Are you thinking of hiring a digital marketing agency?
If so, congratulations as this is great news and tells us that your business is growing and you would rather use your precious time specialising in your core expertise. Managing and staying on top of your marketing campaigns can be very time consuming and if you are not an expert in running these campaigns effectively then you can be wasting your valuable time, money and more importantly, it can distract your business growth.
Hiring a quality, results-oriented digital marketing agency can see your business grow quickly and save you a considerable amount of time.
The digital marketing space evolves regularly and staying abreast of all these changes is challenging to ensure you can take them into consideration with your digital marketing campaign strategies. This includes Google’s and Facebook’s new algorithm updates, Facebook advertising rules, backend software upgrades, new tools and features that come to market, website conversion tactics, learning from case studies and through experience.
The digital marketing industry moves fast; and realistically, if any business is growing or wants to see their business grow, the thought of bringing someone in house or outsourcing to an agency will be a decision most companies will be required to make at some point in time.
Finding the right agency or person to work with can bring your business amazing and fast revenue results. So here are some tips to help you look for that AMAZING agency or person to help your business propel and minimise disruptions with your business growth.
Your digital marketing agency should:
1. Act as a partner to your business.
Your digital marketing agency should understand your short term and long term goals, your profitability margins on your products or services, your general marketing plan for the business and your available budget for digital marketing in total and per month. Based on this information they will come up with a digital marketing strategy that compliments these goals and understandings to help you materialise the fastest return on investment.
2. Be keenly aware and interested in your client’s personas or avatars.
If your company has not established this, then your digital marketing agency should be creating this with you before your campaigns go live as they will need this valuable information to review any marketing scripts, choose appropriate images, headlines and voice in all messaging to enhance conversions.
3. Set performance metrics together.
I often see digital marketing agencies guarantee Google first page ranking results or not discuss performance metrics at all. While first page Google ranking guarantees sound promising, unfortunately, first page Google guarantees don’t always equate to leads or sales.
Many other variables affect the performance of your campaign such as your web design, the keywords chosen, your content and your business’s offer. Attempting to move forward with an agency that guarantees just rankings is a bit dangerous in my opinion as it doesn’t guarantee a return on investment and from experience and some of these types of arrangements or agreements can keep you locked into paying for a service that may not deliver results holding up cash flow and valuable time.
While most digital marketing agencies will not usually guarantee or promise exact sales figures, the really good ones will be frank about their expectations in the beginning of their discussions before entering into a formal arrangement and will have no hesitation in offering a break clause in the event the campaign is not working for them. A genuine digital marketing agency wants to see their clients succeed and is confident they are that company that will help them to do so.
4. Be transparent and provide reporting.
Understand the reporting you can expect to receive at least on a monthly basis and ensure it includes the performance metrics in which you are measuring and basing success such as web traffic per month, web traffic growth per month and or number of leads per month or lead growth per month.
Ensure your digital marketing agency holds themselves accountable for any drop in rankings or drop in conversions. While a drop in rankings or conversions may not be directly related to your digital marketing agency behaviour (sometimes your competitors can make changes that affect your rankings or Google updates their algorithm), your agency should be able to tell you what they will do to improve your results.
Define the things upfront you want transparency in including reviewing content before it is posted online, find out where your digital marketing agency wants to post your content (on which blogs or websites).
Some agencies don’t want to disclose this information because of the type of blogs they post content to or they may think it is their intellectual property. However, genuine digital marketing agencies do not have a problem disclosing this. If you care about your brand then you should find this out before you enter into an agreement with your new agency and if they agree to be transparent about this then this should also be stipulated in your agreement with them.
5. Introduce you to your account manager.
Meet with the person who will be working on your digital marketing campaigns before you move forward with any agency. Find out who will be executing your digital marketing strategy. So many agencies have either an assertive telesales team or a face-to-face sales team. These people are measured on their sales performance and are not incentivised to manage a client relationship once the sale has been made. In fact, you may not hear from them again unless you are having a problem with your account manager or not obtaining results. It is important to understand who will be working on your account and their level of experience and expertise.
Find out how many clients your account manager is managing per month. If they have more than 10 accounts find out what their rules are for engagement and communication with you.
From experience, it will be impossible to have a genuine relationship or have progressive communication and results when an account manager is juggling too many digital marketing campaigns. In this digital marketing age, you need someone who can respond and work in a timely manner and provide feedback to you regularly and is passionate about your company and brand, not someone who is going to be reactive and respond to your emails and requests on an ad hoc basis. A good digital marketing agency will drive and motivate their clients to get things done and move forward.
If you consider these five tips before you engage a new digital marketing agency then I’m certain your business will greatly benefit from this new relationship and your business will grow with a highly-effective digital marketing strategy, execution and good return on investment.