How do leading agencies use automation to meet client needs?

July 6, 2021

Automation and AI are the bread and butter of leading marketing agencies. Without them, meeting client expectations is practically impossible. For marketing agencies newer to the world of automation, deciding where to start can be complicated and overwhelming. In this blog, we will explore what your clients really expect from you and where automation is essential in meeting these expectations.


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How do leading agencies use automation to meet client needs?

Automation is EVERYWHERE and takes up more and more space in the digital marketing world. This coupled with the fact your clients are better informed of the automation opportunities adds a sizable amount of pressure for digital marketing agencies. You have to stay in the know as your clients expect you to.

Forrester conducted a study for Google in which they asked 300 brand marketing leaders “what benefits do you expect from an effective digital marketing agency partnership?”. The top responses were:

  1. 43% expect more profit
  2. 41% expect more ROI
  3. 37% expect their agency to keep pace with shifts in consumer behavior

While responses 1 and 2 are to be expected, number 3 really caught my attention. In line with consumer needs, the goal of effective marketing is to stay relevant. Between 30% and 50% of consumers in European markets prefer to engage with and purchase from purpose-built brands that deliver relevant content rather than only ads.

In eCommerce, automation tools are the driver to work on the hard KPIs such as profit and ROI and, at the same time, enable you to maintain and improve your expertise and smart strategies. In the end, the purposeful messaging and understanding of consumer behavior have to be added to the campaigns by nobody else but you.


Let’s look at it like this: With tooling at hand, you free your schedule to do the deep thinking and strategizing that AI cannot take over from you and find a way to feed the algorithms with exactly the data they need. In a world where agencies have access to the same pool of tools and software, the distinguishing characteristic is how you use them.

Now that automation has generally been accepted, advertisers find themselves in a position in which they have access to the same tools and algorithms, which leaves little room to differentiate themselves from competitors. So the question becomes: How do you outperform your competitors despite leveraging the same instruments? By shifting the narrative to supplying algorithms with the right data to make the best possible decisions to drive maximum performance.

Job Hilbers, Head of Paid Search at Artefact

How can both you and your client profit from change through automation?

Join forces with technology! The technical knowledge that agencies had developed over the years has become somewhat redundant. But leading agencies appreciate the time that their consultants have won back to actually advise their clients and to develop creative strategies that allow algorithms to perform at their best.

The nature of the relationship between an agency and its clients may actually change for the better. As an account manager, automation allows you more time to work much more closely with your brands and to share your knowledge in order to help them acquire a certain know-how themselves. The way agencies work is also becoming more holistic. Media teams work closely together with data analysts and technology experts to use first-party data in the best way possible.

Agencies need AI to grow but AI needs you to rise and shine

Agencies need automation in order to scale. The more tasks you can automate, the more clients you can manage with the same personpower. In an agency context, account managers, as the actual users of automation tools and software, will be in charge of mastering and educating the machines in order to help AI grow in the right direction.

This role of the human at the intersection of automating and strategizing will become even more important with increasingly smart algorithms. Your understanding of performance data will be needed in order to find the right starting point for a campaign. Only when your strategy is in place and working, will you be able to hand over the baton that is the campaign to AI.

Do you want to be at the forefront of automation and master your biggest challenges? Find out all you need to know about feed management and PPC automation for digital marketing agencies in the dedicated agency space on our website.

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Jill KiwittPartner Marketing

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