3 Challenges Digital Agencies Face
If you run or own a digital agency, you know these are challenging times: every day you face your client’s requests to deliver fresh creative solutions.
However, the biggest challenge of all is the one closest to home: to keep your agency one step ahead of competition, or at least to keep up with the crowd. Understanding the top 3 issues digital agencies tackle every day will help you better prepare a plan of attack.
Retaining and developing talent is one of the biggest challenges digital agencies face. According to Digiday, “agencies lose 1 out of 3 employees each year” which clearly has a huge impact on the agency’s ability to respond to clients’ needs and to cope with the ever-evolving landscape. The solution to prevent or overcome this struggle involves a combination of good recruitment, employee education and development, along with a corporate culture that fosters growth, risk taking and innovation.
Customers expectations are rising and the amount of available information makes nearly everyone expect more – and agencies are no exception. According to a 2015 Harris Poll, 82% of US corporate executives said that customers’ expectations of their company were “somewhat” (47%) or “much” (35%) higher than they were three years ago. Similarly, another 2015 study from EMC showed that 93% of worldwide business leaders “blame” technology for most of these new expectations. The question is, how can agencies deal with the pressure to innovate while trying to get the day-to-day done?
There are a few tactics that your team can use to better manage customer’s expectations: set clear goals about the project and about how your agency works, be clear about what happens if delays happen, communicate clearly and regularly, document every decision and, very important, underpromise and overdeliver so your clients are surprised when you deliver much more than they expected. Balance these strategies with big picture thinking. Take time to evaluate your business against the ever-evolving landscape, brainstorm with your team and, especially, reinvent yourself and the processes your agency is using.
Pace of Technology Change
Digital agencies can only bring value to their clients if they are able to stay updated on the latest technologies. However, with the proliferation of digital tools and clients expecting solutions that fit perfectly into their technology platforms, delivering innovative outcomes can become a daunting task.
While you should give time and space for the tech team to refresh and learn new skills – which is usually hard as most of the times agency tech staff is resourced up to 100% – innovative solutions and modern software require deep technical expertise (and you don’t have to be an expert in every technology across the digital world). You need to find a skilled tech partner with whom you’re willing to build a long-term business relationship. This might be hard, especially for the initiates, but your agency will become more commercially attractive to potential customers.
When looking for a technology partner, reach several companies before making a decision, ask them for referrals, request project’s quotes and action plans. To learn more about this topic, check our best practices visual guide for finding the right software vendor.