Networking plays a crucial role in growing a digital agency’s reach. You develop and maintain relationships with various contacts in your industry through networking.
Networking has many benefits, including business opportunities, signing new clients, industry insights, up-skilling opportunities, brand visibility, and more!
In today’s post, we’ll be looking at effective networking strategies in detail and how they can empower your agency, taking it from strength to strength. We’ll be going over the following points:
As an agency owner, one of the best foundations you can build is a strong network and you can start by identifying your target audience and the industry’s influencers.
To connect with the right people you’ll need to know who the right people are. So to strip it back you’ll need to:
Connecting with influencers can significantly boost the reach of your agency, so it’s worth taking the time to scope out and strategise who you can start building relationships with. We’d suggest:
Attend relevant industry conferences and events and look out for speakers, panellists and visitors who are influential in your field. This is the perfect opportunity to get yourself and your agency in front of these influential figures and start building a connection.
Joining relevant professional associations and communities can do the growth of your digital marketing agency a world of wonders. Not only can you get exposure but associating yourself with professional organisations can add credibility to your agency. You’ll gain growth and recognition, mentorship opportunities and you’ll stay up to date with industry news and standards.
There are lots of options in the way of online platforms that you can use to build a strong network for your agency and LinkedIn is a strong contender as a purpose-built platform. Optimise your profile, connect with relevant contacts and share valuable content to start building traction.
A few more tips to help build your network:
Approach networking with a genuine and helpful mindset. People will always be able to tell if your mindset around networking is just to be ‘out for what you can get’. It’s important for your main priority to be to provide value and to develop and maintain professional relationships with peers and competitors.
Collaborating with other agencies or professionals on projects is an incredibly powerful networking strategy that reaches beyond the immediate project outcomes. It results in lasting relationships, expands your capabilities and you can leverage their audience to expand the reach of your agency.
As much as you want to attain value through your connections, you should also provide as much value and you can do this through knowledge sharing and referrals. Although you may not have the audience and reach that your connections may have, giving back and ensuring you’re giving out as much as you receive will work in your reputation’s favour!
Leveraging social media for building a strong network requires a strategic approach. Create a strong online presence for your agency by choosing the relevant platforms for your target audience. There’s no use jumping on SnapChat if none of your audience uses it. 👻
They’re not called social networks for no reason. They were built to expand your network with images, videos, posts and messages that you can access at your fingertips. So make the most of being able to reach and engage with potential clients and industry influencers instantly.
A great way to get your agency out there is to actively engage with your connections and followers. This means not only replying to comments on your posts but interacting with other people’s posts with comments, likes and shares as well.
Keep your audience coming back by sharing valuable content that keeps them engaged and wanting more. This can include industry insights, articles, tips and updates. Be sure to assert yourself as a valuable source of information in your industry.
Social adverts are an invaluable tool in building your network and getting your digital services in front of people who may not ordinarily see it. The great thing about social ads is that you’re able to define your audience based on behaviours and interests. So the people that the ad will be placed in front of are exactly the right audience for your digital marketing agency.
Although your agency is predominately online, offline marketing is a gold mine. Organising or participating in industry-specific events or workshops is the perfect way to advertise your business, or meet new connections.
There is a certain rapport you’re able to build much quicker in person than you’d be able to do over a networking platform online. So when you’re able to attend in-person events, such as networking mixers, business meet-ups and workshops, we recommend you jump at the chance and show off your wit and charisma. ✨
Additionally, while at these in-person events utilise the opportunity to collect business cards and make a point of letting your new connection know that you’ll reach out to them.
Offering your expertise in the way of speaking at future events or conferences will give your digital agency increased visibility and it positions you as an authority within your industry. Furthermore, it’s an incredible opportunity to showcase your digital marketing agency’s work and open up opportunities for new business and collaborations.
Before going full pelt into the world of networking be sure to set specific goals for your networking activities. You’ll want to be able to collect data, which will tell you which of your networking efforts is yielding the most results, so you can refine your strategy for that networking channel and put your focus into that.
The key here is to track key metrics such as referrals and new business opportunities and have a record of where they have come from and how much it costs you to acquire those referrals and new clients.
You’ll need to review the ROI of your networking efforts, to ensure that they’re sustainable going forward. For example, you may fly abroad to a conference, and bag 30 new clients, but if the cost of acquisition is triple that of the income you’ll get from those new clients, then it’s time to reevaluate whether you visit this conference again.
One thing we can promise is that you won’t get it right the first time, so be open to making necessary adjustments to your networking strategy, to ensure that you’re putting your time, money and efforts into the right networking channel.
Networking is an essential part of expanding your agency’s reach. It’s an intentional effort to create and nurture meaningful connections that offer benefits to both parties. Networking for digital agencies is as crucial as the quality of the product itself, after all, what’s the point in having an amazing product or service if no one knows it exists?
In addition to shouting about your digital marketing agency and how great it is, you want to build industry influence and authority to make sure your agency is perceived as a trusted source.
So if there’s anything you should take from this post, is that you should 100% create a networking strategy and implement it as soon as possible.
If you don’t network, you’re missing out on so many ways to expand the reach of your agency and secure a robust future.
👋 The Insites Team
25th January 2024
21st December 2022