In this day and age where technology is transforming businesses, there is one segment of marketing that is thriving: Digital marketing.
Digital marketing has changed the game when it comes to marketing businesses. In the 25 years since it was introduced, companies are spending more and more of their budgets on digital advertising. With the rise of social media and other new-age media, businesses, especially the 36-percent of women-led businesses, have more platforms than ever to get their business out there.
If you’re looking to get into the digital marketing business, here are some great tips to ensure that your agency will be a success.
Develop the Skills Needed for Success
Before embarking on the road to a successful future, you must first know of the skills needed to be one of the best in the business.
Creativity and intelligence go a long way, but so does having the right skill set and experience. The latter two are tremendous assets because, in the digital marketing universe, if you don’t have the skills to deal with accounts and client relationships, then you will be pushed out of business faster than it takes for the sun to rise. Granted, it will take time for you to develop those killer skills that will make you a digital marketing wizard, but as long as you’re open to learning new things and skills, you will take off in this industry.
That is why, according to experts, you should keep your day job while starting your own digital marketing company until it can take off and make money. Being great takes time, but if you learn the skills, you will be a dynamo in the digital marketing arena.
Settle Into a Decent Office Building
So, you’ve weighed the pros and cons and have decided that getting into the digital marketing arena is what you want to do, which is great!
After you’ve made your decision, it’s time to get a physical location for your brand new agency. The good news for you is that this may be the best time to go shopping for your new office as commercial rents are affordable and space is plentiful (depending on the market you’re in). You may think that you need to be located in a shining office complex to compete, but that isn’t the case.
You can move into an older office complex that is decent and serve your needs in the interim. Going this route will save you money, which is important because in every new business, staying true to your budget is essential for the success of your company. Now that you’ve seen an office building that serves your agency’s needs, you have to outfit it with furniture, and not just any type of furniture, but commercial furniture.
Get furniture that will be comfortable for your employees and clients alike, and the best part is that it doesn’t have to cost you an arm-and-a-leg. In medium and large markets, there are plenty of office furniture stores that are willing to make deals with you, so explore that option.
Get Your Technology Up-To-Date
Now that you have your office and are outfitted with comfortable furniture, now it’s time to turn your attention to the meat-and-potatoes of your digital marketing business: Technology.
We mean, you can’t have a digital marketing business without the technology to make it happen. It is the leg that will keep your agency afloat. When you’re searching for an office home, you should inquire and assure that the technology is already there to make your business a success, particularly internet services. The office building that you have your eye on should already be equipped with internet service so that you can get your company off and running. Having high-speed internet access will get your digital marketing services off the ground and on the way to attracting the clients that will make you a success in this field.
In the case that you don’t have the internet infrastructure to make it happen right away, call your local internet provider to come in and re-wire the building so that you can have fast internet access to start making digital marketing magic.
Have a Proper Server Room
In addition to making sure that your internet capabilities can handle the workload, you also should have a proper server room.
Yes, you need an entire room dedicated to servers as they can, and do take up an entire room. Just having a room dedicated to your servers is half the battle, however. You also need to make sure that it is retrofitted so that it can run as smoothly as possible. The first step is making sure that the room is cool, which is essential so that your servers won’t overheat on you.
That means you have to ensure that your building’s air conditioners are working the way it should run. If not, then you should get a hold of a contraction that specializes in air conditioning installation to ensure that the units are installed and working the way they should run. If your servers overheat, they will shut down, and that can take out your internet services; and as established earlier, having internet services is an essential function for running a digital marketing business.
After you’re done making sure the server room temperature is up-to-snuff, you should turn your attention to the servers themselves. Make sure that you have remote access to servers so that you can assure that nothing is going wrong with the servers. Having reliable and working servers, just like all reliable internet, will allow you to make sure your web hosting service is working the way it should work.
Make Sure Your Building Is Accessible
Now that you’ve picked out the right building and have your internet and servers up-and-running, there is one thing that you shouldn’t overlook: Accessibility.
While the COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing, it may be impossible at the moment to host in-person meetings. However, once the pandemic passes, seeing your clients in person will be essential to keeping your digital marketing business humming and on the path to success. That is why, while the timing is good, you should focus on improving your building’s accessibility so that your clients can easily reach your offices.
Focus on door entry systems so that your clients can have an easy time reaching your offices. Making sure the door entry system is working also adds a level of security to your offices. If you have an office that has multiple stories, there is a great chance that you will have an elevator that will whisk clients to your offices. Make sure that your building’s elevators are working safely by contacting an elevator safety company to come in and look over your building’s system to see if it’s up to code and safe for clients.
Before Becoming The Master, Become a Contractor
Now that you have all of the above settled, it’s time to finally get your digital marketing business off the ground.
Before that, however, you have to crawl before you can walk, and in this industry, that means becoming a contractor before you become a founder. It may not sound appealing acting as a contractor, but this is a great way to getting your foot in the door and tooling your business to be what you want it to be. Starting as a contractor will allow you to get out there in the digital marketing marketplace without taking on the number of risks that come with finding and operating a true business.
As a digital marketing contractor, you can work on your client building skills and work on your portfolio, which will pay off tremendously once you strike out on your own. In the marketing business, building trust and relationships are the most important aspect of the job. You can’t get clients if they don’t trust you or your business model, which will lead to you being out of a job.
Being a digital marketing contractor will allow you to strengthen and learn the valuable skills needed to meet with clients and close deals, two things that will be essential once you begin your digital marketing venture.
Have the Pitch Perfect Business Model
After working on and building your marketing skills as a contractor and building up your clientele, now may be the time to finally open-up your digital marketing firm.
Once you’ve reached this level, you have to develop the pitch-perfect business plan that will take your company on a road to success. Having the right business model is an essential part of starting any business, whether it’s a digital marketing firm or a corner store, as, without a plan, it will be hard for your company to succeed.
That is especially true for the digital marketing business. When you’re drawing up your business model, you should figure out how to price your work so that your company will be competitive and profitable. There are three common ways to do this: Percentage of spend, hourly rates, and flat rates.
The percentage of spend pricing method is the one many digital marketing firms go with as it will factor into the growth potential and scalability of clients. You can also charge clients by the hour for your services, which may make sense in the short term, but will become complex over time. Then, there’s the flat rate, which is fairly simple as you charge a flat fee for your services, and you can charge this rate monthly for the length of your contract with your client. However, this works against you if your client’s business grows, as they will be making bigger profits while your firm will be stalled in profit growth, which is why the percentage of spending pricing method is so popular with marketing firms, especially up-and-coming ones.
At the end of the day, however, it’s up to you to decide what’s the best price point for your business to make a profit and grow. Make sure that you study this with care, as you don’t want to operate a digital marketing firm that is constantly in the red. Forge a pricing method that will be good for both parties and suit both needs.
Have a Strong Marketing Team
A company is only as good as the team it has in its corner.
That is true for digital marketing firms as the marketing team will be your backbone to ensuring your company prospers. Having a strong marketing team will only add to the prestige of your business. You can hire in-house, or you can keep your costs down by outsourcing to a marketing company that will work for your best interest. Once you assemble (or contract) the best marketing contract money can buy, you will be on the ultimate path to carving your footprint in the digital marketing marketplace.
To sum things up, getting into the digital marketing business can be a risk that carries a high amount of rewards. Like jumping into any business venture, you must plan and think out how you want to run your business.
As mentioned earlier, it’s easier than ever to jump into the digital marketing arena. There are so many platforms where businesses can market their product, and your expertise in marketing and the digital marketplace can work wonders. However, as with any business, you must gain the skills and experience needed to be successful.
For this reason, it may be best to start as a digital marketing contractor before going into business for yourself. Being a contractor will allow you to build relationships with clients, which you can take as soon as you open your firm. Once you’ve reached this part, find the right office building that will have the technology available for the workload needed for your office to run successfully.
Make sure your office is accessible so that you can meet face-to-face with clients as soon as it’s safe to do so, and have a strong marketing team behind you that will have your same determination and drive to be the top company in the digital marketing field.
It’s an exciting time to jump into digital marketing. Make sure that you jump into it with the foresight of being a success.