Lead generation techniques that include direct mail and cold calls are becoming less effective as new communication channels and technology have greatly altered prospective client behavior.
Prospects are using the Internet and related media to learn about agencies that best meet their needs. Your primary focus now should be on pulling them, through relevant, resourceful content, toward your agency’s services. Why?
Prospective Clients Control Engagement
- 80 to 90% of business transactions now begin from online search.
- A recent CMO Council survey revealed that 80% of those surveyed said that they found their vendors, not the other way around.
- Less than 10% of recent buyers were contacted cold by the solution provider.
A study from Connected Marketer and DemandGen Inside the Mind of the New BtoB Buyer reveals shifts in the behavior of BtoB Buyers:
- 78% started with informal info gathering
- 59% engaged with peers who addressed the challenge
- 48% followed industry conversations on topic
- 44% conducted anonymous research of a select group of vendors
- 41% followed discussions to learn more about topic
- 37% posted questions on social networking sites looking for suggestions/feedback
- More than 20% connected directly with potential solution providers via social networking channels
The Need to Connect Through Content
Almost 95% of recent purchasers said the solution provider they chose “provided them with ample content to help navigate through each stage of the buying process.” Publishing the right content and making sure it gets found in the right places is a vital component for your new business strategy.
Agencies should use inbound marketing tools such as:
- Agency blogs
- Search engine opitmization
- Social media networks such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn
- Social bookmarking sites
- Your agency’s website (online brochure)
- Forums and peer groups
- Comments on other blogs and online articles
- Article marketing
- White papers
- Slideshare: uploaded PowerPoint and Keynote presentations
- Podcasts and Webinars
Engagement is Expected
93% of the Internet users active in social media say they expect a company to have a social media presence and to be able to actively engage with that company.
The Forrester Research report Social Media Playtime is Over clearly shows that dabbling or experimenting is not enough. You have to deliver genuinely interesting and valuable content that meets the needs of your audience and actively engages them.
Our recent study of the top 100 companies in the small, medium and large categories revealed that only a very small percentage are actively engaging their audience. The playing field is wide open and this is a strategy that can reap big rewards. Social Media Strategy, Expansion Internet Marketing + PR
A Window of Opportunity
Prospective clients are actively using social media in the agency selection process. Agencies need to implement a social media strategy along with their other new business tactics. Time is of the essence. Because of the fact that few agencies understand this, even less are doing it. Small to midsize agencies in particular, have a window of opportunity to gain market share.
Your niche + social can put your agency at the head of the line for new business.
Additional articles that may be of interest:
- Ad Agencies in “The Great Race” for New Business
- Report Paints a Painful View of Ad Agencies
- Clear and Present Danger of Social Media for Ad Agencies
- Survey: 2010 Digital Marketing Outlook
- Ad Agencies: Don’t Turn Your Back on Digital
- Digital Agency Uses Social Media for New Business
- Is Your Ad Agency Prepared for the Magnitude of Digital Growth?
- Survey: Most Audiences to Get Information from Mobile Devices
- New Advertising Study: Digital Savvy Consumer Emerging Quicker Than Expected
- Survey: A Client’s Perspective on Ad Agencies
- Study: Change, Challenges and Call to Action to Ad Agencies