As the summer season approaches, agencies like yours may be preparing for a temporary lull in business activity. It's no secret for agencies that the warmer months often bring a slowdown, with new clients delaying their projects for September and current clients reducing their investments for July and August.
As a result, you might be thinking about following the trend and reducing your own marketing investments. But even if it may be tempting to scale back during this time, we're here to share insights that will challenge that notion.
At Sortlist, we firmly believe that maintaining a consistent marketing and visibility budget during summer is a strategic move that will positively impact your agency's growth.
While some of your competitors are slowing down and waiting for September, not only do you have the occasion to strengthen your visibility on the market, but you also have the occasion to be contacted by clients who keep looking for agencies during July and August.
You can literally get ahead of your competitors, just by maintaining your current visibility efforts. Or you can stop, and be overtaken in the rankings by other agencies.
This report presents data-driven insights we’ve gathered by analyzing the trends from last year's summer. By reading on, you will learn how maintaining a visibility budget can help you gain a competitive edge as well as position your agency for accelerated growth during this potentially calmer period.
☀️ 2022 Summer Trends
Companies are still searching for agencies during summer
Historically, the summer months have been perceived as a time when clients tend to reduce their investments and slowdown their activity. However, last year's data tell a different story:
From June to september 2022, Sortlist’s organic traffic has constantly averaged around 200.000 visits per month. Not only were companies browsing our directories to compare agencies, but they were also ready to start a collaboration.
In July and August 2022, more than 13 000 projects were created on the platform:
Those projects were carried by companies such as:
The Kraft Heinz Company,
And we expect those numbers to grow during summer 2023, as our monthly organic traffic has doubled since last year:
Today, Sortlist averages around 500.000 monthly visits on its website, which will lead to more projects launched during summer 2023.
🧐 Companies' needs
What are companies looking for on Sortlist during summer?
By giving a closer look at the data, we realized that certain expertises were more sought after than others:
Social Media, Digital Strategy, Website Creation, Advertising and Branding were the top 5 most popular expertises in summer 2022. Together, they represented 55% of the projects posted on Sortlist.
We expect summer 2023 to be the same, as data from April and May show a similar trend:
Marketing, Website Creation, Social Media, Digital Strategy and Advertising are the current top 5 most popular expertises. In the last 2 months, they represented more than half of the project posted on Sortlist, just above 50%.
So if you provide any of those services, we can only recommend you to invest on your visibility to make sure summer clients can find your agency when they browse our directories.
🤝 Your future clients
Which companies are using Sortlist during summer?
If we look at last summer’s data, we realize that most projects were created by business owners, 38% to be precise.
On the other hand, 25% were created by marketing managers, marketing directors or marketing consultants.
This means that 63% of projects created on Sortlist, almost two thirds, are posted either by business owners or marketing specialists.
💡 This fact can give you ideas about how to craft an impactful first message, as you know who’s most likely to read it.
Furthermore, if we look at the size of the companies they work in, we see that:
We expect those numbers and sectors to stay consistent during summer 2023, as the data from April and May 2023 are quite similar.
38% of project posters are still business owners, while 20% were posted by marketing specialists (i.e. Managers, directors, consultants) coming from the same sectors as in summer 2022.
💰 Average budgets
How much do companies invest?
It depends on the project and the expertise they need:
Companies with Advertising projects invested 20.000€ on average,
Events was 35.000€ on average.
Branding was 21.000€ on average.
Unfortunately, these numbers might go down, as the trend from April and May 2023 is lower:
🛬 Prepare your return
Coming back from a break: what can you expect?
Get ready to dive into new opportunities as you rejoin the business scene.
As we’ve seen, during summer, the sourcing of agencies does not stop. At Sortlist we keep building connections to ensure that you continue to build new business stories upon your return from a summer break.
Here's what you can expect to find when you come back:
A list of identified companies looking for agencies like yours: Starting from August 2023, our new visibility module grants agencies access to a list of companies actively seeking services like theirs. Discover which companies in your area have been searching for your expertise during the summer, identify the decision-makers behind these companies and reach out to them directly.
Direct briefings waiting for you: Clients who have come across your profile in our directories and are interested in your services will have the ability to send you direct briefings. Once you're back, you'll have access to these projects, sent exclusively to you.
Make sure clients can find you, connect with you, and keep growing your new business prospects pipeline even if you are off.
😎 The perfect strategy
What should you do, as an agency?
By considering the data we've presented and leveraging the summer opportunities, agencies can make the most out of this seemingly calmer period.
Firstly, it's crucial to recognize that business opportunities still exist during the summer.
There are still:
Clients to meet,
Partnerships to forge,
And potential deals to close.
By maintaining a steady investment in marketing, your agency ensures its visibility, maximizing the chances of attracting new clients who are actively seeking solutions even during the summer months.
Make sure to configure your target markets so you can be visible to those potential new clients, even if you go on holidays. Sortlist will keep bringing visibility to your agency, allowing you to see on your reporting page which companies were looking for an agency like yours.
Additionally, the summer presents an excellent opportunity to gain a competitive advantage over industry rivals who may be slowing down their activities.
While they may be taking a back seat, your agency can proactively reach out to potential clients who may have more availability and fewer distractions during this period. By positioning your agency as an active and responsive partner, you can establish valuable connections and secure new business relationships that your competitors may have missed out on.
In conclusion, while the summer months may be perceived as a time for relaxation, they should not be overlooked as a prime time to maintain and even accelerate your agency's growth.