Agency business is tough. While it’s rewarding work, #agencylife can sometimes feel like being on an island of your own. That’s where our Agency Partner Program sets out to bridge the gap and make things a little easier.
During a recent visit to Sprout HQ, our partners were asked to describe their own experiences with the program—what they like, how it’s changed their business and how they feel as a Sprout Agency Partner.
Everything’s Better With a Partner
This is a fast-paced industry and keeping a finger on the pulse of the latest and greatest isn’t always effortless. But there’s power in partnership. Doing so enables agencies to reduce inefficiencies by leveraging resources and, with Sprout in the picture, full-suite access to enterprise-level social tools.
“[Partnership programs] are a great investment for your agency,” Jared DiVincent, Founder of SocialCompass Marketing, said. “It provides you with invaluable resources, keeps your team on the cutting edge of what’s happening in your industry and puts you on a platform to speak to that many more prospects.”
Having early access to Sprout’s newest product features and the ability to voice opinions on product development allows an agency to get to know the product inside and out. It helps not only our agency partners, but Sprout’s own team.
Lucas Vandenberg, Fifty & Five Managing Partner, thinks the biggest value of being a Sprout Agency Partner is in having that extra access.
“For us, giving additional feedback on new tools that are coming out is hugely valuable in understanding that the tool is really created and customized specifically for our needs,” Vandenberg said.
Being a part of a program like this gives agencies like Fifty & Five a model for scalable pricing, as well as access to a whole team at Sprout who can really understand the intricacies of the agency business model itself.
A Connected Community
The Agency Partner Program is about more than leveraging resources and beta-testing product enhancements. Partnering through a program like this boils down to growing together, leveraging one another’s experiences as a community and gaining insight into what others like you are doing in the industry. In short, it’s a relationship.
Spencer Smith, Co-Founder of AmpliPhi, explains how Sprout’s program has been immensely helpful to his agency in providing a built-in community of peers to exchange questions and share certain insights with.
“What the Sprout Agency Partner Program allows us to do is communicate with other people doing the same jobs as us and share best practices. We simply didn’t have that ability before.”
An open opportunity to interact and idea-share with other marketers like yourself is one community benefit, but Brooke Sellas, Founder and CEO of B Squared Media, feels it’s more the nurturing nature of the program that lends itself so well to creating a community.
“I can call [Sprout Social] on the phone and ask them how to do something for the 50th time and they’re not annoyed,” Sellas said. “They just honestly care about how we’re doing, where we’re going and solving things for us.”
But Sellas stresses that it’s not just about getting on the phone to talk product or roadmap.
“It’s also the camaraderie,” Sellas said. “Meeting other people, forming those relationships, getting to know what Sprout’s all about and really just forming that bond with your software partner, which I don’t know that very many people can say that about their tool.”
Expanding Your Network & Reach
It should come as no surprise that agencies are consumed with the marketing efforts of their clients. So much so that devoting time on their own marketing and business development can fall by the wayside.
Tools like Sprout Social’s Bambu—a communications and curation tool—has proven to be a convenient method for helping agency partners share their content and expand their reach through activating employees as marketing and recruiting assets.
DiVincent explains that before Bambu entered his agency’s world, the team was using multiple platforms to ensure that content was sent to exactly the right people.
“Bambu took care of everything that we were already doing, but in one seamless platform,” DiVincent said.
The platform has not only made sharing curated content easier, but has helped scale agency efforts as well.
“We have contributors within our clients’ team that contribute in the Bambu platform but we could also have our agency team members contribute, so it allows us to grow at a lot faster pace,” DiVincent said.
Building Your Business & Growing Your Agency
Fifty & Five’s Vandenberg explains that his agency has been opened up to new and great opportunities in the last year as a result of being a Sprout partner and building brand awareness as a vetted agency.
“One of the ways the program has helped us grow is by giving us access to new leads and new prospects,” Vandenberg said.
DiVincent feels similarly: “Saying that we’re an agency founding partner and a Sprout Social partner definitely helps our prospects and helps us gain more clients. It helps us pitch easier and it just builds that layer of trust that we couldn’t do on our own.”
The Agency Partner Program believes that partnerships are built on mutual, sustainable growth and it is Sprout’s goal to continually support that.
Sellas sums it up best: “Before joining the Agency Partner Program, I loved Sprout. After joining, I want to marry Sprout.”