In the book “The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing,” they discuss the idea of creating your own category or niche, rather than trying to be better than everyone in an already established category.
To put this into context, you will find thousands of digital marketing agencies across the U.S. but not many agencies that only provide reporting and analytics services. In theory at least, it would be much easier to carve out a business that leads the way in reporting, than one that is renowned nationally for digital marketing in general.
But what exactly can you sell as an analytics and reporting business?
Well, to begin with, make sure that you are proficient in using:
— Google Analytics
— Google Tag Manager
— Google Data Studio
— Google Optimize
— Excel and Google Sheets
If you have some experience in using the above programs, you can probably learn to become “expert-level” in several weeks if you study hard and carry out several audits, installations, etc. to gain experience.
For example, this video from railsware is a great starting point for learning Data Studio. Even knowing the basics allows you to provide a service to many businesses who will not have a member on staff who specializes in reporting with Data Studio.
Create Your Business and Your Brand
Before you go contacting potential clients and touting your business, you will need your own website, logo and branding all in place.
To break this down you will need to:
— Purchase hosting and a domain
— Install your website e.g. with WordPress
— Install an SSL certificate
— Use a theme or template for your site’s design
— Customize the template
— Design a logo
— Set up your business email
— Set up and brand your social media channels
— Create and track an online lead generation form
That’s the basics. You will also need to generate some reviews and testimonials, but you may have to do some free work to get these.
Reaching Your Clients
Reaching your clients or the target audience can be the tricky part. LinkedIn can be a great place to start — try uploading presentations and videos with informative content to start with.
LinkedIn Premium may also provide some business opportunities and you can even incorporate account-based marketing by targeting specific businesses or individuals across several platforms. For example, you might want to target a local recruitment business CEO with ads on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
Another great way to find new business opportunities is to team up with a freelancer or an agency that offers a complementary service — or at least a service that does not compete directly with yours. For example, developers are always in demand; if you know a freelance developer you may be able to network together and/or pass on a referral commission.
Providing a great service, however, is one of the best ways not only to get more clients but also to get repeat clients. So make sure your knowledge is in-depth and that you brand yourself and your company as professionally as possible.
Reporting & Analytics Audits
Audits are always a good starting point. A Google Analytics audit can be done quickly and can also be a good sales tool. If you provide a professional audit, and highlight issues and suggest solutions, you will hopefully win a new client.
You can find several Google Analytics audit templates in Google Data Studio.
Installing & Implementation — Changes to Analytics & Reporting
Once you have completed an audit, many businesses will take your suggestions and implement them themselves. However, much of the time, they’ll ask you to do it for them.
This could be as basic as installing Google Analytics on a WordPress site, to tracking certain button clicks, to setting up goals.
This is increasingly easy to do with Google Tag Manager, although you may have to start from scratch if the client does not already have this setup in place.
Be aware that if you don’t have a developer on hand, you may have to create certain “instructions” with added code snippets that you can send off to the company’s developer. It can help to have a freelance developer that you trust on hand too.
Analysis & Reporting Services
Before you dive headfirst into analytics and data studio, make sure that you do some preparation work and ask what the businesses are looking to achieve — what are its goals for this year and this quarter, etc.?
Where can you find relevant data to help them achieve those goals and make data-driven marketing decisions?
For example, if a phone answering company wants to increase the number of legal clients it is generating each month:
— Can you use old data to generate insights?
— Can you start to track anything new to help provide useful data moving forward?
— Can you compare the performance of different channels and calculate the return on investment or ad spend?
The end product will often be a dashboard that auto-updates every month for the client, but it is also important that the client knows what to do with that data and the dashboard.
By using Google Analytics, Tag Manager and Data Studio, you should be able to offer a great number of insightful dashboards and reports that are customized to the needs of each client.
Training Your Clients
This can be done face to face with clients, but this is also a scalable element of the business as you can use platforms such as Udemy to create courses.
Training at least one in-house person to use analytical tools and to be able to interpret data can make a huge difference to the operations of a business.