Why agencies can’t ignore their own content marketing

Agency owner ignoring content marketing

It’s the age-old problem: you’re too busy marketing clients to spend time marketing your agency. And who could blame you? A few blog posts and a handful of tweets isn’t going to bring in business. Why should you bother at all?

Well, first things first. You can’t throw content around like confetti when it suits you and expect to get results. But developing a thoughtful content marketing strategy will help you attract, retain and add value to clients now and in the future.

Here are a few reasons why your agency should invest in content:

Attract potential clients

You may gain the majority of your business from word of mouth, but don’t discount the impact that search and social has on building those leads. Creating content that’s valuable to your audience will put your agency top of mind when they or someone they know is looking for digital marketing, design or advertising expertise.

It’s telling that agencies who specialise in SEO and social media often have robust content marketing strategies in place. They understand that to keep the sales funnel flowing, they need to reach out to potential customers on a regular basis, even when things get busy.

Win more pitches

Pitches suck up an exorbitant amount of time and resources, so you want to make sure you’re giving it your best shot, every time. You may have created a spectacular presentation, but when it comes down to the wire, the client is always going to look at your website and other channels to see what else you’ve been up to. If all they find is tumbleweeds, you’re in trouble.

Consider what messages you’re regularly communicating in your pitches and make sure you create content that supports those claims. It’s all very well to say how clever, experienced, creative or innovative your team is, but you’ll need to prove it before anyone believes you. Write an opinion piece, share a case study, create an infographic. As long as you’re not obviously creating content to win a specific pitch, you’ll likely win points and round out your capabilities statement with some real-life examples.

Build loyalty and trust

Just as you need to give clients a reason to choose your agency, you need to give them a reason to stay. Your content marketing should speak to clients at every stage of the sales cycle, not just during the acquisition phase.

Create content that adds value to your existing clients and reminds them about the great work you do. Not only will they feel confident they made the right choice, but you’ll be their top pick for projects down the track. It’s also worth remembering that corporates are often a revolving door of staff, so you can’t rely on the relationship you have with one person to support your agency for years to come.

Demonstrate your expertise

Being a full-service agency is not a point of difference. It’s not even anything remotely special, these days. If you want potential clients to remember you, you’re going to have to tell a different story. Do you specialise in property, retail or healthcare? Sharing stories that demonstrate your area of expertise will show potential clients that you understand the challenges they face in their industry.

Even if you don’t specialise in a particular industry, content marketing will allow you to showcase your skills in the services you offer, from copywriting and design to social media and EDMs. It also gives you a chance to flaunt your brand personality and make sure your agency is talked about in the right circles. 

What do you think? Should agencies dedicate more time to focus on content marketing?

I'm an SEO copywriter and brand storyteller based in Sydney, who's besotted with words, good stories and hot chips. I'm currently studying a Master of Arts in Creative Writing at Macquarie University.

2 Comments

  • Reply March 5, 2015

    James Dillon

    Hi Sarah,

    Sage advice here! The old ‘shoemaker’s children go barefoot’ adage still holds true for most agencies. Even for many of those offering content marketing services.

    We definitely need to practice what we preach. Great to see the likes of Mahlab Media, Lush Digital and King Content doing just that.

    James

    • Reply March 5, 2015

      Sarah Morton

      Hi James,

      Thanks for reading! You’ve given some great examples of agencies who practice what they preach, Gorilla SEO certainly does a fantastic job of this too. I’m really looking forward to seeing what other agencies are doing with their content at CMI Sydney later this month.

      Cheers,
      Sarah

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