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How to Stand Out From the Crowd as a Digital Marketing Agency Old -fashioned advertising and pricing transparency is a good start.

By Scott Langdon Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Boris Austin | Getty Images

With the popularity of digital marketing agencies increasing, it can be difficult to distinguish your company from the competition. But standing out as a unique company is extremely important if you want to attract new clients. If you find yourself stuck in a rut and not sure how to make your brand stand out from the crowd, or if you're a new company just starting out and looking to form a client base, consider some of the following strategies to improve the visibility and popularity of your digital marketing business.

Use content marketing and establish a niche.

One way to stand out is to bypass the popular topics for content that your competitors are most likely publishing in favor of specialized content that is different from what's already out there, and more tailored to your business. First, you'll need to learn about the market that you're in and identify your target audience. Look at your competition, learn from their successes and failures, and think about what you have to offer people that they can't get anywhere else.

Related: 5 Strategies for Creating Epic Content Marketing on a Tight Budget

Try to get yourself into a niche industry that makes your business different. It's not a bad idea to choose a niche that others seem to be failing at. But if that doesn't work, and you have to provide the same services as everyone else, try to focus on one or two areas at which to excel. This strategy should be reflected in the content that you're publishing. Don't just produce the same blog articles and videos that everyone else is creating; use content as an opportunity to distinguish yourself from the competition, and highlight the areas that make your company special. Once you've written some popular content pieces, read this article for tips on how to capitalize on your success.

Create a unique and engaging pitch.

Your sales pitch is usually a customer's first impression of your business, so it's important to spend some time working on this area. Again, it's good to see what your competition is pitching so that you can make sure to set your brand apart. When creating a pitch, figure out what your customers need, and incorporate a solution to their problems into your slogan. Create a well-thought-out plan that explains in detail how your services will ensure business success. Be prepared to provide that pitch again and again in a variety of different formats -- email, in person, social media, etc.

The pitch is what you use to both draw people in and keep them there, so it should be a major part of your brand. Amend this pitch a little for each new client so that it best fits their needs. You shouldn't use a "one size fits all" approach. It's better to alienate some groups of potential customers in order to serve others better than it is to try to please everyone and not do it well. The HubSpot blog suggests asking yourself the following questions and incorporating the answers into your pitch:

  • What do we do? What services or channels do we know best?
  • Who do we do it for? What consumer groups do we understand?
  • How do we do it? How do our values and beliefs change the way we work?
  • Why do we do it? What is our shared purpose?

Don't forget about data.

Regardless of whether you're trying to make your business stand out, you need to show that you're a credible expert on your subject matter in order to find and keep clients. On the plus side, this could be a way to set yourself apart from the competition if credibility is not something that they're focused on. Data is a great way to show credibility. Incorporate marketing data into your pitch, into your content and anywhere else it might be appropriate.

TapClicks suggests using data to show how your marketing strategy works -- both successes and failures -- how you personalize user experiences and how your strategy drives sales. Make sure the data you're sharing is relevant and accessible so you don't alienate potential clients with an overwhelming amount of numbers, but definitely rely on data to prove you know what you're doing.

Related: 5 Reasons Why Digital Content Is Going to Be The Next Big Thing

Get back into old-fashioned advertising.

Advertise in person, in print, online, at events, etc. Network anywhere you can. You can also give current clients an incentive to network for you, like 10 percent off if they refer a new client. Consider teaching classes or speaking at events. You'll need to be creative about how you get the word out about your business. Keep in mind you have a ton of competition, so advertising is not an area you want to slack on, especially if other digital marketing agencies are out there dominating your network. Most likely you'll connect with a ton of new people, so be sure to follow up with all of them. There's a good chance you won't get a ton of responses, and even less people will actually sign up as clients, so it's important to follow up with all leads. Also, make sure you're visible online. Don't ignore SEO. You should be using keywords and incorporating links into the content that you publish so your business ranks well on Google.

Incorporate interactive content.

Interactive content is a new trend that seems to be a lot more successful than regular, static content. According to Outgrow, interactive content drives 70 percent more conversions than static. Interactive content is things like quizzes, calculators, polls and surveys, interactive infographics -- anything that gets people engaged in learning as opposed to blog posts they read or videos they watch. One of the reasons live videos are so popular is that people have the opportunity to watch and ask questions and receive responses in real time.

There's a reason why people are always online taking Buzzfeed quizzes to find out what their pizza preference means for their love life. They like to participate, and they like to have fun while getting answers. And in some cases they don't seem to care about how genuine those answers are. I'm not suggesting you put out a bunch of fake quizzes -- you definitely want your interactive content to be relevant and valuable. Outgrow suggests adding calculators for cost, ROI, marketing diagnostics, etc. Just try to think of ways to get people involved in your information.

Not sure where to start? Check out this article from Entrepreneur.com on how to engage people with interactive content.

Consider using pricing to set yourself apart.

When all else fails, use pricing to differentiate yourself from the competition. Again, this requires you to do research into your competitors to find out what services they're offering and for what price. You don't necessarily have to be a lot cheaper; you just need to be different. Consider offering services in a bundle or package at a discounted rate if there are things that people often pay for together. Offer a money back guarantee. Incorporate performance-based pricing. Or, just be completely transparent about your prices and post them on your website, on social media and on any print materials. You'd be surprised how many companies won't divulge pricing information until after you've already agreed to meet with them.

Related: To Grow Your Business, You Need to Handcraft Your Experience With Early Customers

Hopefully you've picked up some good tips on how to make your digital marketing agency stand out from the crowd. Can you think of any other ways to make sure your business shines in this competitive market?

Scott Langdon

Managing partner of HigherVisibility

Scott Langdon is an entrepreneur with over 13 years of internet marketing experience, and currently serves as a managing partner of the nationally-recognized SEO firm HigherVisibility. Langdon and the HigherVisibility team work with clients of all sizes from across the country to offer a full range of interactive marketing services. He resides in Memphis, Tennessee.

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