In the fast-paced landscape of digital marketing, the quality of leads generated is a pressing concern for both agencies and their clients. This issue is not just a metric for client satisfaction but also a litmus test for an agency’s expertise and market understanding. Sam Carlson, one of the co-founders of UpHex, recently addressed this topic in a live video session. Aimed at agencies operating under a traditional Social Media Marketing Agency (SMMA) model or those transitioning their SMMA into a Software as a Service (SaaS) model, the session was a goldmine of insights. This blog post aims to distill those key takeaways.
The Hamster Wheel Syndrome
Agencies following the traditional SMMA model often find themselves stuck in a “hamster wheel” of sorts. Once they scale to around 15 to 20 clients, maintaining lead quality becomes a challenge, leading to a repetitive and unproductive cycle. This is a common pitfall, and understanding its root causes is the first step toward finding a solution.
Problem 1: The Product Isn’t Good Enough
The first hurdle that agencies often face is that their service offering isn’t up to the mark. This doesn’t necessarily imply poor service quality. More often, it means that the agency’s focus is too broad. Agencies that offer generalized services often find that the leads they generate are not as high-quality as those generated by agencies that specialize in a particular niche or sub-niche.
The Importance of Specificity
The solution to this problem lies in the specificity of both the offer and the target audience. For example, an agency that specializes in services for chiropractors might generate a reasonable number of leads at an acceptable cost when promoting general chiropractic services. However, the quality of these leads may be subpar because the services are commoditized, leaving price as the only variable. To overcome this, the agency should focus on a sub-niche within the broader category, offering something unique that can’t be easily commoditized.
Problem 2: Selling to the Wrong Customers
The second issue is that agencies often end up selling to the wrong customers. This can be rectified by analyzing the top 20% of customers to identify what they have in common. By focusing on these commonalities, agencies can refine their target audience to include only the most promising prospects.
For instance, an agency focusing on chiropractic services might find that their best clients are those who:
- Attract at least 20 new patients per month
- Offer specialized services in addition to chiropractic care
- Employ at least one staff member
By narrowing down the target audience based on these criteria, the agency can significantly improve the quality of the leads it generates.
Problem 3: Setting Better Expectations
The third issue revolves around setting appropriate expectations. A well-structured onboarding system can make a world of difference in client satisfaction and retention. The onboarding process should be broken down into multiple stages, starting from the immediate post-sale phase and extending through several checkpoints during the first few weeks of service.
The Onboarding System
A comprehensive onboarding system ensures that clients are clear about what to expect and are satisfied with the services they receive. This leads to longer client retention and better word-of-mouth referrals.
Pricing Structure at UpHex
For those interested in UpHex’s pricing structure, the company offers scalable pricing options. For $97, you get three sub-accounts, and for $297, you get 10 sub-accounts. Once you exceed 10 accounts, the price is $497, irrespective of the number of sub-accounts you have.
In summary, the quality of leads generated is often a reflection of an agency’s understanding of its niche and target audience. By focusing more narrowly and selling to the right customers, agencies can significantly improve lead quality. Additionally, a well-defined onboarding process can go a long way in ensuring client satisfaction and retention. Therefore, the issue isn’t necessarily that the leads are bad, but that the approach needs refinement and specificity.