UK digital agencies are predicting year-on-year revenue growth of 30% for 2014, according to a new survey from Econsultancy.

This bullish forecast represents an average taken from 322 digital agencies, and compares to a figure of 26% when the survey was previously carried out in 2011.

Just 10% of agencies that responded to this year’s survey expect their business to remain flat, while around a quarter (24%) predict that their revenue will grow by 50% or more.

The findings come from Econsultancy’s fifth Digital Agency Rate Card Survey, which gives an insight into what UK digital agencies charge for different types of skills and levels of seniority, and investigates how and why rates may vary, for example by size of company.

What is your projected year-on-year growth for 2014?

The strong revenue growth predicted in the survey is supported by findings from Econsultancy’s 2014 Marketing Budgets Report, which shows that almost three-quarters (71%) of client-side marketers plan to increase their digital marketing spend in 2014.

Business development

If these growth predictions are to come true then it will obviously require a lot of emphasis on business development.

The report shows that the vast majority of agencies surveyed (86%) consider recommendations and referrals to be among the most effective methods of securing new clients, with is the same result as we saw in 2011 (+1%).

After recommendations/referrals the next best methods for business development are speaking at events (35%) or offline networking (34%), so perhaps it’s time you considered heading along to one of Econsultancy’s events this year, such as Future of Digital Marketing or The Festival of Marketing.

SEO and content marketing are also popular methods of attracting new business (25%), while online display (1%) and print advertising (0%) are seen to be the least effective.

What are the most effective business development methods or ways of getting new clients?