This past year we made some significant changes to our service.
Our client list has literally erupted like a volcano 🌋—with clients who are mostly agencies like you by the way.
In 2021, none of us know what’s going to happen—the aliens may come to Earth
👽👽, an asteroid may smash into our computer screen ☄️, or zombies can come back to life and take over the world 🧟♂️🧟♂️.
Who knows… 🤷♂️
But what I guarantee you is that despite all the chaos that 2021 may or may not bring, you can keep growing your client list, your leads, and your bank account.
It’s exactly what I did in 2020. And to be honest, it was our best year so far.
Now, as an agency owner yourself, you may think you’ve heard it all—all the tricks, hacks, steps, formulas, and secret codes to scale your agency with just that—pure magic and secrets 🔮.
But here’s the thing… You need a lot more than magic to scale your agency…
That’s why in this article, I’m going to tell you:
- Why to ditch the secrets and magic for real data-driven research, trends, and statistics to start growing your agency 📈.
- Mind-blowing facts, stats, and trends that you must NOT ignore because if you snooze, you lose 😴.
- And how you can use all that research to your agency’s advantage to remain competitive 💰.
I’ve curated this data exclusively for agencies who are looking to thrive in 2021. Ready to start seeing how magic and tricks are not the only way to scale?…
How Exactly Can Research, Statistics, & Trends Help My Agency Grow?
We live in a world where modern technology is constantly changing and evolving.
And because of it, consumer interests and behaviors are hard to predict.
Agency owners like you want to sign up more clients. Want to handle more and more clients’ accounts. And want to outsource when you can’t manage everything by yourself.
And all that comes down to really understanding your target audience.
You see, in order for you to ask for the sale, you need to first know who you’re selling to.
You need to know what they need so you can sell them the right product.
Still making sense, right?
Customers and clients want great buying experiences and positive customer services that fulfill their needs and expectations.
Because honestly, who doesn’t?
But most of the time, business owners simply don’t know how to meet consumers or clients’ needs.
They don’t know the sales funnel strategies to keep customers flowing in. And as a result, they look for answers in the wrong places (i.e. so-called marketing gurus and crystal balls 🔮).
But the right answers can be easier to find that you think.
And that’s why I told you above that…
You Don’t Need Magic to Scale Your Business—You Need Data-Backed Research
That “magic” is often in numbers, in data, in research, in surveys.
It only takes knowing that according to X survey, “% of people who see a black CTA button on a landing page are more likely to click on it” to understand that you should make your CTAs black to get more people to click.
Not that that’s really the case because actually CTA buttons should NOT be black but bright (those are obvious conversion tactics for your landing pages that you should know).
But that’s a conversation for another day…
The point is, you wouldn’t know what color to use for your CTA buttons if it wasn’t for the data and research that said which is the highest converting color.
So research, statistics, surveys, and trends help you gather the necessary data you need in order to better understand your audience and make better decisions for your company.
Let me put it this way.
You’re no longer wearing those stonewashed or ripped jeans, combat boots, Birkenstocks, and high top sneakers from the 80’s and 90’s, are you?
You don’t because they’re no longer the trend. And because research says that people who actually dress like that are less likely to be accepted by society, you actually don’t dress that way.
See what I’m doing there?
The only reason why you’d be wearing those 80’s and 90’s outfits would be if they were trendy right now (which they kind of are right now but I don’t get fashion).
The same thing happens with your agency.
You need to proudly offer to clients whatever is selling out there. Whatever is the trend. Whatever your audience is claiming they want.
And you won’t know that with magic.
Those trends you need to consider are nothing more than a certain marketing strategy or approach that has been proven to work for determined businesses.
And that’s the only way you’ll guarantee you’ll actually establish yourself as an authority with prospects to make the sale.
Another example of this is, years ago, artificial intelligence was an ambitious concept. It seemed way too far off to be seriously considered.
It was more like science fiction than reality.
But in 2020, using AI to businesses’ advantage is among business owners’ top priorities simply to remain competitive.
Now what I’m trying to say is, in order for your business to thrive, you need to keep up with the trends because if you snooze, you know what happens. You lose.
So now that the top marketing trends for thriving in 2020 is in the past, without any further ado, let’s see what are the top statistics, facts, and trends that your agency should consider for 2021.
In turn, you’ll stay at the very top of the game!
Agency Statistics, Facts, & Trends to Consider for 2021:
There are trends for basically anything.
For technology, health, and fitness. For artificial intelligence, social media, and fashion.
There are also holiday shopping trends and statistics to help you spot the importance of online shopping and help you adjust your sales and marketing strategies to it.
And in order to grow your agency, you’ve got to be on top of these trends and statistics.
These are the statistics, facts, and trends that you should consider this year.
Agency Revenue Forecast per Industry in the U.S.
If you’re an agency owner or work for one, the agency industry is expected to be on the rise for years to come.
Here are some revenue predictions per industry…
Industry revenue of advertising agencies in the U.S. will surpass the $53b mark by 2024
The revenue of advertising agencies in the U.S. for 2024 is projected to be approximately $53.5 billion. (Statista)
Industry revenue of travel agencies in the U.S. by 2024 will be almost $23b
The revenue of the travel agencies industry in the U.S. for 2024 is projected to amount approximately $22.9 billion. (Statista)
Industry revenue of insurance agencies and brokerages in the U.S. by 2024 will exceed $157b
The revenue of the insurance agencies and brokerages in the U.S. by 2024 is projected to amount to approximately $157.2 billion. (Statista)
Industry revenue of media buying agencies in the U.S. will surpass the $7m mark by 2024
The revenue of the media buying agencies in the U.S. by 2024 is projected to amount to approximately $7.16 billion. (Statista)
Agencies Post COVID-19
Even though COVID-19 hit most businesses really hard, there were some that were able to actually thrive.
Here’s some data that proves it…
Digital agencies recommended email marketing as the main marketing channel during COVID-19
A survey of 130 digital agencies worldwide shows that 15% recommended their clients email marketing as the most effective marketing channel during the pandemic.
This was followed by web design and development, blog content, and paid social, each recommended by 13% of digital agency professionals (Statista).
There has been an increase in project work during COVID-19
As Chris Ronzio from Trainual told me once, where there’s chaos, there’s opportunity.
And proof of that is that, according to Sprout Social, 28% of agencies have actually seen an increase in project work during the pandemic.
So in case you’re wondering how to market your brand during the coronavirus, taking on more project work is the way to go.
Social media is key in age ncies’ package offers
Over ⅓ of all agencies surveyed by Sprout Social said social is more integral to their client packages now than before the Corona Age.
And only 4% stated that social is an afterthought.
A minority of agencies had to discount prices during COVID-19
29% of agencies had to discount their pricing due to the pandemic. But 37% of agencies actually said that they didn’t modify their pricing at all. (Sprout Social)
Rural markets were more “immune” to the pandemic compared to urban locations
48% of agencies operating in rural markets say they haven’t modified their pricing process while 31% of agencies in urban locations didn’t either.
And ⅓ of agencies in an urban location say the pandemic forced them to offer discounted pricing compared to 18% of rural agencies. (Sprout Social)
Conversion Rate for Agencies
There are plenty of conversion rate case studies for eCommerce and for any business in general.
Let’s just take a look at what agencies are doing to improve their average website conversion rate.
The most common choice for hero images on agencies’ landing pages are people
According to Digital Third Coast, the most common choices for hero images that agencies use are:
- Portfolio work
“Think like people” is the most common tagline—Say what?
The most used taglines in agencies websites are:
- “Think like people”
- “Time to say what we mean and show results”
- “Marketing is everywhere”
Huh… can you come up with better headlines?
Remember to always follow the Law of Clarity—one of my favorite Laws of Sales Funnel Physics.
This law says that before people become interested and decide to buy your product, they must first understand what it is.
So better to be clear than clever.
Social media keeps being on the rise.
And there are plenty of social media campaigns that you can apply for your agency.
But here are some stats, facts, and trends for your agency to consider regarding social media…
Social media management is the top social media service offered by agencies
The top social media services offered by agencies are social media management by 98%. That’s followed by social media strategy by 95%, content development by 94%, and social media analytics with 94%. (Sprout Social)
Types of social media vary depending on the agency
Nor very surprising. But according to Sprout Social, the types of social media services offered vary depending on the agency type.
For example, when it comes to social analytics, only 86% of PR agencies offered this service compared to 95% of all agency respondents.
For paid social agencies it was 93%. On top of that, community management plays a prominent role in just 80% of agencies’ service offerings.
Top service offered in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region is social media management
For agencies in the Europe, Middle East, and Africa region, the top 3 services they offer are social media management (98%), social media strategy (93%), and social media analytics (91%) according to Sprout Social.
Social media is key to Agencies’ package offers
According to Sprout Social, 70% of agencies say social is integral to their packages.
More than half of agencies struggle to educate their clients on the value of social media
54% of agencies actually struggle to educate their clients on the huge value and power of social media. This is because some clients don’t see the return on their investment in social, and in turn, they refuse to invest in it. (Sprout Social)
Agencies offer design and creative services second
80% of agencies surveyed said they provide creative and design services. 75% said they offer content marketing and 71% said email marketing. (Sprout Social)
Biggest Pain Points Agencies Struggle With
There are big pain points and common mistakes that digital marketing agencies make.
Not to mention the main challenges growing agencies like you face,
Being an agency owner nowadays is tough. Especially if you don’t have the right tools in your digital marketing agency tool box.
But certainly, you’re not the only agency facing challenges.
Let’s see what other agencies are dealing with so you can find some solutions there…
Agencies’ biggest struggles are measuring and showing ROI
55% of agencies say their biggest challenges are measuring and showing ROI.
And the rest of the pain points they struggle with are growing their business, scope creep, lack of time or bandwidth, client churn, and working with clients who have shrinking budgets. (Sprout Social)
That’s why we’ve made it so easy for agencies like you.
We do all the work for you so you don’t have to worry about any of the pain points above.
And best of all?
You get to sit back without having to monitor every single detail of the process because we do it all for you. AND you get 100% credit for the work you do for your clients.
Agencies struggle with their clients’ budgets
63% of agencies surveyed said client budget is their biggest pain point when it comes to pricing followed by educating clients on the value of social media (54%) and client expectations ( 51%).
Creative Agencies also struggle with their clients’ budget
81% of creative agencies struggle to price their services because of their clients’ budgets and 75% struggle due to expectations. (Sprout Social)
Pricing, Margins, & Contracts
Do you prefer your service be based in long-term contracts or do you prefer them be month-to-month?
No long-term contracts.
Well, actually, there are no contracts at all.
Now let’s see how agencies out there are charging their clients…
The majority of agencies offer their service on retainer
88% of agencies say they offer their services on retainer while 67% work on a project-basis and 42% on a campaign basis. (Sprout Social)
Most agencies offer long-term contracts to clients
Most agencies offer 6-12 month contracts to clients followed by a 12+ month contract and a 3-6 month contract. (Sprout Social)
Half of PR agencies offer 12+ month contracts to clients
Half of PR agencies say their average contract lengths are over 12 months while social-first agencies offer month-to-month contracts. (Sprout Social)
Most agencies charge an average of $500-$999 per month
24% of agencies surveyed say they charge an average of $500-$999 per month. And 15% charge within the $1,000-$1,499 range. (Sprout Social)
The minority of agencies don’t charge hourly rates
28% of agencies say they don’t offer hourly rates. And the ones who do charge between $100-$149 per hour for their social media services. (Sprout Social)
More than half of agencies have margins between 10-30%
59% of agencies say that their pricing process includes margins between 10-30%.
And 46% of agencies that built 50% of their margins into their pricing saw an average contract length of over 12 months compared to 20% of agencies with only 10-20% of their margins built in. (Sprout Social)
Almost 50% of agencies don’t pass through the costs of technology that they use for their clients
48% of agencies surveyed say they don’t pass through the costs of technology that they use for their clients. And of those who do, actually 56% say they build those costs into their monthly rates—while 29% add technology costs as a line item. (Sprout Social)
PR agencies charge the most
PR agencies charge the most and 23% of them actually charge over $4,000 per month on average for their social services.
On top of that, they were more likely than other agencies to pass through technology costs to their clients. 59% passed costs through compared to 37% of creative agencies who do the same.
Leveraging the information you know about your users and website visitors will let you offer up personalized landing pages that present the most relevant information possible.
The visitors to your landing pages are not one and the same.
They think differently, come from different places, and want different things.
And that’s why you need to introduce personalization to your agency offerings.
Let’s see these 2021 agency stats for personalizing your offers.
Most agencies create custom packages per client
According to Sprout Social, 83% of agencies create custom packages or proposals per client.
And that makes total sense because you can actually use personalization marketing to increase conversions.
Personalization is about taking all the information and data you have for a customer and creating a great user experience—one that compels them to take a desired action.
You can even personalize each of the emails you send.
So although it may seem like a lot of work, a lot of businesses are leaning towards personalization. In fact…
Agencies are offering more service package customization
According to Sprout Social, since the start of the Corona Age, 28% of agencies are offering more service package customization compared to previous years.
In fact, 8 out of 10 agencies provide customized packages per client. And 35% of agencies offer customizable standard pricing.
On top of that, 35% of agencies now offer a la carte pricing. This lets clients choose exactly what they need depending on their budget.
For closing more sales and signing up more clients to your agency, you need to first take a look at these mind-blowing 2021 agency stats.
These agency facts, stats—however you want to call them, are key to helping you understand your prospects better and to sell better to them too.
Let’s jump into these agency stats in 2021…
The majority of agencies say growing their business is a main pain point
93% of agencies count on referrals to drive new business. And 55% of agencies say growing their business is a top pain point. (Sprout Social)
Half of agencies are full-service agencies
50% of the agencies surveyed describe themselves as full-service agencies while 25% say their agency offerings fall into digital marketing. (Sprout Social)
Hopefully after reading this article you will no longer wonder how to scale your agency in 2021.
These stats, facts, trends, and research points will help you on your way to growing your business, your client list, and your bank account.
All you have to do is pay attention to the numbers. To the surveys. To the research that tells you exactly what your audience wants and needs.
By being well-informed with data-driven research, you’ll be able to make better decisions for your business. And in turn, you’ll see more prospects signing up for your service.
But if you can’t handle your clients’ work by yourself, AutoGrow can help you.
Any digital marketing task or project you’d like us to do, we’ll do it while you take care of your business and we take care of your work.
Pretty good deal, huh?
Now tell me something.
Did any of the stats, facts, and trends I shared surprise you at all?
Did you recognize any mistakes you’re making in your own agency?
Do you now have a better understanding of what you can do to fix them?
Let me know in the comments below.
Keep AutoGrowin’, stay focused.