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Strong partnerships between an agency and a brand are established on trust, honesty, and open communication. It’s important to appreciate each other’s expertise and work together to achieve goals by sharing knowledge, actively listening and educating each other. A truly collaborative partnership always yields the best results, according to manchester’s digital marketeers at a discussion-led event hosted by e3creative on 6 December.
e3creative Strategy Director Lizzie Saied led a talk on prioritising results over client feedback that brought up challenges the entire room could relate to. Digital strategists working as specialists in content writing, PPC, SEO, PR, CRO or similar professions are often placed in a difficult position when their client endeavours to drive plans. Lizzie facilitated an insightful conversation pulling from her extensive and relative experience in the industry. To recap the evening with highlights, these were the three most active discussion points:
Setting the strategy around KPIs. Objectives are most often centred around numbers and, therefore, all tactics within the plan should feed into the end result. For non-marketing minds, it can be easy to lose sight of the overarching goal and deviate from it as the plan goes on. In this incidence, the onus is on the strategic partner to keep the strategy on track and not jeopardise results through being agreeable. Amongst those in attendance, common challenges discussed were balancing brand visibility goals compared to campaign pushes and educating clients on the value of quality leads in contrast to an increase in traffic with no enquiries. A solution raised was outlining monthly benchmarks and constantly revisiting what success looks like for their business, since marketing should support the business plan.
Preventing a blinkered view of their market. Explaining a client’s realistic position in the marketplace was mentioned as a potentially difficult conversation to have since many businesses are under the impression they’re providing a completely unique product or service without facing any competitors. As Lizzie stated to the group, conducting a market analysis at the beginning of a partnership and presenting data and insight to factually back up statements and fuel points in strategic plans, enables the agency partnership to commence on a positive note by defining manageable expectations and proactively moving forward.
Maintaining clear lines of communication and honing your relationship. Avoid sending and receiving disjointed messages, since this is known to prompt assumptions and cause requirements to get lost. An agency’s direct point of contact is often an internal project manager that may not be as knowledgeable in marketing channels and they work in conjunction together. The participants shared stories based on their experience and agreed; it is best to educate your point of contact on the reasoning behind actions and on recurring subjects such as why keywords matter and how they relate to onsite content. This approach enables the agency to strengthen their relationship with the client to build trust and have them champion your direction to decision makers. It can also be helpful to go the extra mile by preparing a presentation for them to reiterate internally.
The purpose of this event was to gather Manchester’s digital marketing community for an open discussion on how to work collaboratively with clients in order to deliver optimum results. It was a rewarding evening featuring in-depth conversation sparking debate amongst those in attendance and challenging people to review situations with a new perspective. Join Manchester Digital Marketing Meetup for updates on similar upcoming events at e3creative.