In order to be able to provide services for their clients, digital marketing agencies all utilize at least a few pieces of software. Some of the software was imagined for just the purpose while other pieces of software more indirectly contribute to the level of service digital agencies provide. The combination of the software utilized by such agencies is usually referred to as a marketing stack.
Unfortunately, not all digital marketing agencies are equally as astute when assembling their stacks, compromising their effectiveness, their efficiency, their precision and much, much more. They skip steps, they get caught up in undeserved hype and they do not think everything through as much as possible.
Today, we will try and provide a few tips for agencies that wish to improve their stacks or who are just in the process of assembling their first one.
Classics are Classics for a Reason
Most marketing people like to think they are always in the loop and that they are the ones who will discover this unearthed gem which no one uses yet, but which holds the promise of revolutionizing the way people do digital marketing.
However, the reality is usually much more mundane and the reason why the vast majority of marketing agencies use certain “classics” is that those classics work. There is a reason why certain software solutions become household names – they provide steady results and they can be applied to a number of situations without sacrificing effectiveness.
Every marketing stack needs a few of these solutions, pieces of software that have been around for a while and which have had thousands of happy customers. They may not be too fancy or too exciting, but they should be at the core of every marketing stack, allowing newer players to show off their fancy moves while holding down the fort.
Build it Collaboratively
Marketing agencies are built on people who work there. The software that will be used by the company should only serve as tools they can use to be the best marketers they can be. And like all craftspeople, marketers need to understand the tools they are using. They should like them. They should feel natural to them.
Because of this, the only right way to build a marketing stack as an agency is to consider the input provided by the marketers who work there. It is important not to get overwhelmed or discouraged by the discordant voices and the noise.
Noise is good.
The process will involve a number of rounds where people suggest the solutions they have used previously in their career; where people discuss various choices, the pros and cons of different solutions; where various factors are considered (pricing models, integrations, user-friendliness, etc.) and where the final choice is made collaboratively, after all of the facts are put on the table.
This is the safest way to ensure that the agency will not be throwing money on a piece of marketing software that no one will use (for whatever the reason).
Consider the Clients
When all is said and done, the marketing stack that a digital agency employs should work to a very simple goal – to provide the clients with the best possible results and experience.
This is why a marketing stack should always include at least one piece of software whose purpose it will be to show the clients what is being done on their account and how their campaigns are going. Of course, we are talking something more serious than just an Excel table with a few statistics. We are talking a modern digital marketing dashboard where clients will see everything of importance for the work their agency is doing for them and where they will be able to see what results they are getting.
It goes without saying that this is not the only way in which agencies have to consider their clients when building their stacks. If there are parts of the work they do which requires involvement from the client side, it is best to use software solutions that are well-known as being user-friendly since not that many clients will have experience with such software. It is also crucial to ensure the security of all client data as remote access to data has been shown to be unsecure in many cases.
Considering one’s clients should also inspire agencies to procure the most cost-effective solutions for their work, software that will not have to be paid for out of their clients’ pockets but that will still help greatly with the work that has to be done.
Building a marketing stack for a digital marketing agency requires a lot of consideration, research and collaboration. However, it is something that simply has to be done. Without the right tools, even a fantastic team of marketers can do only that much in today’s chaotic world of digital marketing.