What Does the Future Hold for Agencies? 3 Leader Weigh In

Do you remember what agencies looked like five years ago?

Whether you’re new to bureau life or a seasoned veteran in the industry, you know that the agency space is constantly changing. And as the business develops, so too do regions for innovation.

We asked three bureau leaders to weigh in on how they consider the industry evolving over the next five years.

Drawing from their own its own experience, they share their predictions below. Learn what they forsee as the biggest areas of interruption for your bureau to capitalize on.

What Does the Future Hold for Agencies?

Like marketing teams, agencies are going to be more and more accountable to tying their efforts to business outcomes, such as revenue funnels or target account qualification metrics. Also like modern marketers, the best agencies will be able to work across all integrated sales and marketing channels, and do so from planning to execution to data analytics a to help customers solve their business and marketing challenges.

With the explosion of MarTech, marketers are taking on more and more responsibility for closed loop marketing data. The responsibility for data is shifting from IT to marketers, and this represents an opportunity for agencies to assist their customers in connecting and syncing data across their multitude of systems, to power the analytics and optimization needed to drive growth.

— Zak Pines, VP of Marketing at Bedrock Data

The agency space must evolve where it’s specialized and can adapt to the trend that most companies are looking to bring things in-house due to velocity, costs, and their own closeness to the brand. As larger clients typically have the two top parts of their budget to paid media and content, agencies will evolve by specializing in producing more branded content on certain platforms( like Snapchat or VR) and/ or find better ways to get paid media in front of customers.

The biggest area of interruption is finding ways to commercialize new technologies for VR/ AR where small bootstrapped agencies can create experiences for small local businesses. Right now, VR/ AR is a trending subject but not necessarily as easily adopted into a company’s marketing plan.

— Kenny Nguyen, CEO at Three Sixty Eight

With the increase in tracking, analytics, and client acquisition attribution there is much more accountability around what is working and what is not with marketing and sales endeavors. This accountability is slowly bringing these two departments( marketing and sales) closer together. Entailing there is going to be a motion of “lead generation” agencies that will move closer into the CRM implementation/ usage space; basically they will move into Marketings Enablement.

The real value for sale and marketing managers/ VPs is going to be in lessening lead response times, understanding sales qualified lead attribution, and knowing days to close reporting metrics. Bureau that are not helping contribute or provide increased insight will quickly be passed over for the firms that are providing this value.

The biggest area of interruption is tied closest to new revenue and new client onboarding. Since the way people buy has changed so much with the increased accessibility of information, buyers’ expectations and knowledge have grown significantly.

If companies do not heavily focus on aligning buy expectations( i.e. what was promised or committed to the buyer by the sales person) with the customer success squad, then the chance of a new client having buyer’s remorse and churning is very high.

Best way to make this alignment tangible is through helping the sales team accurately document and distribute information to the customer success squad. Expending in 1) processes and structure around documented systems and 2) tools to automate these manual procedures will help make it scalable.

— Josh Harcus, Director of Channel at PandaDoc

Read more: blog.hubspot.com

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