Jan 9, 2014 8:00:00 AM
Posted by Lindsay DeFeo
If you’re debating an investment in inbound marketing or evaluating different vendors to help in the process, you may be wondering what your role in the process will look like.
After all, your business is central to everything that will go on; it’s your brand that’s being promoted and your products being sold.
Understandably, some businesses will be concerned about the level of involvement and the time commitment necessary on their part. Other businesses will be excited about taking an active role.
To help you better understand what’s involved, we’ve broken out the different areas you should expect to be involved in and the tasks you’ll be responsible for to help make your campaign a success.
1. Developing Buyer Personas
For your campaign to be a success, an agency needs to understand your customers – and who knows them better than your business? To get the ball rolling and help craft a sound strategy, you’ll be asked to fill out a questionnaire to help us learn about your ideal customer.
This is done before anything else and is a cornerstone of the program. It’s a small time investment upfront that will make a world of difference down the line.
2. Provide Social Guidelines & Ongoing Approval Requirements
Social channels are an enormous part of inbound campaigns. These earned media channels will be crucial to leverage for content promotion and community building, and as such, we’ll need you to help us establish the tone, voice and boundaries for usage in order to keep everything consistent.
Things you’ll be asked include:
- Does your company have an established social voice and strategy?
- What are the social limitations and company-specific boundaries you have in place?
- At what stage will you need to review and approve items before they are posted?
- What will the review process look like, and who will be responsible?
A uniform and consistent review process will not only give you peace of mind in knowing that what’s being published meets your quality standards, but will also allow you to predict the amount of involvement you’ll need to put into reviewing and evaluating on a monthly basis.
The more hands-on you want to be, the more time will be required on your side – which is why having a set of well-defined guidelines for content creators to draw from is so important.
3. Providing Access to Social Channels
Just like any parent would be hesitant to hand over the keys to their Ferrari, we understand that your branding and communication aren’t something you want to surrender to just anyone.
This is why so much time and attention is devoted to the previous steps: learning how your business communicates. Defining the boundaries and understanding your customers so that we can promote your content directly without relying on your internal teams.
As we earn your trust, we’ll ask you to give us access to these channels to make the promotion process more efficient and seamless with the other work being done on your behalf. This will alleviate some of the burden on you and your team, allowing you to focus your energies in other areas.
4. Give Insights into the Sales Process
Any good marketing campaign is tied back to sales. To report on how we’re performing, we’ll need to understand how sales are tracked and reported on.
Some of the insights we’ll be looking for you to provide include:
- What CRM systems do you use?
- Are you able to and comfortable with providing us with access to those systems? (This can eliminate the need for ongoing reporting from your internal team)
- Can a weekly or monthly sales report be generated for us to evaluate? Again, inbound marketing efforts must be tied back to sales to know if they’re proving effective.
- How does your sales process work?
- Does your team have the capacity to handle an increase in leads generated?
It may feel a bit strange to have a digital agency plugged into your sales funnel – especially if you came into the relationship of the mindset that online marketing was something you paid someone else to go away and do on their own.
As you can see, it’s a far more collaborative approach rooted in measurable metrics that need to be carefully tracked and reported on.
5. Set Up Google Analytics/Analytics Platform Access
Last but not least, we’ll need access to your analytics platform. This is a crucial to the process, as it will give us access to data that will help us test, improve and refine our efforts to bring you the greatest ROI.
We’ll Make it Easy.
Inbound marketing necessitates your involvement – but it needn’t be an incredible time burden. At every step of the way, we’ll provide the documentation and support required to make the process run quickly, smoothly and unambiguously.
Just a few hours of your involvement is all that’s asked – and with the right agency relationship, that time will be well invested.
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