Client Tales: Venture Harbour on the Benefits of Building Niches

Marketing is clearly Quote Roller’s bread and butter. We try to keep our niche just in the broader sales arena, but certainly marketing, especially online marketing, are the majority of our clients. What’s great about that is that we often feature advice from great marketeers, like today’s Client Tale Venture Harbour, who shares with us about how they created a niche market in film, music and games, and how their company continues to grow.

Marcus from Venture Harbour at Midem

Jennifer Riggins: Could you please briefly introduce yourself and tell us what your business
is about?

Marcus Taylor: I’m the founder of a digital marketing agency called Venture Harbour, who specialises in working with brands in the music, film, and game industries.

Jen: Why did you start it? What makes it unique?

Marcus: Although I’ve been consulting to entertainment companies for almost five years, Venture Harbour was not officially incorporated until November 2012. What’s unique about the company is that we’re very focused on a few specific niches. Most digital marketing agencies work with all kinds of clients, which is absolutely fine, but it means that you never master a specific niche. Because all of our clients are based in music, film, and game, we can invest a great amount of effort into building industry relationships in these niches, and carrying out extensive research on what does and doesn’t work. The result of our niche focus has meant that no “generic” agency can compete with us on service quality.

Jen: What do you love about being an entrepreneur?

Marcus: I love the challenges and the learning. Being an entrepreneur forces you to constantly be learning about things you wouldn’t normally choose to learn about. In high school you pick your subjects, but as an entrepreneur you’ll be learning about tax and accounting one day, sales the next, and marketing the day after. Ultimately, you become very well rounded and wise relatively quickly.

Venture Harbour AishaJen: How do you envision success?

Marcus: I would like Venture Harbour to be known as the best digital marketing solution for companies in music, film, and game. Success for me is seeing success for our clients. In two to three years, time I’d like to look over
our client portfolio and see that we’ve grown all of our clients’ businesses by more than what they’ve paid us – and more than what other agencies could achieve for the same level of investment. It’s cliche, but success for us is simply being the best at what we do.

Jen: How did you hear about Quote Roller? Why did you decide to try our app?

Marcus: I came across Quote Roller on Google – I tested a few options, and Quote Roller was the only option that looked appropriate for what we’re doing.

Jen: How does Quote Roller help your business?

Marcus: In a nutshell, it reduces the time we have to invest in writing proposals, while increasing the quality of them. We’ve seen a proposal acceptance rate increase from around 20 to 80 percent, which is a result of improved lead qualification, and using Quote Roller to write our proposals.

Jen: You mentioned lead qualification, a perennial hot topic for sales, tell us more!

Marcus: In terms of lead qualification:
  • Asking better questions. In particular “In terms of timeline, when did you want to go ahead?” – makes the client agree on a starting date, and then work backwards from. Also just asking questions that get you out of ‘happy land’ e.g. “What are the risks of this not going ahead?” and then addressing them.
  • Grading leads on three areas: money, authority, and desire. Do they have money? A lot of leads were coming in from companies with tiny budgets. Authority – am I sending this proposal to the decision maker? Desire – does the company have an inherent need for our service?
  • Being brutally honest – I often tell clients to go for the cheapest option. I also say great things about my competitors (they are great), and tell leads to go elsewhere if I think someone else would be a better fit. Most sales people say anything to keep leads happy, so authenticity and honesty seems to go a long way…

Jen: What would you tell your friends about Quote Roller?

Marcus: If you’re currently wasting hours (or days) writing proposals, give it a shot. It’s the most professional looking and customizable proposal creation software I came across, and the results speak for themselves.

Jen: Have you seen any winning rate increases? Any other delightful numbers?

Marcus: As mentioned, proposal acceptance has quadrupled. I’d estimate that time invested in writing proposals has halved, and time spent checking the copy has quartered because of the templates. As we get to learn more about some of the other nifty features, i’m sure all of these things will continue to improve.




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