If you’re wondering how to get more clients, you’re not the only one. Agencies and freelancers are constantly on the lookout for different ways through which they can get new clients and improve their revenue. Once you tie clients down on a monthly retainer, you can then focus on maximizing your resources and bringing on more client.
If you want more clients, there are a number of different techniques that you can try. Here are some of the best tips to help you find new clients for your growing agency.
Let’s have a look at some ways to get more clients.
- Find Your Niche
- Know What Your Client Wants
- Leverage Social Proof
- Leverage Your Network
- Use Guest Posting to Your Advantage
- Work on Developing Strategic Partnerships
- Ask for Testimonials
- Improve Your Cold Emails
- Build a Compelling Website
- Offer Referral Discounts
- Double Down on Social Media
- Tips from Agency Experts to Find Clients
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How to Get More Clients For Your Agency – 9 Practical Ways
In the following paragraphs, we shall explore some simple ways for finding new clients.
1. Find Your Niche
Not all agencies have the resources or expertise to cater to every industry. In all likelihood, being a Jack-of-all-trades isn’t going to cut it with potential clients. Demand is high for specialized labor, so narrow down your options, identify a niche you can satisfy, and stick to it. If you want to learn how to get more clients, you have to narrow your focus.
You can specify your niche in terms of the market you want to sell your services to, like startups, ecommerce, healthcare or non-profits. Or, it can be in terms of the services you provide. For instance, some agencies specialize primarily in web design. Others specialize primarily in ancillary services like content marketing. Here’s an example from iSynergy:
Their primary focus is content marketing, and their website reflects that too. If you are wondering how to find clients relevant to your niche, it’s important that you tailor your website to reflect this accordingly.
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2. Know What Your Clients Want
Your blog content can create a huge impact on your audience. If you are constantly looking at tips for how to get more clients, you may want to fix this by offering value. So, make sure you develop non-spammy content that your clients would find interesting enough to read.
Focus on providing value in your content.
For instance, if you are a web designer who’s wondering how to get web design clients, you may want to try writing a piece on how readers can identify good design elements to bolster their page structure. Or you could create a listicle on the various web design tools that your agency uses to streamline its work for clients. If you are a copywriter, you can talk about how readers can ensure the tone of voice in their communication adheres to their brand values.
It’s like indirect selling. Still confused about how to get clients? Start thinking like one.
You could also create a roadmap for your client’s buying journey. Here’s an example:
3. Leverage Social Proof
Customer reviews and testimonials can dramatically boost the trustworthiness of your digital agency. Genuine reviews mirror the authenticity of your clients’ endorsement, also see our webinar on Mastering Client Communication Through Efficient Feedback Collection, which will help you become a better communicator.
When they are stumped about how to get more clients, many agencies start by posting testimonials and social proof about their work.
Check out this agency review of SmashBrand:
Post testimonials on your social media profiles, such as Facebook and Twitter, to promote your work and give potential clients a reason to choose you. Leverage social proof to succeed in a highly competitive industry.
4. Leverage Your Network
Completed a project successfully? Ask for a referral. Offer the client a referral if they bring on another client. Leveraging your network lets you broaden your horizons.
Promote your content and services on social media platforms, especially professional ones like LinkedIn. People are actively looking to connect with service providers on such platforms, so use these to your advantage.
If you have been looking at tips for how to get more clients relevant to your niche, ignoring LinkedIn is a terrible idea. It’s one of the most popular networks for professionals. Learn to use it to your advantage.
For instance, if you write a post, share it on LinkedIn. Promote your offering on multiple platforms, and let your clients know that if they bring someone new, they will be rewarded for it.
Use your professional contacts to maximize your reach and brand visibility. Participate in group discussions and pinpoint your ideal clients according to industry, company, and location using a LinkedIn Premium account. So if your agency targets startups, browse and join related groups and start conversation with members. For example, If somebody wants knowledge on how to get web design clients, offer them unbiased advice and help them figure solutions out. This is how you build trust.
Once you notice that members are showing interest, add them to your prospects’ list and then pitch them.
5. Use Guest Posting To Your Advantage
You can attract more eyeballs and Google crawlers by posting listicles, and detailed step-by-step how-to-guides on your campaign successes and strategies on groups and forums.
Guest blogging is a common tactic that agency marketers use to stand out from their competitors. Take the example of Syed Irfan Ajmal, Managing Director of UK-based creative agency Digital Marketing ROI. His SEMrush article on achieving $200K in revenue for his client was designed to promote his agency’s inbound marketing solutions.
Notice how the author chose SEMrush for his guest post. It is a website read by entrepreneurs and small business owners who are keen enough to increase their website’s search engine rankings. In other words, the article struck the right chord with the agency’s target audience.
To make sure your guest post performs well and is read by the right people, you must choose the right niche website(s). For this, type inurl: “keyword” + “write for us”. If you want to write a guest post on ‘web development’, use the following query:
Other tips and tricks to make your guest blog posts stand out may include, but are not limited to:
- Writing how-to guides, listicles, or success stories
- Using enticing numbers and figures in your titles
- Using strong visuals in article banner(s)
- Using visual content to improve readability and engage people
- Using a strong call-to-action to your website or work on creating high-converting landing pages
6. Work on Developing Strategic Partnerships
Some business owners worry about how strategic partnerships might affect their client relationships or client management strategy. But you are only as good as the partnerships and network you create. By developing strategic partnerships with companies that do not operate in your sector, you make it easy to find new clients for your agency.
For instance, if your agency offers web development services, build strategic partnerships with a content marketing or hosting provider. This way, if any of their clients require web development or design-related services, yours will be the first name they suggest to the client.
This works both ways. Your strategic partners will send clients your way, but they will expect you to do the same. It’s a win-win situation for both parties.
Strategic partnerships can go a long way in helping you get new clients. Try to partner with non-competing agencies in separate verticals, and then target their audiences. It’s a great way to get new clients and tap into different markets.
7. Ask for Testimonials
You need to actively ask for testimonials and reviews from your clients. Why? Well, it’s not uncommon to find sponsored or fake testimonials of clients for agencies on review sites. If you’re hoping to attract clients from such websites, it’s an uphill task to build a good reputation. For this reason, credibility matters the most.
Here are some common platforms where customers can leave reviews for your services..
With more than 44,000 customers in 100+ countries, HubSpot gives its partnered agencies full leverage in terms of reviews. Here’s an example of SmartBug Media:
ii. Agency Spotter
This is an excellent agency directory with nearly 17,029 service-type agencies. Below is an example of a review page of Loomis Agency. Notice how it shows the overall rating on the right in terms of its creativity, quality, and other metrics.
Clutch.co is one of the largest review aggregators. It is an agency directory that you can use to find comprehensive reviews of any agency. Many people use Clutch.co to find a suitable firm for their next project. Here’s how an agency page looks on Clutch.co:
Another excellent agency directory that you may want to list is Unspun. Unspun categories agencies based on their location, which helps seekers segment their audience. This automatically increases your chances of getting serious queries from interested prospects.
8. Improve Your Cold Emails
Wondering how to get clients for digital marketing? You might want to try cold emails. Cold emails can result in an empty task sheet, getting filled with work over the weekend. But the way you write those emails plays a major role.
You could improve your cold email writing skills by watching tons of videos available online or by doing an online course. Sending carefully drafted emails will result in higher open rates, which will ultimately increase the chances of successful conversions.
As important as it is to write good emails, keeping track of their performance is also very crucial. Therefore, keep a check on the results. List down all the objectives you aim to achieve through those emails and assess them for performance accordingly.
9. Build a Compelling Website
Confused about how to get clients for digital marketing? Have you tried creating a compelling website?
First and foremost, make sure your website is about your clients, and the value they will get from your agency. Highlight your success stories and the kind of results your team has been able to achieve in the past.
Secondly, showcase your portfolio on your website. This will create credibility and result in a sense of trust in your work. You can also upload case studies, to further reinforce the claims of your industrial expertise. Creating a viable Meet the Team page is also a great idea for agencies that want to make their websites more personable.
10. Offer Referral Discounts
Offering referral discounts is a great way to get new clients. All you have to do is to offer a referral discount to customers who bring others into the business. For instance, you can offer a discount to existing clients to refer you to new ones. For every successful referral, you can also offer a discount to new clients that you onboard.
Establishing a detailed referral program is a great way to motivate existing clients to bring new ones to the table. Here’s an example from JFR Staffing, a company that primarily focuses on recruitment services:
As you can see, they clearly detail discounts and the terms and conditions, thus making it easy for every client to know exactly what they stand to gain, and the terms and conditions they must meet to achieve these benefits. Here’s an interesting stat: customers acquired through referrals have a 37% greater retention rate, and you could get 16% more profits if you bring on a referred customer.
11. Double Down on Social Media
The growth of social media means that you simply can’t ignore it as a place to get more prospects and customers. If you don’t already have a Facebook presence, now might be the right time to get started. Create your Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn profiles, and start off by posting offers.
You need to regularly post new content on your social media profiles, especially authoritative content that generates value, in order to get more prospects. You can now also create buttons to host consultations or set up meetings with new clients through Facebook or other platforms like LinkedIn.
12. How Top Marketing, Development and Design Agencies Find Clients?
Why not ask the question to the experts directly. Check out the responses of agency CEOs, marketers and developers who have successfully managed to win more clients than their competitors. The fact is that they ‘had been there and done that.’
1. Create Unique and Genuine Resources
Josh Rubin, CEO, Post Modern Marketing
I won’t give you a typical answer for factors that are effective like SEO, PPC, networking, and so on. But, rather a more specific niche tip of what has worked for me.
Create a unique, genuine resource
One of the most successful things we’ve done over the years is to create resources that our potential customers would find useful. By being helpful, and by giving away something for free, we have started a trustworthy relationship that we would not have normally obtained.
As an example, we have provided a resource about ‘what to do when the website is down?’ The resource ranks in the top three results and helps people diagnose and fix website outage issues. It has helped us get a lot of traffic, but the real winner is our call to action: Free Help In Getting Your Website Back Up.
When someone needs help, we offer them free help with no strings attached. There are no hard sales, no requirements for the visitor to meet, or other pressure tactics. We genuinely help them for free and in turn, build a relationship.
2. Build Reputation in Local Communities
Bobby Reed, CEO, Capitol Tech Solutions
Our agency has a three-pronged approach to obtaining new website clients.
- First is reputation. We put a lot of emphasis on reviews, awards, and certifications. Web design companies don’t have a lot of reviews, so even getting a handful on Yelp or Clutch will propel you to the top. With the awards, we can show that we offer high-quality service, and it helps line-up businesses that are looking to make a splash with their website pages. Our certifications help us win over state or local agency businesses where otherwise we have to continuously bid on jobs.
- Second is our marketing and SEO work. We drive traffic to our website to make people aware of the quality of work we do. We put a good amount of effort into SEO so potential customers can find us, learn about us, and hopefully make that call for a potential business opportunity. Our teams stay abreast of the latest trends and consistently tweak our content so that we can stay in front.
- The third strategy is to get involved in the local community. We focus on attending events, finding local organizations, and getting out in the community every week to meet potential customers and leaders. Meanwhile, this approach takes the longest to close the customers, it leads us to the best value customers who stick with us for the long-term. It also helps us develop a relationship that defines us, helping clients along the way. That’s why we consider it one of the best ways to get clients.
3. Strengthen Your Marketing (SEO, PPC, Email)
Brian Robben, CEO, Robben Media
We’ve narrowed down the customer acquisition strategy to focus on three things.
- First, you need to rank your website on Google for keywords that express buyer intent like a website design company.
- Next, start running ads that target a specific audience on Google, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Make a strong offer or guarantee and your conversions will improve.
- Lastly, don’t forget about the tried and tested approach of writing a custom cold email to a prospect. Rather than copying and pasting the same message to everyone in the city, write a custom email that educates, offers value, and makes a strong offer at the very end.
We’ve done these three things ourselves to get our initial clients and continue to do this to scale our agency.
4. Face-to-Face Networking
David Waiter, Sr. Digital Marketer, Direction Inc
An important aspect of our strategy is to work offline. We don’t think many agencies employ this tactic as much as we do. We attend multiple tech meetups, panel discussions, and start-up competitions every week. During those events, we network heavily with other attendees as a way to promote our brand and services. It’s all about getting our face out there in the local community.
Over the last several months, we’ve had hundreds of valuable face-to-face conversations. We strive to be more conversational and less transactional since our ultimate goal is to build an ongoing relationship. It’s a slow, long-term strategy for growing our agency, but it seems to work well for us.
5. Build Relationships With Other Agencies and Firms
Brooks Manley, CEO, Brooks Manley Marketing
There are many solid acquisition strategies and funnels for web agencies such as search, email, PPC, and others, to attract more clients. For us, the most effective acquisition strategy revolves around partnerships and referrals; specifically from other agencies and firms that aren’t quite in our price range or vertical. We’ve invested time and resources into these relationships, and regularly see returns.
The reality is that many web agencies have a specific niche vertical and price range. These agencies often have loads of conversations with prospects who don’t fit their ideal profile. If they know our ideal profile, and we have a strong relationship, it’s easy for them to send the prospects our way.
6. Be a Brand Ambassador for Your Agency
Lysa Miller, Ladybugz Interactive Agency
- Create a great culture that is the foundation of your business success and talk about it.
- Do a good job and then talk about it every day and everywhere and get great reviews and features. (engagement, trust loyalty)
- Be a brand ambassador and thought leader (engagement, trust)
- Rock your SEO using all of the content you have available (interest, search)
- Be everywhere and always tell an engaging story (ads, content, SEO, retargeting, directories, etc.)
7. Find Prospects on Social Media
Alex Kehoe, CEO, Caveni
Organic traffic is one of the best ways to generate interest in your company. However, the competitiveness of ranking in Google can be overwhelming for a new website. That’s where social media and interpersonal networks come in for help.
You should start reaching out to people you know personally first. This includes everyone with a business or business connection that might need your services. Social media is the next best place to look for prospects. You can normally show off the quality of your work to a large audience with little effort; so social prospects are a fantastic way to find clients.
8. Offer Free Consultations
Isabella Markert, Project Manager, Stage Marketing
Content marketing has helped us gain great web design and web development, clients. Most of our clients have found us through blogs or social media posts that address the specific pain points in their niche. We’ve also attracted web clients by offering free consultations about their websites.
9. Pitch Your Services On Call
Eric Allen, CEO, Border West Marketing
In the beginning, I attempted to leverage my strong sales background by
cold calling business owners every weekday pitching our services. The biggest difficulty was finding businesses to call and find clients.
We finally found success by entering an industry we were targeting on Google, starting on the second page, and working our way through the results. I would call every single business from the second-page until results dried up. Our thinking was, “if they weren’t on the first page, then they could use our help. Period.”
By cycling through different industries and locations, we had an infinite source of qualified leads. This is by far where we found the greatest success (but by no means was any of it easy).
Here are some important points to note if you choose this strategy:
- Try to find an industry you know about, or pick one and learn about it. We started with contractors because I knew people in those industries and had a good understanding.
- Target businesses that can afford your services. Someone mowing yards for $40 apiece can’t afford a new website, but a roofing company can.
- Learn how to sell. This is crucial. At some point, you’ll have to speak with a client and close the deal. Read books, watch sales videos on YouTube, and practice your pitch with friends. Get comfortable talking about your product and why you’re going to be better for your clients.
- Be ridiculously persistent when finding ways where to find clients. None of our clients said ‘yes’ the first time we talked. Don’t be afraid to follow up several times (tactfully). Be proud of your product and convince them that it will help their business.
Most of our clients now come from referrals and web searches, but without the initial grind, our company wouldn’t have existed till today.
10. Connect With Entrepreneurs
Stacy Caprio, CEO, Stacy Caprio Inc
One way to get clients is to engage in Facebook groups for entrepreneurs. Joining a local Facebook group is a quick way to establish a personal connection and build trust. This way, you can offer your web design services in a “less-salesy” way. Simply showcase results you have shown to other clients in the group, and interested people will reach out to you.
The quest for finding new ways to acquire more clients and grow your business is a never-ending one. It is a continuous journey.Hopefully, the steps mentioned in this guide will help many agencies to set up a solid footprint to find new and more clients to grow their business.
However, while looking for more clients be careful about what you call a lead and if you need that lead. Lee Jackson, CEO of Event and Cloudways Maverick explains this mistake in the video below.
Which of these methods has been an eye-opener for you? Let us know in the comments section below.
Q1. How can I get clients fast?
Getting clients fast is a matter of deploying high-performing sales campaigns and making sure that the potential customers are able to see the value proposition in your services.
Q2. How do I get clients for my business?
You can get clients by implementing proper sales funnels, running targeted campaigns, and offering great service for market-competitive prices.
Q3. How do you find big clients?
There are several ways to land big clients:
- Start offering authoritative, quality content
- Improve your cold email sequences
- Leverage social proof
- Leverage your network to get an “in”
- Use guest posting to maximize your advantage
- Build a more compelling and interesting website
- Use social media to your advantage
Q4. How do I get my first client?
There are several ways through which you can get your first client:
- Have a unique, well-designed website
- Regularly submit guest posts
- Work on developing strategic partnerships with other businesses
- Focus on a single niche
- Offer your first service at no cost
Arsalan, a Digital Marketer by profession, works as a Startups and Digital Agencies Community Manager at Cloudways. He loves all things entrepreneurial and wakes up every day with the desire to enable the dreams of aspiring entrepreneurs through his work!