<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none;" alt="" src="https://dc.ads.linkedin.com/collect/?pid=731202&amp;fmt=gif">

How a Marketing Retainer Is the Solution for You

Friday 9 September 2016

6 minute read

By Sarah Burns

When it comes to engaging with your agency about pricing, plans and the products that they will provide, one of the key aspects is always the cost.

With an inbound marketing retainer, we believe that both agency and customer are happier – after all, what company enjoys additional costs and vague outlines about expenditure?

Inbound marketing retainers, like any standard retainer platform, allow customers to know exactly what they can expect from their agency – and the opportunity to call them out on undelivered aspects of the retainer. Additionally, you know exactly how much money is coming out and this can be adjusted – should it need to be – between agency and client when the package needs to change.

Loyalty and transparency allow for your partnership to start – and remain – a happy one, as it gives everyone involved a clear guideline of expectations.

Of course, this can feel a bit “trapping” to clients that may not have agreed to a retainer solution in the past, but of course, that isn’t the case as long as you both agree on what the agreement is – in terms of services, pricing, time lines, goals and ongoing support packages.

Relationship growth

Every business/client relationship starts as strangers – mostly – and develops with ongoing communication – a retainer agreement ensures that this communication must continue.

Do you want someone to go away, do the work and then just hand you the results? Retainers probably won’t work for you.

If you have an ongoing marketing plan or campaign then your inbound marketing agency essentially becomes an external arm of your business and, therefore, a retainer works well in this scenario.

Both sides of the agreement work on building the relationship, as your agency works with you, not for you, on your marketing campaign – so you both naturally work to build up your relationship.

What drives you (and them)?

Have the same goals. You need to find an agency that is knowledgeable and realistic about your goals and how you will:

  1.  Achieve them
  2. Measure them
  3. Improve upon their progress

The ability to define these, and be in agreement on these, ensures that you’re both working together, in the same direction, so there is no reason that you can’t progress on these together.

An inbound marketing agency that is worth its salt will be honest and transparent about timescales, cost and the realistic chance of success with your goals.

If you’re both goal-driven then you’ll work together to succeed, whereas if you’re task driven then looking at the bigger picture is not #1 on your list, so a retainer model is wasted.

Continuing knowledge

Most agencies provide you with an Account Manager that will become your #1 point of call for updates on work, as well as your go-to-person for additional knowledge and support. Of course, this person can then hook you up with excellent information, recommendations of other businesses and services, as well as other people in the agency that will support particular elements of your agency’s retainer model.

Would you rather someone who was polite and avoided having an honest conversation with you about your business, campaign and progress with goals? What about someone that sat you down and said “Look, this goal is just not going to be reached in this way, at this time or with the budget you have”? Building a relationship with one agency allows you both to understand each other and have the frank conversations we sometimes need to have as agency/client.

Find out about our inbound marketing process, HubSpot retainer packages and the Thriveability Plan. 

If you're looking to embark on a website build project, whether it's completely from scratch or a site refresh, our ebook will give you the knowledge to make your project as stress-free as possible.

The Website Design Handbook for Businesses

You may also like to read...