30% of Businesses will Hire New Ad Agencies

30%ofbusinesseswillhirenewadagencies

After the unexpected market shifts in 2020, businesses are taking stock of their advertising strategies and tactics. To ensure a solid future, 30% of businesses will hire new ad agencies to help them operate in the new normal. Here’s what businesses expect to change in the coming months and what they are looking for in a marketing services partner.

The 2021 Setup Marketing Relationship Survey reveals that 30% of brands will likely seek out a new agency in the next six months. While marketers may have pulled back on some of their promotional and branding efforts early in the pandemic, they’re planning to spend more this year. And they are looking for specific aspects in their new marketing partners:

  • Chemistry and creativity 92%
  • Understanding of their business 90%

If you’re expecting to pitch a new client, remember that they are likely to be checking you out long before they reach out to you. Your online profile can build credibility in advance if you show examples of past creativity. You can also increase the chances of winning a contract if you make content available that demonstrates your competence in serving clients in their industry.

Where Businesses Will Increase Marketing Spend in 2021

The huge increase in online commerce since the start of the pandemic has signaled to marketers that they need to maintain visibility by using key digital channels. Businesses will invest more in these digital channels by the following percentages:

  • Content Marketing 59.6%
  • Video 59.5%
  • Digital Media 54.3%
  • Website/​UX 52.2%
  • Social Media/​Influencer Marketing 50.0%

If you’re helping a client determine how to allocate their increased content marketing budget, they’ll need to know about the kinds of content that sway the purchase decisions of their target audience. You can find that information in the AudienceSCAN profiles available at AdMall by SalesFuel. Beyond that, the content must appear in the right places and at the right times to capture the attention of the audience. A B2B buyer might be far more interested in a white paper. A consumer may listen to what a local social media influencer has to say about a new flooring product, for example.

How to Find New Clients

With so many businesses looking for new marketing partners, you have a unique opportunity this year. What is the best way to find new clients? Like most agencies and digital marketing services providers, you may be using referrals (90%), partnerships (including vendors) 48%, and your agency website and social channels (30%). All other methods add up to 29%. In the Setup survey, 56% agency respondents pointed out that they hope brand partners will listen to their and maintain reasonable expectations. In fact, 12% of agencies believe “brand expectations often exceed budgets.” When you’re selling, you’ll need to emphasize the value of what you’re offering to win a new contract.

The businesses you’re pitching use these resources to find an agency or digital marketing services provider.

  • Outside organization referrals 80%
  • Inside organization referrals 70%
  • Word-​out-​mouth 69%
  • All other 33%

This data serves as more evidence that clients are checking you out long before you’re invited to respond to a request for proposal. You can lay the groundwork now for winning more business by improving the online content prospects can access about you and your services. Businesses are even more interested than their marketing partners in maintaining a transparent relationship (65%). And 13% “want more value for less money from their agencies.”

30% of Businesses Will Hire New Ad Agencies

2021 could be the year of big opportunity for your agency, especially if you offer digital marketing services. Businesses are ready to make changes and grow their market share as consumers open their wallets to celebrate the end of the pandemic. You can make the most of this momentum by improving your organization’s credibility and demonstrating the value of your services.

Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.