Important Elements Of An Agency Social Media Proposal – Part 1 of 5 – The Meeting

Bundle Post is very blessed to have patent pending technology for the social media industry and an incredible amount of experience conducting social media marketing previously. Why does that make us blessed you ask? Because we do not have competitors and we are able to provide a lot of expertise to our target market of social media agencies, strategists, consultants and internal brand departments.

Part of helping many of our social media connections and Bundle Post users is providing expertise and insight related to operating a social media marketing agency. We have done it successfully. As a company and for me personally, it is a priority of ours we intend on living up to. Since we are now solely a social media marketing software company, we can and will share some of this information to help you our audience.

In this 4 part series, we are going to cover the following elements of a social media agency proposal:

1) The client meeting

2) The commitment

3) The key elements to include in the proposal

4) Pricing and terms to address

5) A social media proposal template

The client meeting.

Through our experience of conducting effective social media marketing for clients all over the world, we discovered a specific process that was more effective at signing new social media clients. I’m sure there are several ways you could go about your sales process, but this is what we found that was the most effective.

 Rule #1 – We NEVER generated a proposal for a client unless we already had discussed their project, requirements and costs, and received a tentative “Yes” from the client.  Creating proposals for clients you have not properly educated, investigated and tentatively closed, only burns your most precious resource… Time. Additionally, you set yourself up for being disappointed, having a very low close ratio and flooding your market with your ideas and pricing for your competition to use. Always follow rule number one!

Following are the important meeting items that comply with our first rule of the social media proposal.

Always conduct a meeting with the prospective client. If you can’t do it in person, do it via phone. You need to understand their knowledge of social media marketing, evaluate what they are currently doing and set expectations.

1) Start by asking questions

In order to understand where social media needs to fit into your clients business, you must first understand their business. You need to know what their current marketing consists of and what the overall business issues are.

Some questions you should be asking…

a) about their business and clientele

b) their current social media footprint

c) what are their reasons for being interested in a social media marketing program

2) Educate

Since you will typically be dealing with clients that are not currently active in social media or at least have a very limited presence and results. With businesses of this type, we have always taken a very different approach than most, in that we never start off selling what we do in a client meeting. I found that giving an extremely detailed analogy of the clients situation from the beginning, sets the stage to make us the obvious choice to handle the clients social media marketing.

The way we did this was by telling a story about the clients situation and the current state of social media. It goes something like this;

Here is the challenge you have “Client”. This is social media and is very different than typical marketing or advertising. Think of it as a marathon and not a sprint. It is about building and maintaining real relationships with your prospects and customers. The problem is that the gun went off several years ago and you guys are not even really in the race. You have no athlete, have not begun stretching or training and don’t even have a professional coach.

What’s worse is that your competitors are not only in the race, they are making good time. Your customers are on the sidelines of the marathon route watching your competitors run by, and you are nowhere to be seen. So it is not about if, it is about when you are going to have to be in this race and have a very professional pace in order to catch up with and beat the lead pack…

From there we get into the details of social media

a) explain social media marketing

Be sure to explain how you build relationships using social media, how it is selfless and about providing relevance and value to your audience. Explain the complexities of a general strategy and content and how response and conversation is imperative. Include the amount of posts required on different platforms and the monitoring and details of making it effective.

There are two main reasons for doing the above in great detail: 1) Show your knowledge as their expert. 2) Help them realize the amount of details, functions and activity social media requires and 3) That they do not have the time or knowledge to do it themselves

b) explain the sites relevant to their business

Using what you learned about their business in the “ask questions” step, you should now have an idea of the social platforms their brand should be using. Give them an overview of the 1,2 or 3 (keep it to three to start their campaign) social networks they need to have a presence on and explain why. Again, details and complexities are what you are wanting to get across here.

c) present your plan

If you did your homework before the meeting, as well as listened during the question step, you should be able to outline in simple terms what their initial program should be like. What you recommend, the activity you will be doing on which networks, etc. Most importantly, you should know what you are doing well enough to start discussing costs.

3) Discuss budget and requirements

a) Their budget

At this point, you should have an idea of the clients financial situation and approximately what the costs for their program would need to be. You will want this to be a monthly fee and for a specified period of time. More on terms and pricing in Part 4.

b) Recap

Next you will want to again recap all of the things that your firm will be doing on a setup, daily and weekly basis. DO NOT rush this. Go through the detail of all the activity that will need to be done, including; creation of pages/accounts, customized landing pages and backgrounds, building their community size, following, follow-backs, unfollowing, posting, responding, etc.  The more detail you explain, the better.

c) Q & A

Ask the client if they have any questions, then LISTEN. You need to be quiet and let the prospect think, then speak, then ask questions. Your job here is to hear what they are REALLY saying. Are they making excuses or coming up with reasons why they can’t do it right now? Are they displaying fear due to their lack of understanding? Are they having a budget issue?

Handle their questions with care. Recap the massive requirements on time and resources. Remind them their customers are already in the race. Explain to them again that social media is where the people are and more importantly where they prefer to connect with businesses.

Again, there are many ways to get a prospective client to a social media proposal. My experience has shown this method works well. More importantly, it works quickly.

27 Comments

Filed under Agency, Social Media, Social Media Marketing

27 responses to “Important Elements Of An Agency Social Media Proposal – Part 1 of 5 – The Meeting

  1. “Ask the client if they have any questions, then LISTEN. You need to be quiet and let the prospect think, then speak, then ask questions. ”

    One of the biggest problems with salespeople is their unwillingness to endure silence. I was trained many years ago by a sales coach who embraced silence as a selling tool, and preached that “the first one to speak, buys.”

    In this age of listening, the same advice still applies. Let your prospect think, formulate her questions, and then speak.

  2. This is excellent! I never considered myself a sales person but followed the advice of a friend of mine and someone I admire – Brad Justice – who wrote the Holy Grail of Sales. He made 40 million over 10 years in sales and his advice has been a treasure. This post adds to my arsenal. Love it!

  3. Great post Robert. You made the following important point : “… we have always taken a very different approach than most, in that we never start off selling what we do in a client meeting.” I so agree with this! It has worked for me to take the approach in a first meeting that I’m trying to establish credibility as a resource and create a relationship, not trying to sell. Create comfort and desire first and the selling gets much easier.
    @afinkelman

  4. Great post Robert. You have given a great template. Looking forward to the rest.

  5. Great post and very true. I wish more people worked and thought this way.

  6. Great article! Well done Robert!

  7. Excellent post Robert! Really useful for me just starting out. Look forward to todays post…. :-).

  8. Pingback: Important Elements Of An Agency Social Media Proposal – Part 2 of 5 – The Commitment | bundlepost

  9. For any serious online business to survive, it must take social media as the bedrock of its success. It’s like the nerve centre of online business success

  10. Pingback: Important Elements Of An Agency Social Media Proposal – Part 3 of 5 – What To Include | bundlepost

  11. Pingback: Important Elements Of An Agency Social Media Proposal – Part 4 of 5 – Pricing/Terms | bundlepost

  12. Hi Robert,
    I want to thank you for sharing your insights and knowledge. You have awesome information for the person starting out in social media networking. The do’s don’t etc. I found you on twitter and I wanted to connect with you and I also was consumed reading the valuable information you have available. Thanks for living out your dreams so that others can live out there. I appreciate you not living in fear and taking the risk to make a difference in someone else life.
    Hugs and much love to you.
    Madgie

    • Madgie,

      I am truly speechless. It is one thing to have a mission and pursue that mission. It is entirely another when others recognize your efforts and what you are doing.

      I am honored and humbled by your comments. They are truly appreciated hun.

      Robert

  13. Pingback: Important Elements Of An Agency Social Media Proposal – Part 5 The Template | bundlepost

  14. I am truly blessed to have found you and connected with you. And to have you as my mentor is truly an amazing thing that I don’t even think I deserve. I want to thank you for all the knowledge, value and support you have given me so far and offered to give me. Truly Something You Don’t Find Easily. I need to follow more of what you do and input towards my clients. I have been thinking all day of what you said in our call and I need to step up. Thank you!!!

  15. Love this post Robert. Nice outline.

  16. Pingback: Key Considerations For A Social Media Agency’s Client Pricing | bundlepost

  17. Pingback: 5 Mistakes Social Media Agencies Make Before Even Getting A Client | BundlePost

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