The digital revolution has opened many lucrative doors into the entrepreneurial world in recent years. To go digital means to create a global company without physically expanding into foreign markets, to work with clients from all around the world without leaving your town, your office, or even your living room.
If you adopt the qualities necessary to make your startup a success in the right niche, say digital marketing, you can easily set yourself up for an affluent future.
That said, it’s important to note that the sheer popularity and demand for digital marketing services has created a highly-competitive industry, one that can ruin your chances of success if you don’t develop a solid battle plan.
Let’s break down the essential tips that will help you launch a successful digital marketing agency.
1. Leverage Your Skillset To Define Your Primary Scope Of Work
Digital marketing is a broad concept that encompasses many skills and marketing methods. Needless to say, it’s not likely that a single person is experienced in every single form of digital marketing, nor that a single person has the time or resources needed to run such comprehensive campaigns for every client.
In other words, you can be a one-person operation, but only if you stick to a single area of digital marketing, preferably the one you’re best at.
Besides, no matter how good you are in one area of digital marketing, chances are you’ll spend a lot of time improving your skills to deliver a better service to your clients.
This means that you should leverage your existing skills to minimize time wastage and capitalize quickly. After you have acquired a couple of clients and the money starts rolling in, you can start thinking about broadening your scope of work.
2. Decide Whether To Hire New People Or Outsource
At one point or another, you’re going to have more business than you can handle on your own. Such is the demand for good digital marketers.
This is your golden opportunity to enter the big leagues, but only if you manage to assemble a crack team of professionals to share the workload, and most importantly, broaden your agency’s scope of work so that you have more services to offer to bigger companies.
Remember, the bigger the client, the greater the chances that they need more than a single service.
From WordPress SEO specialists, to PPC gurus and social media managers, all the way to innovative content creators, there are many professionals out there that can help your small agency expand and grow in the competitive market.
Your job will be to decide which area to invest in first, and whether to bring in people full-time, or to outsource these services to freelancers. Both choices have their advantages and disadvantages, so take the time to research the best option for your specific needs.
3. Write A Financial Plan And Obtain The Necessary Financing
Money is the most important problem you will need to tackle very early on. It should come as no surprise that launching a brand-new company requires a substantial investment, even in the digital realm.
You will need to develop a comprehensive financial plan that includes everything from the grandest of expenses, down to the smallest of financial requirements needed to keep a digital agency afloat.
First and foremost, you will need to assess your current financial standing by checking your credit score in order to ascertain your true borrowing potential. Yes, you will need to borrow money to build, launch, and run your company without going under, so accept that fact early on.
One of the biggest mistakes aspiring entrepreneurs make is believing that they should put their livelihood forward and invest their own money to achieve these goals.
This is one of the worst things you can do. Your paycheck is there to cover your living expenses and your family’s lifestyle, so not only will you have to keep your steady job for a while, but you should also try to maximize your borrowing potential by improving your credit score.
Use the borrowed capital to fund your agency until you obtain long-term clients and gain brand recognition in your field. Strive to minimize operational expenses and be sure to reallocate a portion of the funds for those rainy days of the year.
4. Discover And Focus On Your Niche
Another crucial task you will need to tackle early on is to define your ideal niche and to focus on growing your business in that specific field. There are a number of reasons you’ll want to do this:
- Firstly, it lets you capitalize on a niche that’s close to your interests and skillset. If you know a lot about health and fitness, why chase clients in the auto-repair industry?
- It allows you to reduce time and financial wastage by directing resources to solve the client’s problems, and not researching their niche. Potential clients will know that you specialize in their field, which will also boost traffic to your website.
- It allows you to define your ideal clientele, which will make lead generation and onboarding much easier. You will be able to discern between lucrative prospects and the companies and individuals you should stay away from.
- Settling on a niche will allow you to build your skillset in that particular field, making you the star of the industry and the go-to agency for all companies and individuals in need of your services. After all, better to rule a part of the playground than to fight for the entire thing.
5. Focus On Your Long-Term Business
The key to rising quickly in the digital marketing industry nowadays lies in client retention. If you want to ensure a steady influx of cash, you’ll focus on building a carefully-curated list of clients that are trustworthy, satisfied with your services, and most importantly, ready and willing to pay.
You might need to take on one-off projects at first to build up your portfolio, but your long-term goal should be to establish ongoing relationships with a select clientele in order to solidify your financial position.
If you want to start a business, digital marketing is a lucrative niche that is attracting an ever-increasing number of aspiring entrepreneurs, and unsurprisingly so. The demand is high and the competition is fierce.
So even though you are venturing into an opportune environment, be sure to use these tips to avoid the common pitfalls and ensure a steady, even rapid, rise of your digital marketing agency. Then you can enjoy the freedom of being your own boss.
Editor’s Note: This article is part of the blog series Start Your Business brought to you by the marketing team at UniTel Voice, the virtual phone system priced and designed for startups and small business owners.