Your website looks amazing. You’ve created the most eye-catching logo. Your digital agency is up and running and nothing can stop you — except for one thing. You’re struggling to get clients.
The truth is, clients rarely come flocking to your business once you become an official agency, or any small business for that matter. Practically every digital marketing agency starts from scratch, without any clients. But don’t let this discourage you — there are numerous actions you can take to start attracting new clients.
It’s time to start marketing yourself in similar ways as you would promote your own clients. Here’s the best part: the same tactics you would use to build your client’s brands and online presence are the same ones you can take advantage of too.
Knowing how to get marketing clients doesn’t have to be a mystery, but it’s understandable how this might be a frustrating prospect. It sure is a lot easier to market your client’s services than your own!
Let’s take a look at how to find clients you can’t wait to work with and get your agency built from the ground up.
1. Define your niche
Defining your niche should ideally be a part of the business plan you’ve already created. But perhaps you’ve decided to switch gears with your digital marketing agency since creating your initial plan. Or maybe you’re starting to learn new aspects of marketing you’d like to incorporate into your services.
Whatever the case, your niche is your ticket to building your company’s brand.
Digital marketing casts a wide net and includes many different topics. Defining a niche is an important step to focus your services and your own marketing. For instance, you may focus solely on Search Engine Optimization (SEO), pay per click (PPC), or web design and development services.
Once you know your niche for your services, then you can drill down further by targeting specific customers or industries. Perhaps it’s real estate agents, or the pharmaceutical industry, or maybe you want to work with startups only.
Why is this important for attracting new clients? Once you hone in on your core marketing services and core ideal clients, then you are able to focus your own marketing efforts.
Think about this from the same perspective you approach working with a client.
Unless your client gives you an insane amount of money to blast their brand everywhere on the internet, you’re likely to take a more targeted approach as you’re working with them for their digital marketing needs. You’re likely to focus on two or three key areas.
The same is true for your own brand. Once your niche and clients are identified, then you zero in on the best marketing strategy for your agency.
2. Join the right forums
Once you know who your target client is and the industries you’re most interested in pursuing, then it’s time to start hanging out where your clients are.
Joining forums is one of the many ways to connect with businesses who need your digital marketing services.
Once you join a forum, you have the ability to ask questions, answer questions, offer opinions, and maybe even advertise what you offer. However, being in a forum or group isn’t only to help you find potential clients. If you read through the comments you’ll quickly identify common pain points among your target client.
LinkedIn is a fantastic resource to start with, and you have thousands of groups to choose from. But LinkedIn is more than connecting with your old work buddies from three jobs ago. It’s a wealth of information for industry professionals and trends, and any other newsworthy topics.
Facebook is another place for business forums. Again, start searching for groups based on your target client and see if any groups pop up. Once in a group, you can comment, answer questions, and there may even be opportunities for posting your services.
Reddit is another resource, although it’s more of a “question and answer” online site. But Reddit allows you to search for questions that pertain to your potential clients.
While you may not be able to advertise your services too much through forums (some groups do not allow this activity), the knowledge you gain and industry insights could provide real value to your overall business.
3. Start a blog on your website
If you’re not already taking advantage of having a blog on your website, then now is a great time to incorporate this form of copywriting into your own marketing gameplan.
How does posting a blog on a regular basis help you?
Blog posts ideally follow SEO best practices so you show up in the Google search results. But beyond rankings, it’s also a medium for you to share your expertise, advice, and engage with an audience. By posting regularly, you’re establishing your authority within your digital marketing niche.
Your marketing plan for your blog should be as detailed as the ones you create for potential clients. Once your blog is up and running, it’s time to build your audience. Sites such as LinkedIn are prime places to publish your post and start conversations and show your potential clients how knowledgeable you are in marketing.
Participate in guest blogs
Another aspect of blogging to take advantage of is participating in guest blogs. A guest blog is where you write and post your own blog on someone else’s blog and website. This helps both you and the host of the site because you both reach new audience members you haven’t been introduced to before.
Typically, in return for a guest post, the site owner will provide a link to your professional blog or biography. This exposes your digital marketing agency to an entirely new set of people.
But guest blogging involves a bit of strategy. For instance, while you may have a favorite fashion blog you follow, guest posting on a fashion site may not be where your potential clients are.
Instead, think about the following as you’re identifying potential websites to partner with:
- Is the content focused on your niche?
- Is the audience of the blog interested in your industry or niche?
- Does the blog have an engaged audience – will they share or comment?
- Will the blog owner share your posts on their own social channels?
You can find blogs to guest post on simply with a Google keyword search such as “submit a guest post” or “guest post.”
Creating your own blogs or guest blogging is a fun, creative way to engage with potential clients and grow a loyal following.
4. Facebook retargeting ads
As a digital marketer, you’re likely familiar with Facebook advertising, or at least the basic principles. Why not put your skills to work and use them to find your own digital marketing clients? Facebook retargeting ads are ideal for finding new clients that are more likely to need your services as a digital marketer.
Facebook retargeting ads are ads you create specifically targeting people who have interacted with your previous Facebook ads or your website.
To get started, you have to have installed Facebook Pixel. Once installed, you have access to data and insights on who is taking action with your website or your ads. For instance, Facebook Pixel will tell you if someone downloaded an item, clicked for more information, or spent a specific amount of time on a particular page.
This works great for digital marketing clients too. Once you have the insights on those who’ve come to your website, then you create a new Facebook ad campaign targeted to this audience.
By using retargeting ads, you’re more likely to get potential clients who are interested in your digital marketing services since they’ve shown interest before.
Want to learn how to run Facebook ads for clients? Check out our course.
5. Up your social game
Social media is a natural part of the digital marketing industry. Whether you’re working with clients to connect them with the right influencers or managing a client’s social media channels, you’re already familiar with how important the socials are to a business.
The same is true for advertising with your own business. Social media should be a regular part of your marketing strategy and used to pull in potential clients.
This is where your niche and understanding your potential customers comes into play again. Try focusing on channels where your clients are more likely to be.
For example, using real estate agents as an example, you might be more likely to find them on Facebook and less on Twitter.
Once you know where your customers are, you can create regular posts and ways to further engage with your audience. Not only does this help keep your name in the forefront of a potential client’s mind, but it also shows them what you can do with the power of social media.
Build an email distribution list
Another bonus to being active on social media is the ability to build up your email distribution list. You can run various campaigns and incentives to get potential clients to share their email address with you. If someone is willing to share their email address with you then you have one more avenue to influence your potential client.
And don’t forget, you can also build your database for potential clients by getting email addresses from Facebook retargeting ads or subscribers to your blog.
An email distribution list is a highly valuable tool you can use to keep clients updated with changes in the industry, your business, trends—basically any information you think they would benefit from.
6. Add social proof
As you gain clients, consider adding “proof” to your own website and email signature. This is referred to as social proof, and it’s used by digital marketers all the time.
Look at this example from a digital marketing site that has a multitude of clients and is found on the home page:
Adding social proof not only validates your growing list of clients, but it adds credibility to your agency. Potential clients see this and immediately know you are in demand.
Social proof also further emphasizes your niche. As you can see from the example above, there are many clients within the auto industry or related to it somehow. While not all businesses are within the same industry, it’s easy to see this agency works with quite a few in the auto business.
Knowing how to get clients for digital marketing is essential to building your business, but it doesn’t have to be an elusive goal either. If there’s one truth among digital marketing, it’s that it is constantly evolving. As a business owner, you are constantly at the forefront of the latest marketing trends.
The same is true for your own efforts to gain clients. You may have to try several of these strategies, or more, and push yourself out of your comfort zone. It may be uncomfortable at first, but before long, you’ll see the results of all of your efforts with amazing new clients.