Similar to a pastry chef making brownies, creative work can be second nature to agencies. But as our own experience and the experiences of other agencies tell us, nailing and scaling can sometimes prove to be a little too much.
Thankfully, this is where the "P" in Creative Process Outsourcing comes in.Through years of partnering with HubSpot partner agencies, we've come to identify a few essentials for inbound marketing that is delightful for all parties involved.
Creative Processes (Or ‘What Kind Of Cocoa?’)
On a startup, consultant or freelancer level, it's easy to say that hours and steps vary from project to project. But as your client list grows, this DIY attitude can take a toll on your business.
StraightArrow addresses this by giving HubSpot partners a sneak peak into its Process Engineering Group (PEG).
PEG begins by documenting processes involved in each creative team. These documents serve as beginners’ guides to tasks like website development, lead generation, eBook design, blog post writing and more. This informs each Creative of our exacting standards of quality, estimated turnaround times, and expected output.These process documents look a little like that famous brownie recipe from the Pentagon.
(For the curious, the recipe indicates "Cocoa shall be natural process cocoa of the type known as medium fat cocoa.")
Once approved, these process documents are translated into printable charts and training sessions. The charts provide quick visual references and the training sessions help Creatives understand the interdependencies between teams e.g. how Creative Designers rely on Content Writers.
Understanding Your Strengths - The Key Ingredient
We've had our share of agency partners that have grown with us and those that have found a better fit elsewhere. From these, we’ve learned how important it is to understand each partner's strengths. This helps us identify what kind of team can support you best. Let’s look at them here:
A. Your Marketing Expertise + Our Project Team
In this set up, we want to leverage your marketing savvy and your in-depth knowledge of the HubSpot Marketing Automation Software. To do this, we place you at the helm of your own project management team. Here, you’ll be the lead strategist for your clients so that one of our project managers can help turn your vision into reality. This is done by creating timelines for and following up with our Creatives.
B. Your Technical Expertise + Our Inbound Marketing Team
On the other hand, your strengths could lie in one aspect of Creative work such as: design, content, web development, search engine marketing, or social media. They may also lie in sales or in marketing for clients - leaving you little time or resources to market for yourself. For this, we can complement you with the strategies and advice of one of our inbound marketers and with the work of other Creatives. Together, this can make a great team that can focus on growing your list of potential clients or in helping your clients’ businesses grow.
Establishing Points of Contact
We recommend holding weekly Skype calls that involve your agency’s marketing or sales manager and creative director. This is to help you and our team keep up to date on the status of projects and campaigns. Depending on the campaign’s requirement, these calls may also involve talking to your clients to understand their needs.
We then send no-fuss monthly reports to help you discuss highlights and roadblocks with the businesses you serve. We also employ project management and job order software to track the progress of tasks.
Find Out How The Cookie Crumbles
If you're interested in scaling and supporting your agency with a project team, schedule a free consultation with us.