The barrier to entry in marketing used to be a lot higher than it is today. In the past, creating a marketing company would involve building incredible relationships with endless news outlets and companies over an extended period of time. You’d also need to invest a small fortune in hiring the right in-house employees, and ensuring you have access to the right tools.
These days, the evolution of the digital world means anyone can create a marketing agency. You don’t even need your own dedicated office to work from. Many of the most popular marketing companies today work from locations around the world, with contractors dotted in a variety of remote locations.
Of course, just because starting a business like this is easier these days, doesn’t mean it hasn’t got any challenges to consider. If you’ve been interested in launching your own digital marketing agency for a while now, here are some of the steps you need to take to make your dream a reality.
Develop Your Skills
The first and most obvious thing you’ll need to do is develop the right skills for your career. Most often, companies will be looking for creators and digital marketing professionals who have degrees in things like business, creative writing, and so on. You can also earn a degree in journalism or media, depending on the kind of marketing you want to do.
Aside from that initial degree, you may need to look into additional certifications and diplomas too. There are certifications online which support the development of various skills, such as social media marketing, influencer advertising, and video creation. When you’re looking for the right student loan on this site, make sure you consider the additional education you might want to get outside of your career.
Plan on updating your skillset frequently with new certifications, diplomas and evidence of your talent as the marketplace evolves. Your customers will want to see that you’re keeping on top of this ever-changing industry.
Before you become a founder of your own digital marketing agency, you need to understand what it’s like to work in one of these companies. This will give you some valuable experience to tap into when you launch your own business. With your skills in place, go and start developing your portfolio as a contractor or freelance gig worker.
You can advertise yourself online, build a website and social media page where you can attract new clients, and start improving your knowledge of your area. Contracting or freelancing gives you a chance to strike out on your own and get a feel for the industry without taking on too much risk.
You’ll get a feel for life as a business owner, and whether you can handle things like tax management, and the stress of not having a consistent income. Freelancing also gives you the opportunity to build relationships with repeat clients and customers who could be your initial source of income when you launch your company. This is an excellent chance for you to get your name out there and start discovering new chances to make money.
Decide on Your Business Model
There’s no one-size-fits-all strategy for building the perfect business. If you’ve ever taken the time to look into marketing agencies lately, you’ll notice that many operate on different business models. Some will charge customers per hour, or word, offering a certain level of content or production value for a specific price.
Some digital marketing agencies prefer to work with retainers. This basically means that a company hires your agents and your skills for a specific amount of time and expects a certain level of service in return. The retainer will dictate how much work you’re going to give for the specific price, and it can reduce any friction when sending out invoices, because your client knows what to expect.
There are also other marketing models which work on commissions and similar strategies. This basically means that you earn a portion of the income that your client earns from a marketing campaign. While this can be a great way to make money if you’re successful in your efforts, it can also be difficult to make a lot of cash this way during the early days.
Choose Your Niche
When choosing your business model remember to think about the kind of digital marketing agency you want to build. It’s often much easier to create a competitive business if you have a specific audience to target. There are companies out there which specifically offer marketing options for technology brands, and others that specialize in things like social media marketing for fashion companies.
While you don’t have to restrict yourself to a very small niche, it helps to know where you do your best work, so you can focus on finding the right clients. You can also consider the kind of marketing that you’re going to offer.
Some companies specialize in content marketing and blog production, whereas others focus more on things like Facebook and Instagram marketing. You could start off by looking at social media marketing and gradually progress to offering video and SEO solutions too. This will often be easier if you’re hiring contractors to build your agency out and scale in the future.
Find Opportunities to Scale
The great thing about running a digital marketing agency, rather than just being a digital freelancer, is that you can scale your business over time by adding more contractors and professionals into the mix. Eventually, you can get to the point of investing in your business, and working on making it grow, while other people deal with the digital marketing clients and projects you take on.
Think about how you want to scale going forward and how you’re going to boost your chances of success. Will you be using contractors and freelancers to keep costs low? How will you find the right people to add to your team? Gradually, as you begin to invest in your company and add new talent, you’ll see more opportunities to scale and grow beginning to open up.