Onboarding process checklist for Marketing Agencies

Jan 25, 2021
Post Masthead

So you’ve just closed that next big client, and now you’re faced with onboarding them in order to kick-start a great working relationship.

When you're onboarding new clients or customers, you want to reinforce their feeling that they have made the right choice in you as their agency. This will include addressing any questions, gathering the required information, and preparing so the project can begin as quickly and smoothly as possible.

A client onboarding checklist helps agencies make sure they are covering all the necessary steps to prepare for onboarding a new client and ensure they have the best experience possible.

By implementing a structured client onboarding process, the benefits include:

  1. Better customer relationships
  2. Greater commitment to your company
  3. Reduced stress
  4. Higher customer satisfaction
  5. Better retention (and associated cost savings)

Acquiring new customers is anywhere from 5 to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one. Frederick Reichheld, of Bain & Company (the inventor of the net promoter score), conducted research that shows increasing customer retention rates by 5% increases profits by 25% to 95%. However, it’s a well-established fact that 44% of companies have a greater focus on customer acquisition vs. only 18% that focus on retention.

Your client onboarding process will impact, either positively or negatively, your new client’s experience with your company, and will directly affect the metrics we mentioned above.

A quality client onboarding process checklist, like the one we’ve provided below, can save precious resources and onboard new clients in a fraction of the time.

So, let's get started and run through this client onboarding process checklist.

Client preparation

  • Record basic details for this client
  • Send contract and additional documents
  • Check signed documents have been received
  • Have an onboarding call with the client
  • Send welcome email
  • Send new client questionnaire
  • Request marketing and media resources from the client
  • Confirm marketing and media resources received

Setting the agenda

  • Research campaign ideas
  • Create marketing plan first draft
  • Approval: Marketing plan first draft
  • Schedule future calls
  • Update client's CRM and project management profile
  • Confirm questionnaire is complete

Project start

  • Brief the team and assign work
  • Inform client of project start

One week into the project

  • Have a follow-up call
  • Make changes based on follow-up call

Four weeks into the project

  • Have a second follow-up call
  • Make changes based on second follow-up call
  • Send a post-onboarding survey

Client Onboarding Best Practices

The onboarding process will vary depending on the type, size and needs of the customer. For instance, larger customers with a multi-year contract may have different onboarding experiences than one-off project customers because of their needs and expectations. However, there are general best practices to help create an effective program.

The Need for a Formal Plan

With so much riding on the success of each new customer, it is easy to see that effective onboarding is mission critical. Surprisingly, however, not all companies have a formal client onboarding plan in place. Failure to formalize an onboarding process for your organization can spell disaster.

Laying a Strong Foundation

Successful client onboarding begins even before the sales lead, proposal, and closing process. Your website may be the first way a potential customer interacts with your organization by broadcasting your company brand and message.

Onboarding as a Part of Company Culture

The client onboarding process is continual, as your customers embrace your services, processes, and even your company culture. Client onboarding, then, becomes a foundational piece of your overall business strategy.

Begin before the starting day

Consider lead generation and your sales process as part of the onboarding process, and make sure that customer questions are answered early and often. Even company branding can influence onboarding by presenting sales collateral with a consistent message about what the company represents and the kind of service experience they can expect.


Measure the customer’s onboarding experience by getting their feedback and assessing the results during the process. This will help you determine the success of your onboarding process so that adjustments can be made as needed.

Model your Client Onboarding Process in Rindle

Rindle is a no-code business process management platform that empowers teams to automate workflows and make processes error-free. We help non-technical people deploy their own workflows, so teams are productive and companies can accelerate digital transformation.

Rindle enables you to enhance your client onboarding experience and scale your processes without increasing staff. Customize it for your needs, automate repetitive steps and focus on what matters: your customers.

  • Ensure a consistent onboarding experience for every new customer
  • Track each new customer’s progress
  • Save valuable time to invest in customer relationships

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Brian Faust

Co-founder of Rindle who loves to build great products, cook, and west coast swing dance.

Schedule a demo and get started with Rindle today.