Top 3 Must-Have Tools for Agencies

13-Jan 2022
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Kit Lewis CONTENT MANAGER

As the need for agencies continues to grow, the heavy workload assigned to many agency professionals isn’t surprising. The high demand for agency services inevitably leads to employees having to juggle multiple clients, and multiple projects, at any given moment. Thankfully, innovative systems and resources make managing these moving parts less of a nightmare and more of a well-oiled machine. 

These days, it's more urgent than ever for companies in every industry to adopt these tools. High levels of competition and uncertainty means agencies need streamlined, effective work management processes to ensure they're giving top-notch service to each client, every single time. 

There are a lot of tools out there, but the following three are the most important for agencies looking to be the most efficient and profitable.

1. Project Management Tools for Agencies 

Managing concurrent projects for different clients is challenging enough, but add in the fact that other team members are simultaneously working on different aspects of the same project – that's a lot of pieces that need to keep moving in concert with one another. Project management software is necessary.

There are a ton of options for project management tools. Some of the best roll project management into a package of services including a wide range of other tools for managing your business and clients. As an agency, your work centers on the client, so rather than a simple project management software, what you really need is client work management software. 

Accelo is a great example of a platform specifically designed for agencies and for optimizing your team's efficiency when it comes to projects and client relations. Accelo brings unique functionality for agencies, offering things like retainers to streamline internal processes and better manage recurring work.

Features To Look for in Project Management Tools

Having a bird's-eye-view of every part of a project is necessary for your team to stay proactive about possible delays, roadblocks or last-minute client requests. Here are some of the most important project management features to look for and how they'll benefit your agency: 

  • Task management: Both normal and complex projects involve many tasks, each with its own set of sub-tasks. Some of the best task management features to look for are the complete authority over project execution, transparency for project team members, and collaborative tools hosted on a centralized platform. 
  • Time tracking: Staying on track to hit deadlines is vital for cultivating a reliable reputation as a professional services agency. Effective time management strategies enabled by digital tools help ensure your agency accurately forecasts the required hours for each aspect of a project. 
  • Resource management: Managing your resources, including each employee's time, leads to greater productivity and increased project completion by preventing conflicts and disorganized workflows. 
  • User role management: Each user does not need access to every part of a project. A good rule of thumb for ensuring your agency practices sound cybersecurity strategy includes periodic entitlement reviews of user access permissions. Robust project management software often contains functions for assigning user access permissions and roles on a project-specific basis. 
  • Kanban board: Kanban is a leading project management methodology that assists with the successful flow of tasks each team member is working on toward shared objectives. 
  • Reports and data analysis: Reports allow consistent monitoring of key performance indicators for both your agency's internal and external projects and processes. It's essential to know how each of the aspects of your business's operations and campaigns are doing at any given time. 
  • Third-party integration: Rather than taking the time and resources to develop proprietary tools for specific solutions, it's frequently a faster, better option for businesses to integrate tools from a third party into their existing workflows to build quicker, more efficient services. Slack, Google Calendar, and cloud storage providers are common third-party tools for agencies. 

2. Email Marketing Tools

99% of consumers check their email every day, and the vast majority of people — including 73% of millennials — prefer to receive updates and communications from brands via email. Any brand trying to succeed in the digital marketplace can’t afford to ignore those statistics.

Implementing an email marketing tool not only allows your agency to reach clients where they already are but provides an opportunity to personalize content, easily collect customer feedback and improve sales with increased leads and conversions.

Features to Look for in Email Marketing Tools

Adding an email marketing tool to your agency’s toolkit is an important step to personalizing client communication and improving communication efficiency overall. Here are some of the top features to consider when deciding on the right tool for your agency:

  • Automation: When you’re building a relationship with a potential client, being able to personalize messages and support their individual needs is essential. Email automation allows you to create an automated system that helps build trust with your clients.
  • Mobile-responsive templates: Many of those daily email users mentioned above are checking their inboxes on their mobile devices. Having mobile-responsive email templates makes setting up a new email a quick and easy task, and it ensures your clients have the best user experience while interacting with your agency.
  • Reporting and analytics: If your agency is taking the time to send emails, it’s important to track their impact. Reporting tools will show your open rates, clickthrough rates, conversions and more so you can track the success of your emails and adjust to better reach your audience.

3. Customer Relationship Management Tools 

Customer relationship management (CRM) comprises the various strategies and technologies used to interact with an agency's existing and potential customer base. Forming quality relationships with customers and nurturing these relationships forms a solid basis for building brand loyalty with your agency's customers, leading to increased profits. 

CRMs for agencies collect customer data to ensure communications and operations with individual customers are running smoothly and expectations are being met or even exceeded. A happy customer remains a customer. 

Features to Look for in Customer Relationship Management Tools

Building strong client relationships is a key step for any successful agency, so finding the right tool to help you manage your client relationships is crucial. Here are some important features to consider when selecting a CRM for your business:

  • Contact management: Keeping up with contact details is a tedious and time-consuming task. With contact management, a CRM allows an agency to quickly connect with current and potential customers with the most up-to-date information. 
  • Interaction tracking: Having a tool that can track each interaction between your client and your agency will keep your employees on the same page and will help you provide more personalized support to your client.
  • Email integration: If your agency communicates with clients through email, a CRM with email integration will allow your team to better track project status without having to change their preferred method of communication.

READ NEXT: The Best Agency Management Software — Reviews and Rollout Tips

The Takeaway

As an agency, your number one goal is to provide the very best service to your clients, and having the right tools is essential for meeting that goal. The powerful combination of project management, email marketing and CRM tools can infuse your company with the productivity and efficiency it needs to succeed.  

Accelo is a client work management platform that brings all three of these agency tools together into a centralized hub offering additional services like retainers, support ticketing automation and invoicing. Sign up for a trial to see how your agency can reclaim its time and focus it where it needs to be — your clients.

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Tech for BusinessAgencies
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