As one of the many fantastic account managers at TechWyse, I’ve wondered what has allowed us to be so successful in our roles. Each of us has a different personality and working style. Some account managers chat with clients about sports on the phone, while others love creating decks full of data.
With all these differences, what’s the underlying connection? What makes a great account manager?
1. Understanding your client’s business
The first thing any account manager should do before delving into a new account is to understand the client’s business. This is done in two ways:
- Understanding the client’s goals for their business
- Knowing the client’s industry
Understanding the client’s aspirations for their business provides the account manager with an end game – a clear, achievable goal. Does the client want more phone calls? More downloads of their informational brochure? Sign ups to an event? An account manager needs to know how the client will be measuring their success moving forward. Once goals are determined, the account manager can develop a marketing strategy that will achieve these goals.
Understanding the client’s business is only one piece of the puzzle for an effective account manager. Having a firm grasp on the client’s industry is also crucial to the success of the campaign. An account manager might have experience working with other businesses in similar verticals as you, and therefore would be well versed in the appropriate marketing approach. However, if the industry is new to the account manager, they should take the initiative to educate themselves on your industry. Having candid conversations with clients is a great way to understand their industry. Clients live and breath their industry – and are the best resource we have!
2. Know your client’s competition
As an account manager, I should know each client’s biggest competitors. The best offense is a strong defense, and in order to build a strategy with the intention of beating out the competition, we need to know how our client’s competitors are approaching their marketing strategy.
If you’re a plastic surgeon, in a competitive industry, what are your competitors doing online? Your account manager should look into the engaging online strategies they are using to determine how you can be competitive. Are other plastic surgeons bidding on your brand name? These are things your account manager should know.
What are you competitors strengths and weakness? If your account manager determines that your competitors have a poor SEO strategy, but a strong PPC presence, this can help shape your strategy moving forward.
It’s also important to understand what your competitors are offering. How do you differ from your competitors and can we use that to our advantage online?
3. Product and service knowledge
As an account manager, my job is to know which marketing strategies are the most effective and how to apply these to my client’s campaigns in order to generate the best results.
Whether it’s SEO, PPC, display, remarketing, social media or any other digital marketing strategy – I need know the role of each of these services in your campaigns and the value they have for your business. Most account managers have clients in various industries. What works for a dentist might not work for an alarm system company, so account managers need to understand the client’s goals, industry and target market.
The best account managers take the initiative to continuously educate themselves on what is new and trending in the digital universe. For example, if the client is running a Google AdWords campaign, the account manager should be sharing the newest Google beta features, and determining which of these features are relevant to the client’s business. This will give the client a leg up on the competition and improve their campaign’s performance overall.
4. Good communicator
Whether it’s presenting to a group of decision makers, explaining reports, writing emails or chatting on the phone, your account manager needs to be a great communicator. Not only do we need to help clients understand the value of the services our company provides, we need to create a story with the numbers we see in the client’s reporting.
Helping clients understand the value of our services can be a challenge. We know what SEO, PPC, and conversion optimization means for a client’s business, but more often than not, the client does not. An account manager needs to be able to show their client the value of digital marketing strategies. As a business owner, you want to know that your hard earned dollars are being spent effectively and producing a positive ROI. If an account manager isn’t able to communicate this, why would you want to continue spending your money?
The ability to convert numbers into a language that clients can understand is also key to an account manager’s success. Your bounce rate decreased 18%, your conversion rate increased 25% and your CPL is down 32% – so what? Well, a great account manager will be able to tell you that this means traffic is relevant, staying on your site and producing more leads, and you are paying less for those leads (a.k.a your marketing dollars are going further).
5. Results focused
Show me the results! It doesn’t sound as great as Jerry Maguire’s version, but it still applies to the account manager mindset. Like in Jerry Maguire, your success is my success. Account managers want clients to be successful because that means we are excelling at our job. Our goal is to help your business grow, and we measure that in a variety of ways, including:
- Leads and conversions
- Traffic growth
- Rankings on search engines like Google
Sometimes, clients might not see the value in key performance indicators (KPIs) like improved engagement, but these are crucial to the success of your campaigns. Your end goal might be a sale, but KPIs are the necessary steps that lead to your overall goal. Although it might seem like your account manager is focused on irrelevant achievements, it’s quite the opposite. Your account manager knows your business’s goals, and can see the big picture when it comes to achieving the small, necessary steps in order to be successful in your overall objectives. So, the next time your account manager tells you your bounce rate is down or your time on site is up, remember these are all part of the journey to increasing conversions.
Sports, music, eating habits – we’re all different! But what makes each of us successful in our role is our passion for marketing and helping businesses achieve success. If you’re ready to take your business to the top, or if you’d like to connect with one of the wild personalities in the account management department, contact TechWyse today!