The ‘Anti-Agency’ Approach: Embracing the Unconventional Path in IT Digital Marketing

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“I’m not for everyone.” This might not mean what you think. 

This statement resonates deeply with me as I reflect on my path in the digital marketing world, especially as a woman in the male-dominated field of B2B tech marketing. Let’s delve into how my experiences have shaped SET Consulting’s ethos – a testament to respect, partnership, and sustainable growth.

Let me take you on a journey through my decade-long career in digital marketing and how it shaped the core of SET Consulting, my ‘anti-agency’ approach to this dynamic industry.

The Agency Life: Lessons from the Ground Up

My career began in the trenches of digital marketing agencies.  My ideas were often overlooked, and I had to fight harder for the same recognition my male counterparts easily received. 

Picture this: burnt-out teams, a dozen accounts to juggle simultaneously, and a mix of inexperienced and wise colleagues. I’ve heard advice that made me cringe and witnessed client relationships that were less than ideal. 

I was handed accounts that raised more questions than they answered. Yet, despite all this, friends and family would say, “Hey, it’s a paycheck.”

But for me, it was more than that. 

Transforming Adversity into Strength

These challenges, rather than disheartening me, ignited a fire. They taught me resilience and gave me a clear vision of what I didn’t want in my professional life. I vowed to create a space where respect and equality were ideals and everyday realities.

No Regrets: A Path to Self-Discovery

This journey was invaluable. It showed me who I didn’t want to be and, more importantly, who I did. The entrepreneurial spirit was not just a part of me; it was me in every sense. As I embarked on the journey to establish SET Consulting, I wasn’t just building a business but laying the foundation of a philosophy.

Building a Collective, Not Just a Team

At SET Consulting, we’re doing things differently. We’re building a collective of consultants – talented, driven individuals treated as equals, not burnt-out cogs in a machine. Gone are the days of being yelled at like children, a demeaning experience I encountered in one of my first agency jobs.

A Culture of Respect and Partnership

Respect is the cornerstone of our company philosophy. We treat each other and our clients as partners. In our world, there’s no hierarchy where one’s voice matters more than another’s. We’re all entrepreneurs, each bringing our unique strengths to the table, committed to driving sustainable success for our clients.

SET Consulting: The Anti-Agency Model

1. Strategic ‘Why’

   Every strategy we develop at SET Consulting has a purposeful ‘why’ behind it. We believe in implementing tactics and ensuring you fully understand the rationale behind each decision.

This approach means that our strategies are not just about achieving short-term goals; they align with your long-term vision and objectives. By grasping the ‘why’, you actively participate in the strategy, leading to more meaningful and effective outcomes.

2. Empathy over Automation

   In a world increasingly dominated by automation, we choose empathy. From addressing your Google Analytics queries to celebrating your personal achievements, we invest time and genuine interest in every aspect of our relationship.

This human-centric approach ensures that while we leverage technology for efficiency, the heart of our interactions remains deeply personal and empathetic, fostering a stronger and more connected working relationship.

3. Genuine Care

   At SET Consulting, your story is integral to our strategy. We are genuinely interested in understanding your journey, your challenges, and what your day-to-day life looks like.

This level of care allows us to create strategies that are not just technically sound but resonate with you personally. It’s not just business for us; it’s about building a relationship grounded in understanding and mutual respect.

4. Mutual Growth

   We firmly believe in the power of mutual growth. Our role extends beyond just being consultants; we are partners in learning.

We help you grow your online presence by sharing our knowledge and expertise. Simultaneously, we remain open to learning from your experiences and insights. This two-way street of knowledge and growth fosters a dynamic and enriching relationship for both of us.

5. Partnership, Not Just Service

   When you work with SET Consulting, you gain a partner, not just a service provider. We integrate ourselves as an extension of your team, understanding your culture, goals, and challenges as if they were our own. This partnership approach allows us to work seamlessly with you, ensuring our strategies perfectly align with your business’s ethos and objectives.

6. Exclusive Focus

   You are more than just a number to us. We consciously choose to work with only a select few clients at a time. This exclusivity allows us to dedicate the time and attention each client deserves. With SET Consulting, you can be assured of personalized attention, where your business isn’t just another account but a priority.

7. Celebrating Women in Tech

   We actively celebrate and support the incredible women in the tech industry. Recognizing the challenges and hurdles women face in this field, we make it a point to highlight their achievements, support their growth, and provide a platform for their voices.

This commitment is not just about equality; it’s about enriching the industry with diverse perspectives and skills.

Through these principles, SET Consulting strives to redefine the norms of digital marketing consultancy, focusing on meaningful relationships, mutual growth, and deep respect for our client’s individual stories and successes.

Beyond Traditional SEO Agencies

In my journey through the dynamic world of digital marketing, I’ve worked with numerous traditional SEO agencies. These agencies’ structured approaches and vast client rosters have been invaluable learning grounds. 

I’ve gleaned insights from experienced professionals and have been part of strategies spanning various industries. The relationships forged, and the experiences gained in these settings have been instrumental in shaping my professional ethos.

Seeking Deeper Engagement in B2B Digital Marketing

However, as my career progressed, I yearned for something more profound than the conventional agency model could offer. 

Traditional agencies, focusing on scaling client numbers and often formulaic approaches to SEO, sometimes miss out on the deeper, more nuanced aspects of client relationships and tailor-made strategy development. 

A certain impersonality comes with the territory – a byproduct of handling a vast array of accounts, each with differing degrees of engagement and customization.

Personalized B2B Marketing Strategies: The Anti-Agency Approach

This realization led me to envision an alternative – an ‘anti-agency’ model – where the focus shifts from quantity to quality, from broad-stroke strategies to bespoke solutions, and transactional relationships to meaningful partnerships. 

At SET Consulting, we are not just about climbing the SEO rankings; we are about understanding each client’s unique story, specific challenges, and aspirations.

In this model, every client interaction is an opportunity to delve deeper to understand the business needs and the people behind the business. It’s about building a relationship that transcends the typical client-vendor dynamic. 

This approach allows us to craft strategies that are not only effective but also resonate on a personal level with our clients.

Crafting Tailor-Made Digital Marketing Solutions for B2B Clients

Moreover, our anti-agency stance is about breaking away from the conventional ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach. We recognize that each business is unique, and so are its market, challenges, and goals. 

Our strategies are, therefore, customized and built from the ground up to align with each client’s specific objectives. This bespoke approach ensures that our clients receive SEO services and a comprehensive, tailor-made digital marketing strategy that truly reflects their brand and business ethos.

In essence, moving beyond traditional SEO agencies is about creating a space where business is done differently – with empathy, understanding, and a genuine commitment to the success of our clients.

 It’s about building not just a consultancy but a community of like-minded individuals and businesses striving for excellence in a sustainable, respectful, and engaging way.

An Invitation to Like-Minded Tech Providers

Let’s talk if you’re in IT, security, software, or any tech-enabled service and yearn for a partnership that transcends traditional boundaries. I’m not for everyone, but if this resonates with you, you might be the one for SET Consulting.

With over a decade of expertise in content marketing strategy for B2B tech companies and eCommerce consumer brands, Stephanie is a seasoned professional in the world of SEO Digital Marketing. A thought leader on LinkedIn, she shares insights on SEO and Content Best Practices for B2B audiences. Stephanie is passionate about digital transformation, entrepreneurship, and breaking barriers. Her hobbies include exploring new subjects, launching businesses, and discussing topics like real estate and fashion. Ambitious and driven, she is on a journey to become a self-made millionaire, embodying the spirit of innovation and empowerment.

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