In 2022, the agencies are in an awkward but favorable position.
Hardly, because the brands they work for have a global group of agencies to choose from. Convenient, because the same brands need digital communication more than ever. With a saturated and globalized market, brands that employ marketing, PR, design and development agencies (to name a few) cannot lead, entertain, educate and win consumers on their own. Brands simply need the expertise of an agency.
But how do agencies deal with fierce competition? As with most problems today, using technology is the answer. Agencies need to be able to deliver business in a way that will increase their efficiency and margins and more. This requires a healthy approach.
As project management platforms emerge left and right, agencies need to ask themselves what key functionalities they need. Keep reading about the top features that agencies look for in a business management tool to increase their overall efficiency and grow.
What a built-in sales funnel can tell your agency
The agency’s sales or business development team communicates with several teams. In order to organize their sales efforts, agencies need a sales funnel that provides an overview of new jobs in preparation, the scope and time frame of upcoming projects and, of course, the financial part of it all – sales forecasting.
By keeping sales information organized through a sales funnel built into the agency management tool, business development representatives can easily inform operations, project, and resource managers in planning business for their teams, HR for potential employment planning, and management on overall metrics.
With an easily available sales funnel and related forecast reports, stakeholders can quickly see potential customers and new business progressing through the stages. Keeping sales data in one place can help answer strategic and tactical questions. What is the probability that this six-month project will start next month and where should we invest as a company in order to successfully implement it? How will this same project affect our profitability if we decide to hire freelancers and what internal resources will we hire? At the same time, the agency’s sales team may be negotiating with other potential clients who will also need attention soon.
Agencies can answer these questions (and many more) through a sales flow that is part of a larger agency platform that includes reporting, resource allocation, project management, and time tracking.
Resource planning, time tracking, budget spending and invoicing — all connected?
It’s time for money and agencies need to constantly monitor and update schedules, track budgets and speed up invoicing. As these types of companies mainly deliver project work through time frames and tasks, they have to ask themselves how to connect these projects and tasks with reporting and billing through monitored time, budget spending … and what about invoicing? In addition to tracking service time, you need to track all costs in the same agency management tool (including utilities, contractors, out-of-pocket costs, etc.).
According to a global agency landscape research conducted in late 2021. of the 169 agencies that participated in the benchmarking survey, 50% have less than three months of visibility in their revenue forecast. This is closely related to resource planning and successful balancing of project work for teams. The same study showed that 51% of agencies see investing in operational efficiency as one of their top priorities this year.
“We learned that less than 50% of agencies use an integrated platform that shows them their financial indicators in real time. It’s a sign that there is room for growth in using the right technology. “
– Gabrijela Bosnjak, Senior BDR at Productive
The figures clearly show that agencies are increasingly targeting one source of truth for running their data-based business.
real-time metrics as your agency’s basis for data-based decisions
After all, what is very important for any agency at the top is making business decisions based on data at all levels.
In order for the metrics to be as accurate as possible in real time, what is crucial is to get all teammates to monitor the time regularly. But in addition to CEOs, CFOs, operational and accounting managers who need to know the real state of the agency’s finances at all times, agency leaders increasingly need to research data that points to the well-being of their teams.
“With Productive we can now look much further ahead. We used to plan projects about two weeks in advance. We are now accepting bookings for projects starting in 4-6 weeks.”
– Martijn Pillich, CEO of Hike One
When agencies dig deep enough, there is data that can show how balanced the work of their teams is, how diverse their tasks are, how often they take free time to relax, and how employees progress professionally amidst the agency’s entire security. growth.
One agency tool as your only source of truth
Spending time at presentations, compiling reports, looking back on the profit and loss report from the last quarter, or asking the finance team for the latest figures is a practice from the past. Agency leaders today empower employees by giving different team members access to agency data, enabling them to positively impact the course of their business growth.
Running an agency in one consolidated workspace – from submitting proposals to managing tasks, balancing resource planning, to invoicing every delivered project – is what leaders are looking for today as their northern star. The future of agency management requires one source of truth.
Learn more about how Productive can help your agency consolidate its business data and thrive.