After a long and arduous process of finding the most ideal SEO agency to work with you company, there is still work to be done to optimize your online marketing campaign. Our work has been underway in getting your company going to restore or maximize your business. There is still work to be done on your part to maintain a profitable website.
Relationships between agency and client are most profitable when there is a team mentality. A client recently made the suggestion that perhaps someone at our company “reverse roles” in figuring out how to pick the right SEO “team members” or clients for a company.
At SEO companies we don’t have the luxury of choosing the clients we want. But the suggestion did make me think: What would be the perfect description of our ideal clientele, if we could pick?
After careful consideration, the most important characteristic about an SEO client that would be an amazing fit for our “team” would be a company that is eager to build a long-lasting and profitable relationship. Working collaboratively, versus “just take our word for everything and listen to us” is much more preferable.
Successful results are our number one objective, after all, that’s what you have hired us to achieve. To get those results, developing a “team foundation” between agency and client can accelerate progress.
Relationships are Tricky
There’s no way around it: relationships take effort.
Developing a productive client and agency relationship, especially from different backgrounds, can be time-consuming yet so worth the effort. Personalities take time to click and for everyone’s true colors to come out so that you determine how to work cohesively and productively together.
Working cooperatively together to ensure the relationship is balanced versus one-sided, is so important. Cooperation can avoid failure in the relationship, or worse, the business. It’s that simple.
Real success is attained when each party on the team contributes to the relationship. Once this is realized, each team member can be guided toward their best roles in the campaign. That’s when you will experience improved changes taking place.
Main Goals of a Successful Client-Agency Partnership
The goal of each part in the Client-Agency partnership is to reach beyond your digital marketing goals, develop an understanding of each other, work more efficiently, and gain trust for one another in each party.
Our goal as your SEO agency, is develop and improve your social media presence, use our expertise to increase your rankings, and make your website structure more efficient.
Your goal as our SEO client, is to participate in very specific parts of this campaign to to keep things running smoothly. We will help with the rest.
Often, clients simply do not want to believe that they have a vital role in the success of this relationship.
“I’m paying you right? Isn’t that my part?”
This is a typical response from clients. We can bet that is what a lot of you were thinking after reading about your role.
Actually, there is more to just “paying” for what you bring to this partnership.
Attitude is everything in client-agency relationships. If you are only looking at this partnership as only one large transaction between provider and customer, the chances of success will be slim. And if that’s the case, let’s just say it’s not the kind of relationship that lasts very long. Success is driven by both parties bringing assets to the proverbial table to reach the final goal together.
The Best Client-Agency Relationship Success Principles
Let us be absolutely clear about the expectations about what it takes to be the best client for our agency. We are not saying this for our benefit. We are also not implying that clients have an obligation to us to act in a certain way or by a “criteria”.
The best clients know that when they bring something else to this two-sided equation, there is a much better chance to see positive results. Again, both client and agency bringing their best to reach goals.
Here are the best 6 things you can do to build a better relationship with your SEO agency.
1. Be open and transparent
Understanding your business and expectations in detail is our priority. This is why it will be most effective for your situation to be upfront and honest with us so that we can best determine which strategies will be the most effective for your company.
You should also expect the same from us. We want to be as clear and open about the strategies we are putting into motion. In this way, you know what is going on at all times during the campaign.
2. Remember, we are on the same team
SEO is not just about rankings. It is about targeting the audience that is ready to make a purchase. It is about conversion rates. It is about incorporating social media. SEO is ALSO about ranking – but maybe not in the way you think.
We both have the same goal: The continued success and growth of your company.
We have found that clients who insist their success must come from the rankings of one or two very specific keywords is one of the most common mistakes and causes of the breakdown in communication. The client does not seem to want to hear that the SEO company will continuously strive for increased conversion rate and traffic growth as being of the most importance.
Clients mistakenly enter into the relationship with the expectation that they will start showing up on top pages of Google in specific time frames with specific terms. They have paid for those results and want those specific goals met.
The problem in the above situation is in the transaction mindset we mentioned earlier. They are acting more like a customer instead of as a partner.
The more lucrative relationships happen when clients create a real partnership with the agency.
Initially, we may have different points-of-view on how to achieve the best results. However, when working together as team, listening to each other’s advice and concerns from each side, we will start to see sustainable and realistic results.
3. Communicate honestly about your goals
The term “Communicate” in this case does not mean telling your SEO company that you won’t be happy until Trophy Keyword 1 and Trophy Keyword 2 rank in the number one spot on Google.
Communication is a two-way street. Absolutely explain to your SEO team your goals and expectations. In addition, listening to the things they have to say will be much more lucrative for your goals and relationship. Together, you may be able to set other goals that will have a much more direct impact on reaching your ROI faster.
4. Consistent Communication is key in the relationship
We totally understand how busy you are in the day-to-day tasks of running your business. However, setting up consistent time to connect with us on your business is important so that we do not go through a long stretch of not hearing from you about your business. If we are not regularly able to review reports given to us from you, and then come back and say: “What have you been doing with my money and why am I not ranking #1 for Trophy Keyword 1?” then we will have a major problem to overcome.
Another important aspect of consistent communication is the importance of responding to any communication from your agency in a timely fashion. Otherwise, the consequences might be missing a very important opportunity or slowing down a lot of your potential progress.
5. But do not bother your SEO team with every little thing
We love working with you and hope you understand that your SEO agency is also very busy. Good agencies will persevere in making sure all your needs and goals are always met, but you do need to understand one thing for that to happen:
You hired them to get a job done. Expecting to be kept in the loop is obvious, but, you need to let them do the job you hired them to do.
Keep the time your team speaks with you on the phone brief and to the point. The time spent on the phone with you is time they could be working to improve your rankings.
We have worked diligently to develop the best strategies to achieve your goals. Reports are sent out weekly which have all the important information relevant to your campaign. Make sure to review them regularly to keep up to date on your SEO agency’s progress.
Now, in order to do our job, it’s important that you give us the freedom to do so while keeping communication effective.
Lastly, trust builds the best relationships and you are going to have to trust that your agency will do their job.
6. Your agency members are your team members; not the product of a transaction
True team mentality means including your SEO agency in the decision-making process of anything that involves your social media, involves your website, or other marketing endeavors.
We need to be treated as if we are in the same building with you, even if that may not be the case. As team members, we can not be treated like strangers or outsiders if you want your online marketing and SEO rankings to succeed.
Taking our recommendations, just like you would any other member of your business team, is highly encouraged because we are all achieving the same goal together. You have certain people on your team because they bring unique skill sets to the table to help you grow your business.
It is so important to use this same approach in how you interact with your SEO team. You chose us because of our experience and skill set in this industry. You can count on us to do our part for the benefit of your business.