash

Look after your body 

The link between mental and physical health is well-proven. Although those with mental health conditions may struggle to say, diet and exercise, even small improvements in your physical routine can have a substantive impact on your mental health. Try staying hydrated throughout the day, eat foods that are rich in vitamins (particularly vitamins D and C), and spending as much time facing the daylight as possible, even if that just means moving your desk to a window. The smallest adjustments can make significant differences, so don’t be afraid to try.

Establish a support network

Source: Unsplash

Having a support network that you can rely on during tough spells is critical. This is not just about placing the right people and contacts around you, it’s also about removing any toxic influences in your life. If you feel that you have friends or a social circle that don’t support you or perhaps encourages activities that are detrimental to your mental health and wellbeing, it’s time to consider removing them from your life. You may find that having a strong support network is crucial to your recovery, to don’t hesitate to be discerning when it comes to who you interact with.

There are many different avenues to take when tackling mental health difficulties. There is no one-size-fits-all approach and what works for one person may not be as effective for another. Take your time and try things out, measuring the impact as you go. Recovery is always a multi-step process.

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Zoran Zaev: We Accept the Recommendations of Bulgaria

Monday, September 30th, 2019

It is possible to find a solution to the controversial issues with Bulgaria very quickly. Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev has said this, BGNESS reported.

“We have signed a treaty with which we accepted we have a common history. Of course, part of it is different for the two countries. In that spirit, I believe the committees will find a solution,” Zaev said.

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Boris Johnson Accused of Sexual Assault

Monday, September 30th, 2019

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been accused of sexual assault, BNR reported.

Journalist Charlotte Edwards wrote in the Sunday Times that in 1999 Johnson had run his fingers over her under the table during a private lunch at the Spectator magazine office. At the time, Johnson was the editor of the magazine. After lunch, Edwards shared her experience with a woman who was on the other side of Johnson. She also stated that the then editor of the magazine had run his fingers over her. Downing Street denied the journalist’s claims.

She shared the story In her first column for The Sunday Timesshe shared the following:

“I’m seated on Johnson’s right; on his left is a young woman I know.

“More wine is poured; more wine is drunk. Under the table I feel Johnson’s hand on my thigh. He gives it a squeeze.

“His hand is high up my leg and he has enough inner flesh beneath his fingers to make me sit suddenly upright.”, The Guardian reported.

Johnson had earlier dismissed another accusation that he was in a conflict of interest over contacts with a former American model who turned to a business that received a total of 126,000 pounds of state funding when Johnson was mayor of London.

Thanks to her friendship with Johnson, Jennifer Arcuri has been able to attend trade delegations and benefit from sponsorship contracts to which she and the companies would not otherwise have been able to access.

In the UK, meanwhile, it has been widely rumoured that the opposition is considering a no-confidence vote against the prime minister. Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn says he is ready to head a temporary government if Boris Johnson is removed from Downing Street.

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Passengers Are Evacuated from Sofia Airport

Monday, September 30th, 2019

Departure passengers are evacuated from Terminal 1 at Sofia Airport, bTV reported.

According to initial information, the evacuation is due to a fire. The alarm went off at about 12.30.

There is no information whether there are victims and about what triggered the alarm.

 

Expect details!

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North American oil and gas small-caps look to London

Monday, September 30th, 2019

Listings highlight the struggle energy groups face after US investors cool on sector

After Austrian Conservative Sebastian Kurz Wins Election, What’s Next?

Monday, September 30th, 2019

Former Chancellor Sebastian Kurz wins a strong vote but cannot make the cabinet himself.

The big winner in the Austrian elections is the party of former Chancellor Sebastian Kurz. The formation is taking 7% more than the previous vote and will have 11 deputies more than it has before.

The big loser is Kurz’s coalition partner in the previous cabinet. The far-right party of the Austrian Freedom Party is losing as many as 19 parliamentary seats after being at the center of a scandal that overthrows the government.

Although it has won much ahead of the latter, Kurz’s party will not be able to form a government on its own. The Greens are the main candidate for a coalition partner, who put 23 MPs in parliament. However, they say that in order to participate, the People’s Party must abandon the far-right policies that it followed with its previous partners.

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