Top Ten Reasons Your Ad Agency Should Blog

ad agency new business

Ultimately, a blog can be your most highly effective, powerful and low-cost new business marketing tool.  

I recently conducted a new business seminar for an ad agency. One of my recommendations was to use social media to help build new business opportunities for their agency with an agency blog as the platform.  They’ve committed the next 90 days making this a priority.

Why would I recommend a blog as one of the most important tools for ad agency new business?

Having an agency blog is well worth the time and effort. It provides many great benefits. Below are some of the important lessons I’ve learned through blogging and the ten reasons why your agency should have a blog:

  1. Communication that Connects. The most important lesson I’ve learned, “you don’t know what you know until you write it down.” I’ve been associated with great writers and I know that I’m not one of them! Blogging has helped me to be a better communicator.
  2. New Business Paradigm Shift. New business for ad agencies is undergoing a paradigm shift; instead of hunting for clients, it’s now more important for your prospective clients to find your agency. Blogs make it easier for your prospective clients to find your agency. They’ll even initiate contact when they are ready to engage.
  3. True ExpertiseClients want leadership not partnership from their agency. In the early days of television, programs were produced by ad agencies, leading the way utilizing a new technology. Today, when ad agencies should be leading, they are woefully behind in Web 2.0 marketing expertise.
  4. Prominence of a Blog. At one time it was said, “every business needs a Web site.” Today it’s, “every business needs a blog.” A blog will become the gateway to your agency, make your agency easier to find and provide a reason to visit online often. Your agency’s  Web site becomes more your agency’s online brochure. That’s good news for the majority of agencies that know how difficult it is to redesign and update their Web site!
  5. Learning is Doing.  It is difficult to learn to use the Web 2.0 tools, such as blogging, through a conference or seminar. You must experience it and discover the potential benefits it has for your agency and your clients.
  6. If its Good Enough for Your Client, It Better Be Good Enough for You. Blogging is an excellent tool for new business. Demonstrate how these tools have helped your agency by practicing what you preach. It makes for a powerful demonstration when you’ve actually used the tools you recommend to your clients. Also be sure to point out, in your next prospective client meeting, that your competitors aren’t using it.
  7. Personal Enrichment Tool. Blogging will enrich your professional life, keep you up to date with the freshest thinking and help you too be aquainted with the newest and best new trends. That will also be good for your clients, and position you in their minds as a trusted expert.
  8. Positioning Tool. Most ad agencies struggle with narrowing their target audience and thus have great difficulty in positioning and differentiating themselves. Blogging is an excellent tool to help ad agencies discover their positioning. A good example is the She-conomy blog, positioning a small ad agency as an expert marketing to women, who by the way, make 85% of all brand purchases.
  9. Focus on Client Benefits. Blogging keeps your agency focused on what is important to your prospective clients. It forces you talk to their benefit instead of talking about your agency.
  10. A Passion to Assist. Blogging isn’t for every agency. If your agency doesn’t have a passion to help your audience succeed you wont succeed with blogging. As soon as you start to “sell” your agency or brag about your credentials and awards, you will lose your credibility and your audience. Instead, provide rich content that helps your prospects with their marketing challenges and build trust. Then new business will come.

photo credit: lovestruck. via photopin cc

About Michael Gass

Consultant | Trainer | Author | Speaker

Since 2007, he has been pioneering the use of social media, inbound and content marketing strategies specifically for agency new business.

He is the founder of Fuel Lines Business Development, LLC, a firm which provides business development training and consulting services to advertising, digital, media and PR agencies.

Comments

  1. I would another really good one. These days, smart people are using analytics and tracking links. Thus, if an agency identifies a client, then simply talking about them on the blog will get the agency noticed. Chances are good that the marketing people are doing Alerts, Technorati searches on RSS, or one of the many, many ways one can monitor the online chatter.

    In other words, write something smart about the client, and chances are good the client will find it — if they’re smart.

    And as alerts and monitors get better, this reason could prop up to the top of your list.

  2. Good points Matt.

  3. Good info here. It is hard for me to think that agencies are so far behind on web 2.0. It shows that the focus is still on traditional media in a lot of cases.

    The problem i see with a lot of agency blogs is that they do not get updated enough. They also do not contain enough information about the philosophies of the agency. If i can’t learn from reading your blog, than what it is good for. Posting pictures from your halloween party can say a lot about how fun your company is, but it doesn’t say a lot about how good you are at what you do.

  4. Brandon,

    Thanks for taking the time to comment. The number of agencies that blog is still small and many who do are using it only as a platform to highlight events, awards and staff. This would be an excellent time for agencies to be leading instead of lagging behind.

  5. I can see that agencies put time and effort into establishing a blog but then don’t follow through. Not everyone handed the job of writing is comfortable with the kind of tone blogging thrives on. There’s a big difference between writing, say, regular press releases and blog copy that engages your audience, shows who your agency is (emphasis on show, don’t tell here :=) ) and builds a regular readership.

    Small agencies might be open to communicating in a less corporate fashion, but often don’t have the resources because they’re concentrating on getting work done.

    Personally, the clients I see often need a bit of help just getting comfortable with writing as a blogger as opposed to writing as a marketer, journalist or administrator.

  6. Jon,

    I fully agree with your comments. Writing for a blog is much different. Of those that I work with ad agency copywriters seem to have the most difficulty.

    What I love about social media and blogging, is that it teaches agencies to do new business the right way. The way we should have been doing it all along. Our focus is on the needs of the prospective clients and we lead with benefits rather than capabilities.

    Social media is time intensive but I don’t think there is a legitimate excuse for agencies of any size not to participate.

  7. When I’m looking for a good PR or ad agency match for a client, I always find myself reading the agencies’ musings. It provides insight into what their style is, let alone their awareness and use of the new media. I performed a recent match and while this very neat PR firm http://www.redskypr.com (in Idaho) didn’t win the pitch in LA, I find myself returning to the blog just to see what they’re saying.

    I used to bring clients to a German PR firm but when the founder nixed the new media a couple of years ago (“It’ll never catch on in Germany”), I dropped him from my active file. Sort of like Obama wearing mom jeans.

    So yes, when people visit your site they’re looking for what’s new and what’s hot.

    While I have this platform, one of my greatest disappointments is that US agencies don’t Skype the way their counterparts do in Europe and Asia.

    Finally, I shouldn’t be the one to comment on All Things Web sites. I’ve been in the business of matching for 10 years and am only going to launch my site in mid-August.

    Joan
    jow@internet-zahav.net

  8. #9 and #10 are the keys to success for sure – thanks for the reminders. Also, #8 does help sharpen your focus even if you are a bit slow at it like we’ve been.

    Anybody else tired of the term web 2.0 though?

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