I have been in Digital Marketing for a little over 10 years. I have done everything from building websites to running paid advertising campaigns to implementing marketing automation. The list goes on and on. For about the last 5 years, I have had a strong focus on SEO. It is not that I cannot effectively implement numerous digital marketing strategies; SEO just fits well with how my mind works. It is a natural combination.
In my time I have promoted my own business ventures (At one point I planned on being the world’s best wedding DJ), I have done freelance digital marketing work, graphic design, been on an in-house marketing team, and worked at 2 different Web Design and SEO/Online Marketing agencies (I was the Director of Marketing for one of them). Needless to say, I have been in just about every possible situation one could be in dealing with the full spectrum of marketing things online.
With all of that said, I have had great leaders, horrible bosses, wonderful clients, and nightmarish clients alike. I have seen, first hand, what types of clients and relationships foster the best results as well as which ones are doomed to fail from the start. If you are looking for how to get the most out of your SEO Agency, then read on because I have the inside scoop!
In the agency world, there are 4 main types of clients:
- The Mover and Shaker
- The Silent Assassin
- The Miserable Miser
- The Golden Promoter
The Mover and Shaker
The mover and shaker is a powerful entrepreneur that makes solid decisions in business. Most of these folks are rather successful in business. They are used to calling the shots and getting things done. The funny thing about movers and shakers is that they often completely hinder their SEO agency from getting positive results. Constantly calling the shots is great internally because they know exactly what they are talking about. The problem comes when they step out of their lane of expertise and want to tell their SEO agency what needs to be done. If you are with an SEO agency that you cannot trust to bring you results without you micromanaging every second of their time, you need to do one of two things:
- Hire a different Online Marketing Agency that you can trust.
- Hire an in-house person to handle your online marketing so that you can control how and when things are done.
The mover and shaker clients are never going to get the results they want. This is because instead of letting the agency follow their process to get results, the mover and shaker clients want to meet once a week to discuss how strategy has changed. They always come in with 50 different ideas of what needs to happen. Then, somewhere down the line, I can 100% guarantee you that they are going to wonder why the results from their campaigns are not better. It is because they are not giving the agency the breathing room it requires to get results.
The Silent Assassin
The silent assassin has to be the most dangerous of all SEO clients. This is the client that constantly hinders forward progress by not communicating at all…ever. Working with an agency is a partnership. While agencies do their best to minimize any time required from the client, there are certain times where the specialist is waiting on the client to give them information or approve something in order to move the process forward. When the client just kind of drops out and doesn’t respond to emails, phone calls, etc. they are going to get nowhere. The reason these clients are called the silent assassin is because the ending is always the same. The client will just cancel out of nowhere and cite that they are not getting what they are paying for as the reason for leaving. The reality of this situation is that any agency worth its salt has been working feverishly to get approval on things, or the authority to not seek approval for months at this point.
The Miserable Miser
The miserable miser is the bane of existence for Digital Agencies. Developers, SEO Specialists, and others from the agency wake up in the middle of the night in cold sweats having nightmares about these clients. The miserable miser will never be satisfied. All they ever do is complain. They constantly try to get free work and are almost always late when it comes time to make a payment. The miserable miser can never be pleased. Every time they call, they are bound to cuss someone out. A Lot of times, agencies end up having to fire miserable misers as clients. In other words, the agency decides to no longer work with the client and/or provide any more services.
The Golden Promoter
Oh, the elusive Golden Promoter! Agencies absolutely adore these clients. They often get way more work done on their project than they pay for. These are the clients that truly get it. They know how to effectively leverage the products and services their digital marketing company provides for them. They get above average results. They communicate in a timely manner when the agency needs information or approval from them. They are not scared to bring up concerns they have before it becomes a problem. They allow the agency the room it needs in order to maximize results. You can instantly spot a golden promoter by this statement: “I trust your judgement. You are the expert in this area.” Agencies bend over backwards for these clients. They will almost literally run through a brick wall for them. If a Golden Promoter contacts their account manager, and that account manager is working on any of the other types of clients’ accounts, they will immediately stop what they are doing and switch over the work on the Golden Promoter’s account. The Golden Promoter sings the praises of the agency and sends referrals when they think someone can benefit from the products and services that have brought them such great results.
Why Should You Care?
So now that I spent 4 long paragraphs venting about the types of clients digital agencies deal with, why should you even care about that? Because if you want to get the most out of your website design company, SEO firm, etc. you need to be the Golden Promoter! None of the other types of clients will ever get the results that a Golden Promoter does. Yes, sometimes there are issues that need to be addressed. Even a Golden Promoter has concerns from time-to-time. It doesn’t mean that you just ignore things that are important to you. What it does mean is the following:
- Give your agency the breathing room they need in order to get results. Do not micromanage the crap out of everything they do.
- Understand that while the agency will never be as much of an expert on your business as you, it is most likely that you will never be as much of an expert on the product/service your contact at the agency is providing for you. Let them do what they do best.
- Working with an agency is a partnership. Make sure to respond in a timely fashion when they need information/approval on something so that they can keep moving forward on your project.
- If you are really having a horrible experience for months on end, don’t constantly complain, just move on. Go find another agency that is a better fit for you.
- Make your payments a priority. Agencies are a business just like yours. When they have to wait on payments, it can throw your entire project schedule off.
Don’t Mix The Message
Please do not confuse this post to mean that we don’t genuinely care about each and every one of our clients. I can assure you we do! If you are working on being the Golden Promoter, your agency should be reciprocating by bringing you solid results. They should be communicating with you openly, honestly, and in a timely fashion. They should be addressing concerns before they become a problem. They should be providing support to you when it is needed, not 1 ½ weeks later! They should be doing what they said they would do in the sales process that made you decide to utilize their services in the first place. If you work on being the Golden Promoter, and you are partnered with the right agency, you should find a stress-free, results-filled experience that brings you confidence in your original decision to hire them.
If you don’t feel your agency is reciprocating and you are the Golden Promoter, please be sure to contact us immediately! We would love to talk with you about how we can help.