According to a recent article written by Andrew McMains of Adweek, most agencies have a presence on social media sites such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook, but infrequently use them to market themselves or pursue client prospects, notwithstanding the fact that the more traditional approaches are not working.
A recent survey from RSW/US and Second Wind, found that nearly three-quarters of the 212 agency leaders polled in the online survey are connected to LinkedIn, 66 percent to Facebook and 56 percent to Twitter. But when asked how frequently they use each, the majority said no more than once a month. For example, 47 percent conceded that they never tweet, 7 percent said they tweet less than once a month and 4 percent tweet just once monthly.
The findings were similar for blogs, with 56 percent of the respondents saying that their agencies have blogs, but only 6 percent use them daily. A whopping 66 percent indicated that they blog no more than once a month.
And while 58 percent of the agency leaders pointed to LinkedIn as the social media tool they employ most often in account prospecting, only 4 percent use any type of social media “often” in this context, compared to 22 percent who “never” do.
The survey, which was conducted last month, provides yet another illustration of agencies not practicing what they preach to clients for the marketing of their brands. This “cobbler’s son” syndrome is also evident in everything from Flash-heavy, information-poor agency Web sites to shops neglecting to buy sponsored links to their names on Google.
Interesatingly, these findings are consistent with the online survey I conducted in July of this year.
Nearly two thirds of agencies said that they do not have a documented and active social media strategy. This confirmed just how poorly prepared agencies are from a digital perspective. While most are actively out in the market trying to convince clients that they are indeed social media experts, they themselves have not embraced it as a critical component of their own marketing communications mix. Notwithstanding the fact that the more traditional approaches are not working.
On a side note, even more surprising was the fact that of the agencies who responded, well over half admitted to not having a documented and active SEO/M strategy. A receipe for disaster when you consider that in a recent survey of C-Suite executives, 74% of the respondents rated the internet as a very important source of business information and the fact that 100% of clients researched online 100% of the agencies that it intended to invite to a pitch. Search engine marketing is a fundamental component of internet marketing and even today, still garners the bulk of a clients interactive marketing dollars. Many ad agencies are missing a critical part of the communications puzzle in this instance.
It has never been more important for agencies to introduce innovation into their agency marketing initiatives. Building a following, creating dialog and listening to customers through social media techniques, are crucial to ongoing agency success.