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Guaranteed Client Meeting Success: 3 Ways to Help Me, Help You

In her recent post on Bright Local, Sherry Bonelli was talking about guarantees and whether or not they belong in the world of online advertising.

As a business owner myself, I can say that the thought of plunking down 1000’s of dollars for something I don’t totally understand – for which there is little to no assurance will actually work – is a daunting proposition indeed.

This is to say – I get it.

And it’s no doubt this understanding of our buyers apprehension and their fear of the unknown (along with my confidence in our incredible team and what a well executed online marketing campaign can accomplish) probably makes me a decent sales guy despite not really being a great sales guy.

Where it all goes wrong

Generally speaking this fear and lack of guarantee seems to spill over into client meetings.

Here, we digital agencies do everything in our power to slap together enough charts, graphs, analysis, communication threads, outreach attempts, and who knows what else to try to make you feel good about that 4 figure charge to your credit card every month.

According to a post by Matt Umbro on Marketing Land, the average agency should not spend more than 25% of their time in a given month on the reporting aspect on an engagement.

I personally find this amount of time to be too high, especially when dealing with the average small business on a tight budget; are you sure you want us spending 25% of your money every month explaining what we did and why – or would you rather us spend some of that extra time growing your account?

And that of course does not include time spent setting up the meeting and keeping it on track: cancellations, rescheduling, loose agendas, and plenty of account manager playing small business therapist (“yes, I am very sorry to hear that Joey-joe-joe left so unceremoniously…that must be tough.”).

Before you know it, $500 bucks has flown out the window, and we haven’t really accomplished a damn thing.

Help me, help you.

Don’t get me wrong – spending time with our clients and getting to them and their business is critical, but as I mentioned in a post earlier this year, pawning off inefficiencies and calling them ‘customer service’ will be the death of many a digital agency.

There’s got to be a better way.

The Adster way

At Adster, we are constantly looking for ways to increase our value per dollar factor.

Here are 3 ways we can work together to trim time and keep value high, all the while making you feel GOOD about growing your business:

1. Scheduled Meeting Times:

You’re terminally busy. We get it.

But hey, we’re busy too. And if you want us to really take an interest in your business and be your partner in growth, mutual respect is key.

Can’t make the scheduled meeting? No problem, we’d be happy to send you over our prepared recap, and answer your questions via email.

Unless there has been some sort of otherworldly catastrophe on your end (or ours), we’ll chat again – next month.

2. Focusing on what really matters (and talking you out of what doesn’t)

Remember the honeymoon phase? We do!

That’s when we talked about what it was that you really wanted to achieve via digital advertising. It probably had a lot to do with growing your business and generating leads.

We setup KPI’s, and using our super transparent reporting, we’re showing you exactly what it costs to generate results and what it was that drove them.

Yes, we realize you’re not #1 in Google yet for ‘Edmonton Widget Barn’, but wouldn’t you rather be growing traffic and generating new leads?

Thought so.

3. Sticking to an agenda

This ties pretty heavy to point 2, but with a few unique twists.

In our very first meetings with you, we make sure to touch on every area of work we’re involved in, our progress, and measurable outcomes.

Over time we take notes to determine:

  • How satisfied you are in each area of work
  • How interested you are in each area work

From here, we begin to ‘shape’ our reporting in future meetings to make sure we:

  • Go ‘deeper’ on the areas you are most interested in
  • Ask leading questions to reveal why you may not be satisfied in a particular area and make attempts to remedy

Even with this, we’re sure to follow a proven agenda to make sure both parties are being held accountable, and everything runs in a timely manner.

Closing thoughts

By no means do I feel the 3 methods above are the be all / end all, but we’ve had great success with them and our account managers and clients seem happier than ever.

Share your favorite client meeting tips in the comments!