In the world that thrives on digital growth, kickstarting your own business in that realm means that you’re both in for plenty of healthy competition, but also lots of potential success if you choose the right approach. Now that e-commerce is the predominant way of shopping, online counseling and teaching still on the rise, and the social media hype still in the fast lane of growth, there is so much you can achieve amidst all the development, but your spot in the kingdom is still not guaranteed.

Before you settle for a business plan and start investing your time, effort and money into developing your idea, let’s take a look at a few essentials that will help you make the right decisions on your journey towards creating your digital marketing agency.

Goal-setting 101

The idea that you “want to start an agency” is not enough to drive your long-term success, hence the need to define your goals more precisely, in a measurable way, and to keep how to start a digital agencytrack of your milestones and setbacks in order to ensure a smoother ride in the future. The best way to think of your goals is to make them SMART – specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound, all of which are meant to help you pinpoint your priorities without sticking to vague aspirations.

Go for statements such as “I wish to aim for $120,000 of revenue in the first year of business”, which gives you an estimate of how many clients per your desired pricing you need, which niches you should target for, all the way down to how many hours per day you need to invest in client-hunting, pitching and how many deals per month you need to close to meet this goal. You’ll have different tools to keep track of your ongoing success, to learn where you need to make adjustments and improve your growth accordingly.

Find the right marketing niche

Just like one pair of shoes cannot fit all of us, you cannot possibly expect the entire world to find your brand appealing. And as tempting as it is to yield to this urge to focus on everybody, you’ll risk losing the clients that matter and those you would be able to build a strong relationship, because they are looking for something specific. You want them to look for you.

Do you want to work in the health and fitness industry? Focus on fair-trade? Or you’d rather go for major fashion brands? It’s best to start narrowing down your client selection in the earliest stages of your business setup, to have enough time to learn more about the niche, and how your competitors succeed in attracting this particular clientele – and what you can do to make yourself stand out and be different.

Prep your funding

The birth of Nike can be tracked to Philip Knight’s efforts to peddle the shoe out of the back of his own car, but he had the vision and the tenacity that led to what we now know as one of the most famous athletic brands that has ever been created. So, you may not be a billionaire to begin with, but that doesn’t mean that you cannot find the means and the drive to take your company all the way to the top.

Of course, when it comes to digital marketing, you do need funding to create the website, start your SEO strategy, and keep your company alive. And luckily for you, the world is brimming with those who want to support startups and see potential in investing in their future growth. You can consider applying for new business loans, which are simple and straightforward, or you can look for investors, try crowdfunding or find support from your friends and family.  

Create your brand

Not a single product or service in this world is just that – look at Apple’s staggering technological success, and Coca Cola’s everlasting appeal to your emotion. The most powerful brands are those who not only make, but deliver on their promise, and match their products and services to the people who share their values and relate to their brand identity.

Your own success will heavily depend on how well you build your brand identity, and how you present it both online and offline. Don’t be just another digital marketing agency, find your edge, find that one thing that gives you the advantage and makes you unique enough to stand out. Don’t rush into creating the right content or the right visuals – take your time, because this will be your calling for the foreseeable future.

Ready to launch?

Now that you have your brand, financial security for the time being, and your goals, it’s time to turn that dream of yours into a reality. Do your homework to find out what rules and regulations apply in your country, what documentation you need to register your business, and of course, if you need an accountant to handle your book-keeping, or if you can manage until clients start pouring in.

As soon as you launch your company, you’ll need to have various reporting and tracking tools that will help you keep an eye on your growth rate (remember making those goals measurable?), while you keep your mindset and your game-plan flexible in order to make changes as your business grows.