What’s crazy cool about the advertising business is that small boutique operations run by creative minds can compete with big corporate behemoths of advertising like Dentsu, Ogilvy, Havas, BBDO. It’s all about creativity and a bit of business acumen.
The creativity we can’t help with, that was up to God and your parents, but we can surely contribute to your success as a businessperson. Here’s how you can use CRM for an advertising agency: best practices, practicable insights, top features, and more.
Software technology used by the advertising industry
First things first, a tech stack for different roles in an advertising agency will differ. A Creative Director, strategist, account manager, illustrator, copywriter, traffic manager, media buyer all have jobs as dissimilar, as a rocket scientist and a mathematician. They have a role-specific skillset and duties, and technology that enables it.
A person responsible for visual content will be the guru of Photoshop and other image editing software like Figma, Crello, etc.
A copywriter will be using a plagiarism checker, Grammarly spell-checker, and other text editing software solutions.
A traffic manager will work with Google Ads, Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, Ecommerce website CRM, Facebook business manager, etc.
A media buyer will be dealing with tools and systems like SemRush, Ahrefs, Alexa, PRnews, Google Keyword Planner, Buffer, and the like.
You get the logic.
On a company-level basis, it’s usually task management systems, messengers, and project management tools that are shared between the entire team, on top of regular office tools by Microsoft.
But all of the functionality of a task manager, messenger, and project manager can be combined under one umbrella tool, called the Client Relationship Management tool.
Let’s go through the key features of such software solutions:
Key features of CRM for the creative industry and ad agencies
As is obvious from the name of this ubiquitous tool, it was initially conceived as an alternative to long excel files with client contact data.
But the CRMs of today have grown to combine pretty much every feature crucial for business daily operations. Let’s review the main modules of Nimble for illustration purposes.
Client contact database management
There are so many people we sustain a relationship with when at work. The mere quantity of contacts or an employee of an advertising agency is overflowing.
Whatever position you are in, the longer your contact list, the easier your job is. Say, you have 100 graphic designers in your CRM, or 3 decide how much time you will spend searching for the talent to execute your next ad hoc and urgent contract.
Sending a contest to 100 designers takes just as much time as it takes to send a letter to 2 designers. But the chances to get a satisfactory response is multifold.
The client list is segmented by default parameters like role, company, location, but can also be filtered by custom tags, like “Lions Cannes 2020”, “Creative Directors Club”, “Google Ads Partner” etc.
Nimble users can perform multiple actions from a client’s profile, like: send an email, invite for a meeting, check out one of the 40 fields on corporate and personal info, read notes, team’s correspondents, check out the social activity, add to a task, and more.
Calendar and meeting planning
A well-planned day is a well-spent day, let’s agree.
Those having a habit to plan their daily routine at the end of the previous day start their day with a session of deep work that sets a rhythm to an entire day. Having your day filled with tasks, meetings and events make it so much more productive, predictable, and less stressful.
You can also send invites to your team members and colleagues from this feature. The best thing is that the Nimble calendar is compatible with all major calendar solutions.
Task and deal management
The task management module helps create, assign, and monitor tasks among team members. Users can also assign tasks to deals and move along the chosen pipeline.
Keeping an eye on your pipeline is important for the current status quo of any advertising agency financials, but even more so, it’s vital to its future performance.
There is a standard set of pipeline stages offered to users as a default solution, but businesses may also choose to create a new custom stage or design a customized pipeline that fits their needs.
Email marketing for digital promotion companies
Email marketing module allows for so much more than traditional inboxes. Users can always check previous activity across social media as well as email activity, see the client’s extensive profile, make a note, schedule a meeting, etc.
There is a possibility to send a group email to up to 300 contacts a day depending on your pricing plan. Such mass emails will have statistics of open rate and read reports to them for better decision making.
Reports and analytics
Having an understanding of the efficiency of your sales team gets more crucial the higher your average check and LTV gets.
It’s not rare for an advertising business to have an average check calculated in tens of thousands of dollars. The more significant it is to know how good your sales reps are. Reports and analytics feature allows you to monitor the main criteria and ensure you only work with the highest achievers at the end of the day.
Business intelligence via the Nimble Prospector browser extension
Talking to the right person is an investment with potentially sky-high ROI.
Talking to the wrong person is definitely a waste of time with negative ROI.
Sometimes sales teams spend hours getting through the gatekeepers, while a 2-minute chat with decision-makers can bring hundreds of thousands in revenues.
This is why Nimble created a browser extension for prospecting and business intelligence called Nimble Prospector.
It scrapes off data available on the internet about the person and automatically fills out up to 40 fields, including contact details and company data.
CRM for advertising agencies: practicable insights
Get your team to share gems of creativity and inspiring works
Success in the advertising business boils down to a few factors, like:
- Creativity and talent to think outside the box
- Significant exposure to enough creative works by others
- Understanding of the trends, market, audience, product
- Limitations and privileges that come with a portfolio of agency’s works
The second point is experience based on how much of other people’s creations you have seen. It’s one of the drivers of the creative market as such, when people get a well-rounded perception of things and rich enough background, that they can create outside of it.
But people can only see as many things in their day, week, lifetime.
Not all best works go viral or get awards.
This is why we recommend creating a shared file where people will share links to works to recommend each other to check out.
For the practice to yield the best fruit, we advise that people take time to fill in such a sheet with respective comment sections and maybe industry of the commercial and the distribution channel specified. To ensure everyone takes time to review the file and check out recommended commercials, it’s the best practice to get everyone to a quick meeting once a month to discuss why the chosen works ended up being recommended.
Network and then network more: advertising industry technology helps
Networking is the fundament of fundamentals in the advertising industry, as word of mouth is the only hard currency with this commercials-skeptical bunch, who creates ads.
This is why top management and the creative core of the company need to mix everywhere hot and trendy: online, offline, and in-between. Reddit popular thread, Twitter hashtag, or wine-tasting in the top club.
If you own an advertising agency, having several hangouts and social events attendants as a measurable task for your creative team is a must-adopt routine. Use the Nimble task manager to assign such tasks, so that you can track them, enlarge your client database, and monitor deals that they give rise to eventually.
Have a team-building watching Cannes Lions and other awards
The advertising industry is extremely competitive and as an agency owner, you should keep it that way. Talent is an ephemeral matter that’s hard to quantify, so you need your team in top shape, ready to fight for awards all the time.
If you are a monstrosity in your own market or just a budding small creative business, have a few events per year that nurture that competitiveness.
Not only is it a must to include this annual happening into your onboarding materials that you share with every newcomer in the onboarding pipeline for the team, the best results if this event is not a one-night happening, but an anticipated event. Have images from this event hanging on the walls. Have teams prepare for the event and get them fighting for your company’s annual awards held during the Cannes Lions period.
Hunt for clients with Nimble Prospector
Client hunting is an exciting but tiring activity. Researching clients is no longer the breeze it used to be. Companies don’t compile their emails any more like they used to do: [email protected].
Prospector extension makes your contact research so much more enjoyable. Users can add contacts from anywhere on a computer desktop, but highlighting a name on Linked In or Twitter, hovering over an email, or 3rd party app’s profiles.
Nimble Prospector can add up to 40 fields to contact so that you have exhaustive data to drive your decision making and prospecting.
Use technology to advance your advertising business, as competitors have been
Using a CRM is a norm for pretty much any business nowadays, the advertising industry is no exception.
No matter how small your agency is, there’s a CRM for any size. Nimble CRM is recognized as one of the best CRMs for small and medium businesses by Capterra and G2Crowd. Just check out 1500+ reviews on Capterra and see why it is.
With the price of a box of doughnuts, every business can afford a CRM. But no business can afford to operate without such a fundamental tool
Try Nimble today for free for 14 days with just your email address to start with.