We’re ready to be your tech company’s agency of record.
Sick of marketing agencies that don’t understand your industry, spend months perfecting a strategy and lock you into long-term contracts?
Yeah, us too.
That’s why we’ve developed a retainer model for our B2B software/tech clients that prioritizes quick wins while also planning toward long-term marketing goals.
Oh, and we never make our clients sign a long-term contract…even though they do tend to stick around for years after realizing we really are different from other agencies.
Typical Retainer Services
- Campaign development
- Content calendars
- Conversion optimization
- Lead scoring
- List segmentation
- Market research
- Case studies
- White papers
- Pillar pages
- Video production
- Google Ads
- Paid social
- Retargeting display ads
- G2 and other review sites
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Organic social media
- Account-based marketing
- A/B testing
- Drip workflows
- Gated landing pages
- Live chat/chatbots
- Email nurture campaigns
- ROI calculators
- Playbooks + battlecards
- Lead scoring + lifecycle stages
- Pitch decks
- Trade shows
- Sales collateral
- Revenue operations (RevOps)
- HubSpot Marketing Hub
- HubSpot Sales Hub
- HubSpot CRM
- HubSpot CMS
FAQs About Retainers
What are the benefits of a retainer?
Working with us as a strategic extension of your internal team:
- Creates a long-term partnership
- Facilitates collaboration, proactive thinking and continuity
- Allows us to be results-oriented vs. task-driven, which leads to big-picture thinking
- Gives you access to the best specialized talent with predictable output and quality
- Allows for regularly scheduled communication
How do we charge?
We use a point pricing model to ensure clients get the full value of every dollar spent, regardless of how much time it takes to deliver. Points are allocated monthly, allowing for the flexibility to adjust the tactical plan based on campaign performance and results.
- Cost/point: $75
- Most of our clients have retainers between 60-250 points.
- Basic-level retainers—around 60 points or $4,500/month—are good for small organizations looking to get started with inbound marketing basics.
- Professional-level retainers—around 120 points or $9,000/month—are good for growing marketing teams looking to scale with automation.
- Enterprise-level retainers—over 200 points or $15,000/month—are good for advanced marketing teams with aggressive growth goals.
- You can increase or decrease the number of points at any time.
- A monthly strategy/reporting fee equal to 20% of your total points will be deducted from the total points. This ensures your Account Manager has what they need to strategize with you and measure how your program or effort works, not just put actions in place.
- We don’t lock you into a contract; retainers are an evergreen commitment with a simple 30-day opt-out requirement (because sometimes we work ahead).
- Points are invoiced in advance of the month’s work. For example, the bill for work being done in March will be issued on March 1 and due on March 31.
- Media costs are paid directly by the client. In other words, your credit card will be on file with Google Ads; the media costs won’t flow through us and on to your next invoice.
Who will work on my account?
- Our Director of Client Success will be the lead strategist on your account. You will see this person most during the onboarding phase, but know that regular internal check-ins are occurring throughout your entire engagement. Once work on your account is underway, this person will also schedule special quarterly calls as an opportunity to privately discuss how things are going.
- We will also assign you an Account Manager or Account Executive to be your day-to-day point of contact. The people on our client services team have worked as in-house marketing managers in the past, so they understand what it’s like to be in your shoes. This means they’re a great project manager, of course, but also a marketing strategist who will be proactive and suggest new ideas for your account.
- You will also have access to a team of more than a dozen other specialists like designers, developers, writers, technologists and more. These people will work mostly behind-the-scenes, but will be on calls to present work and ask questions whenever it would be helpful.
What is project management like?
During onboarding, your Account Manager will set you up with a few different tools to make communication and project management a breeze. This will include an invite to:
- ActiveCollab: Fondly referred to as “AC,” ActiveCollab is an online project management platform where discussions about your retainer will happen. This is also where we’ll recap meeting notes, assign our internal team members tasks and more. While notifications will push to email, a permanent record will remain in AC…just in case anyone is on vacation or wasn’t CC’d on an email!
- Your customized game plan: This shared Google Sheets file will contain multiple tabs, including what we’re working on this month, a parking lot of ideas for the future, a content audit, important links/passwords and more.
Once the retainer is underway, you will also have:
- Weekly, bi-weekly or monthly status calls with your Account Manager (frequency depends on retainer size)
- Monthly meetings to more formally review KPIs and dashboards
- Quarterly calls with the Director of Client Success to make sure everything is progressing smoothly and identify areas where we can improve
What types of projects will you work on?
The answer, of course, it depends! While the deliverables of every retainer engagement are customized to their unique situation, we typically perform some combination of the activities below.
- Technology: setting up a new portal, auditing and optimizing existing tactics within HubSpot, integrating/syncing HubSpot with outside systems
- CRM/data clean up: identifying inactive or outdated contacts, defining lead scoring criteria, using workflows for ongoing data cleanup, creating segmented lists
- Lead gen campaigns: gated landing pages, emails for a lead nurturing workflow, social posts, CTA graphics, pop-up forms, etc.
- Lead nurturing campaigns: segmented emails and related content based on lifecycle stage, industry and/or buyer persona
- Search engine optimization: SEO audit, keyword strategy, copy optimization, tweaking technical settings, etc.
- Conversion optimization: measuring with HotJar, A/B testing for on-page copy, UX design and CTAs, customizing live chat or chatbots
- Paid advertising: campaign strategy, setup, ad design, ongoing management on multiple channels (e.g., Google Ads, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.)
- Content marketing: planning, writing and promoting premium content (e.g., white papers, eBooks, case studies), blog posts and pillar pages
- Social media: unique, engaging and compelling post development and distribution on multiple platforms
- Sales enablement: PowerPoint templates, presentation design, lead scoring, brochures/flyers, sales email/phone messaging, etc.
- Ongoing reporting: reviewing stats within HubSpot, Google Analytics, Octoboard, etc., and then making strategic recommendations
- Other tactics, as necessary
What happens during the first month of a retainer?
We understand you don’t want to wait months for results…but we’ve also been doing this long enough to know that jumping right into tactics won’t work well over the long run either.
That’s why we’ve designed a system where new retainers use their first month’s worth of points to develop an accelerated marketing plan. This means we’ll spend month No. 1 doing things like:
- Compiling your team’s wish list of marketing-related things to do
- Auditing your website and other marketing channels (e.g., your HubSpot portal)
- Reviewing your brand standards and collateral
- Researching what your competitors are doing for marketing
- Tweaking your buyer personas and messaging, if necessary
At the end of the month, we’ll have a solid game plan for what needs to happen in the first few months of your retainer. This will be a mix of short-term wins (the proverbial low-hanging fruit) as well as other tactics that require longer-term planning and execution. We will also be sure to let you know where any of your internal team members could pitch in to make things go faster.