The Client/Agency Discovery Process: What You Need to Know

June 15, 2018 /

Inbound Marketing

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Our team at flux+flow does a lot of things differently — that’s why our approach translates into such fantastic results — but if we had to pick one thing that sets us apart from other marketing agencies it would be our customized, comprehensive methodology that helps our clients jump-start their growth marketing strategies with remarkable speed. How do we do it? Well, knowledge is power, and we fuel our engines with the details we gather through our extensive discovery process.


What Is Discovery?

Think of discovery as a fact-finding mission.

For starters, we want to learn about your company’s needs. Those needs serve as our operational bullseye, so we know where to aim as we build the rest of our intel. We’ll also look at your business from your clients’ viewpoints. What are their needs, challenges and desired results? That information is then turned into an insightful, goal-oriented growth marketing plan.

A few sample deliverables from discovery include:

  • Buyer Personas: These mock-ups represent key details about your ideal customer, including their motivations, goals, common pain points, demographic information and behavioral patterns.
  • Keyword Research: If you want to rank, you need to know which keywords will resonate with your audience and bring in traffic.
  • Competitive Analysis: Learn from your competitors’ digital strengths and weaknesses and improve your own processes as a result.

In short, discovery is our way to uncover what you really want from your marketing efforts so you aren’t wasting your money on data that doesn’t matter and campaigns that don’t convert.

Why Is Discovery Important?

You can’t foster a connection with someone you don’t understand. We use discovery to help build a strong relationship between our agency and the client and, eventually, between the client and the end consumer. Along the way, we learn more about:

  • Pain Points: Do you need more leads? More content to help your sales and marketing team? Have you been feeling like your sales department and marketing gurus are out of sync?
  • Challenges: The sooner we’re aware of small budgets, technological hurdles or time-sensitive goals, the easier it is to account for them in our final marketing plan.
  • Limitations: Are you lacking in internal bandwidth or restricted by in-house resources?
  • Opportunities: Gain leverage when you acquire insight into what your competitors are doing in terms of digital marketing.
  • Digital Marketing Insights: How should you budget for your marketing efforts and where should you spend that money?

At flux+flow, we pride ourselves on ditching traditional agency operations and embracing our growth marketing team. Our tactics are anything but one-size-fits-all, and personalization is paramount. We take the time to learn about your organization from the inside out because when you’re successful, we’re successful.

What Is the Discovery Process?

Step 1: SEO Audit

Before we can dive into fixing whatever might be sabotaging your ranking, we have to figure out exactly what those issues are. During the SEO audit, we’ll scrutinize your entire site, digging into the technical SEO, conducting keyword research, evaluating site speed and performance and cataloging our findings. Once that report is ready, we’ll make some recommendations as to how we can improve your SEO efforts, making your site more search engine friendly and increasing its visibility.

Step 2: Content Audit

Only 72 percent of marketers say they have a content strategy up and running, and a mere 30 percent of those marketers have documented that strategy. How strong can your plan truly be if you don’t have it written out in detail for your entire team to see? Do you really know what’s already in your content library and what’s about to be published? Is your content cohesive or is there cross-channel confusion? We’ll assess any existing strategy with our content marketing audit, see how you’re currently creating content, construct new buyer personas and propose new technology to help you streamline everything from ideation to publication.

Step 3: PPC Audit

Pay-per-click campaigns are a smart way to invest in your marketing game plan but only if you know what you’re doing. Otherwise, you risk bleeding money and waiting for a return that never happens. Our PPC audit looks at keywords, analyzes various platforms, examines the tech you’re utilizing for landing pages and emails and eliminates troublesome message-match confusion that can negatively influence a consumer’s buying behavior.

Step 4: Competitive Analysis

You can learn a lot from your competitors, and that education starts here. We gather information on your competitors’ digital strengths and weaknesses and use those insights to identify opportunities and address challenges within your own organization. It’s a chance to capitalize off the missteps and achievements of others without the cost and time typically associated with that learning curve.

Step 5: Marketing Technology

Martech is a double-edged sword. The right apps and utilities can help you streamline your operation and improve your relationship with consumers, but it’s also easy to get bogged down in the “latest and greatest” releases whether or not they’re truly what you need. Our marketing technology audit delves into marketing automation and other productivity-boosting processes. We’ll take a look at the tech you already have in place and recommend new options worthy of your time and money.

Step 6: Stakeholder Interview

This is where we get to know you, our client. Because the flux+flow approach is tailored to fit each business we work with, this is quite possibly the most crucial step in the entire discovery process.

During the interview, we’ll:

  • Talk about your business goals and how we can align them with your marketing strategy
  • Discuss your preferences and log any marketing-related likes or dislikes
  • Provide a fresh perspective that gets you to think differently and consider an array of compelling new ideas

FAQ

  1. How long does discovery take?

Discovery typically takes around two weeks, but that timetable is dependent on outside variables, such as how quickly we get information from the client. 

  1. What happens if we skip discovery?

Without discovery, you’ll face a longer initial engagement, more revisions and an overall less efficient process. You’ll ramp up slower, and it’ll take more time to achieve your goals — two things that are bound to delay or even derail long-term success.

  1. Why should we pay for discovery?

For the same reason you make any investments in your business: it’ll pay off. We’ve found that clients who choose discovery save more money and see better results from marketing campaigns compared to competitors who skip the discovery process altogether.

  1. What do we do with this information?

The information gathered during discovery can be used to establish marketing metrics and benchmarks and to define your brand’s goals and priorities.

  1. What’s my time commitment?

For this discovery package, you’ll need to commit to a stakeholder interview at the beginning of discovery and a review after completion.

  1. How do we get started?

It’s easy! Simply schedule a discovery session with the flux+flow team to see if you’re a good fit.

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