A Valentine's Day Conversation

 
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It’s Valentine’s Day! The day to show those closest to you how much you care.

I’m not talking about taking your partner to his/her favorite restaurant or bringing home the perfect box of chocolates and cutest teddy bear you can find. I’m talking about that other important relationship in your life – your agency relationship. But what makes a great client/agency relationship? You might be surprised how similar this relationship is to your personal relationships.


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1. Do your research.

Living in the digital age, we all know how dating works today. You meet someone and what’s the first thing you do? You Facebook stalk or Google him/her. A client’s business is no different.

What the client actually says:

We need someone who really knows our brand and understands our business objectives.

What the client REALLY wants to say: 

We don’t have time to teach you all of the things.

 

We get it – you have 99 problems, but getting your agency up to speed on your business shouldn’t be one. Make sure your agency is a team full of self-starters who don’t like to waste a single second. Whether it’s evaluating what your competitors are doing, studying the most recent customer research, or analyzing existing brand marketing plans, they should do what it takes to know everything they can about what is happening in the industry. Pair this with intelligent, focused download sessions from the people who know the business best – you – and you have a recipe for success.


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2. Show them you care.

How do you show your significant other you care? Maybe you light some candles and cook a romantic dinner? While you wouldn’t cook your client a romantic dinner, the sentiment is still the same – go above and beyond to show you care.

What the client actually says:

Yeah, things are a little crazy, but we are just trucking through.

What the client REALLY wants to say: 

HELP!! If you can take on some of this work, we will love you long time.

 

Everyone needs help – we are humans, not robots. Something that’s always on an agency’s mind is, “What else can we be doing? How else can we help?” Maybe your company is implementing a new initiative and you need someone to bounce ideas off of. Or maybe there is some social campaign you want to launch, but there just aren’t enough people or hours in the day to follow through? We can help – that’s what we’re here for. And we WANT to help. We want you to reach your goals without pulling your hair out along the way.


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3. Avoid getting stuck in a relationship rut.

What do you do when your relationship is in a rut? You look for new activities to do together – cooking class, goat yoga, etc. Don’t keep doing the same ol’, same ol’ – it’s not good for anyone. 

What the client actually says:

What you did for the project worked well last time. We can do that again.

What the client REALLY wants to say: 

Yeah, that worked well and great, but what else you got?

 

Something we firmly believe in is staying current on everything happening in the industry – including that mystical idea of “digital.” Look, the idea of a "digital agency" is redundant. All agencies need to be savvy and scrappy about understanding the newest developments and overarching trends driving them. If they're not surfacing these for you, you're not getting your money's worth. In our minds, it’s fantastic if something has worked in the past, but we are always thinking of what else we can do to really push something over the top, and we present those ideas to our clients. As long as the industry is evolving, so are we.


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4. Transparency + Trust = Magic

OK, this CAN be scary in your personal relationship. You will probably find yourself up s*** creek without a paddle if your significant other asks “how does this look?” and you reply, “Oh no – that’s not a good look at all!” But don’t let honesty scare you in this relationship.

What the client actually says:

Do you think this design element could help enhance this project?

What the client REALLY wants to say: 

We are trusting you to tell it like it is.

 

No one knows your brand better than you – we know that. But you should be able to count on your agency to speak up if they think something might not hit the mark. We know there’s a reason why you are asking for that specific design element, and we love to collaborate and talk through ideas together. We have learned that, by asking questions and being honest, this allows us to dig deep and understand where you’re coming from and how we get you what you want. We may not agree, but you can always trust that we will tell you what we think – honestly


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5. Communication is the key to success (duh).

Keep those communication lines open, people! It is important to be in constant communication with the client and let them know what’s been going on.

What the client actually says:

Keep me apprised on how the project is progressing.

What the client REALLY wants to say: 

I need to know about anything critical.

 

You may be sick of hearing from us – seeing our name show up in your inbox or hearing your phone ring only to see our number in the Caller ID might make you say, “You AGAIN?!” – but that’s because we want you to know what’s going on. By being in constant communication with you, it’s our goal to alleviate just a little stress from your day-to-day, and you can rest assured that we have your back.

It’s funny how similar this relationship is to our personal ones, and we work our asses off to give clients what they need, when they need it. From knowing your brand inside and out to telling you the truth about an initiative that might not give you the biggest bang for your buck, we’re here every minute along the way to show just how much we value this relationship. And no matter how many curveballs are thrown our way, we will always find ways to hit them out of the park (OK, I know that was cheesy, but our office is across the street from a baseball field – I needed to throw some sort of baseball analogy in here).

 
 

 
                Chelsea McNally              Sr. Account Executive

               Chelsea McNally

            Sr. Account Executive

 
Jessica Young