The Agency Growth Blog - For Owners Who Want Growth

Inbound Marketing Agency Owners Want To Know - Do I Need A Sales Person?

Posted by Mike Lieberman on Jun 12, 2019 7:22:00 AM

I talk to a lot of agency owners who are handling both sales and client services for their agencies. They might have a couple of marketing consultants who are also working with clients but when it comes to the client engagement, the owners are still very much involved.

The question they ask me is, “Do I need a salesperson?” Or sometimes, “When should I hire a salesperson?”

It’s a good question for growing agencies. But my answer is almost always the same. I ask them, “Do you like sales or taking care of the clients?” This answer usually requires some soul searching. What I mean is, that you can’t do both.  You have to pick either selling your services to new clients or taking care of current clients.”

The answer is important if you're planning on hiring a salesperson.

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Topics: Sales Process, inbound Agency Sales Process

The 6 Secret Questions You Have To Ask Prospects During Your Sales Process To Close More New Clients Faster

Posted by Mike Lieberman on Apr 10, 2019 7:46:00 AM

We got three new clients at Square 2 to help kick start April on the new business side. But it’s not always so easy and over the past six months we’ve been working hard to make our sales process remarkable and an experience for our prospects.

One part of that process is the questions we ask our prospects during out Guided Sales Process. Some of those questions are not so easy to ask but we’ve found that they help us qualify, uncover key issues buried in our prospects’ business and help us have more strategic conversations with our prospects.

Here are the six secret questions that add big value to our sales process and they’ll help you add the same value to your sales process.

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Topics: Sales Process, inbound Agency Sales Process

Prospects Are Confused: Build Your Inbound Marketing Agency’s Sales Process To Help

Posted by Mike Lieberman on Mar 28, 2018 7:30:00 AM

We recently won a large retainer client and the feedback from our prospect was that they were confused. In fact, our contract stated that they recently made a $60 million-dollar purchase decision that was less complicated than their decision around which agency to hire.

This is very consistent with what we’re seeing in a wide variety of client situations. You can pretend that this isn’t happening, or you can take action to deal with the dynamics of our market. In a recent Agency Unfiltered episode, I filmed at the HubSpot Studios in Boston. I talked extensively on how your sales process needs to be adjusted or re-engineered in consideration for your prospect’s buyer journey.

If you want to check out the episode which had over 500 attendees live, click here to watch it.

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Topics: inbound Agency Sales Process

Are You Afraid To Sell $20,000 A Month Retainer Engagements?

Posted by Mike Lieberman on Jan 31, 2018 7:49:00 AM

Selling larger inbound retainer clientsI hear this all the time. I can’t charge what I want because…fill in the blank here. “We’re too new,”  “We’re too small,” “Our customers are too little,” “They can’t afford a bigger retainer,” “We’re not good enough yet,” “We’re trying to win the business,” “We’re not a Diamond Partner yet” or “We’re not Square 2 Marketing.” It’s all bullshit, honestly. You don’t have to be any of these things to get paid true value for the services you’re providing your clients.

I’m speaking from personal experience. You might not know this about us, but we used to be just like you. Much smaller, hungry for new clients and much less certain about our abilities to produce big time results for our clients. We used to sell $3,000-a-month engagements. We sold these for years and signed up a lot of new clients at that level. But we quickly learned these were click crack, a fast track to unprofitable, unhappy clients and a team of unhappy people servicing these unhappy clients. It was dark times for Square 2 Marketing.

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Topics: inbound Agency Sales Process, larger retainers

Get A New Inbound Marketing Agency Client In 60 Days

Posted by Mike Lieberman on Aug 16, 2017 7:03:00 AM

New Business Remains The Biggest Obstacle To Growth For Inbound Agency Owners

Anyone even close to the agency life knows that agency new business development, sales and getting new clients is the life blood of the agency. It’s not an inbound marketing agency challenge, it’s a challenge for all agencies everywhere.

I hear it every day.

“We lost a client and we don’t have any new ones coming on.”
“If we could just sign a couple of new retainer clients, we’d be great.”
“I have to cut costs because we can’t sign any new clients.”

What’s going on? We’re the ones who are supposed to be the experts at attracting new eyeballs to our businesses, helping those people get comfortable with our companies and then getting them to sign our agreements. Right? Clearly there appears to be a disconnect. But someone is closing business. At Square 2 Marketing, we close between three and five new clients a month. I’d like to think that qualifies us to know what we’re talking about and if we can do it, you can too.

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Topics: inbound agency new business development, new business development, Sales Process, inbound Agency Sales Process

8 Upgrades You Need Today To Sell Sales Enablement Services Tomorrow

Posted by Mike Lieberman on Jul 19, 2017 7:03:00 AM

It sounded good on paper, right? We’ll sell inbound sales services and sales technology just like we sold inbound marketing services and marketing technology. We’ll get bigger retainers. We’ll keep our clients longer and we’ll be even more valuable to them—helping them close the leads we generated for them.

How’s it going? It’s been almost a year since HubSpot rolled out their Growth Stack, Full Funnel concepts. They’ve been training agency owners to sell sales enablement services and sales tech but from what I’ve seen and the many conversations I’ve had with agency owners, it’s been a slow go.

At Square 2 Marketing, we’ve been delivering sales services for the past 10 years. We have a sales practice and people who have expertise in planning, delivery and optimization of sales enablement. It’s not easy and it’s completely different than marketing.

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Topics: inbound Agency Sales Process, inbound sales, inbound sales services, sales enablement

Your Sales Process Is Killing Your Chances Of Signing New Inbound Marketing Agency Clients

Posted by Mike Lieberman on Jun 13, 2017 10:05:00 AM

Three Out Of Four New Clients Said, “We Chose You Because Of Your Sales Process”

On average Square 2 Marketing closes three to five new clients every single month. Granted sometimes they come in bunches, no new clients for three weeks and then three new clients in a single week, but you get the idea.

With all those data points, I’ve been asking our new clients why they chose use over other agencies and the answers are startling. “You took the time to listen to us.” “You and your team demonstrated expertise during the sales process.” “Your recommendations were exactly what we asked for and were aligned perfectly with our stated challenges.”

I want you to notice that not ONE SINGLE new client stated we were the cheapest. Or that we offered the most value for their budget. We got them to trust us and the other agencies didn’t. Let’s be crystal clear. We don’t win every opportunity and sometimes we fail to get them to trust us, but our process produces the right kind of leads and it helps us close the clients who are the best fit for our agency.

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Topics: inbound agency new business development, new business development, Sales Process, inbound Agency Sales Process

10 Ways To Enhance Your Agency Sales Experience To Drive 4 New Clients Every Month

Posted by Mike Lieberman on May 30, 2017 11:05:00 AM

Agency Owners Have Spoken, Getting New Clients Is The Top Priority

I recently asked a bunch of new clients why they chose Square 2 Marketing and the response was very interesting, 68% mentioned the sales process. That was shocking to us. If your agency sales process makes or breaks your chances to get new clients then the experience you deliver to your prospects is critical to closing new clients.

Just to be clear, this is more than practicing Inbound Sales. This is about creating such a differentiated experience that prospects say to themselves, “we have to hire this company.” That should be your goal from the very first touch point all the way through to the experience they have right after they sign your agreement paperwork.

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Topics: Sales Process, inbound Agency Sales Process

Are You Getting Leads For Your Inbound Marketing Agency? Are You Closing New Clients?

Posted by Mike Lieberman on May 2, 2017 7:03:00 AM

If You Can’t Get Them For The Agency, How Can You Be Sure You Can Get Them For Clients?

Agencies 2 Inbound has worked with almost 100 inbound marketing agencies over the past two years. By far, the most frequently asked question during our sessions is about getting more leads and signing more new clients. It’s not anecdotal anymore. Inbound marketing agency owners need help with their own marketing and sales.

Some of the first guidance I provide to owners is to do inbound for their own agencies. Do it early and often. Make it a priority, dedicate resources to it and use it as a test bed to learn inbound marketing. Two very positive outcomes result from this approach. First, you’ll get better at inbound so you’ll see better results from clients and second, you’ll have more leads coming into the agency to drive your own sales results and company growth.

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Topics: Inbound Marketing Agency, inbound Agency Sales Process, inbound agency marketing

How Does Business Development Stack Up At Your Inbound Marketing Agency?

Posted by Mike Lieberman on Aug 11, 2016 5:30:00 PM

Did you know that 44% of salespeople give up after one follow-up?  The average sales person only makes two attempts to reach a prospect.  Eighty percent of sales require five follow-up phone calls after the meeting.  Research shows that 35-50% of sales go to the vendor that responds first. 

Are you making some of these mistakes? Are your clients making some or all of these mistakes? What do you do about it and what’s the impact to revenue if you can fix all of or at least most of these basic blocking and tackling mistakes inherent in your sales process? The answer is significant!

Even the simplest sales process improvements, when properly designed, deployed, managed and tracked produces major improvements in all of the key metrics.

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Topics: Sales Process, inbound Agency Sales Process, inbound sales, inbound sales services, sales process mapping

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