What you should look out for when hiring a digital agency.
Digital marketing is a core component of any business's marketing mix, and there are various ways to employ effective strategies to reach your audience and grow your customer base. If you are looking to outsource and engage an agency, this is typically a costly exercise you need to get right from the get-go.
Getting solid results through this method can be arduous as the industry is saturated with half-baked and inefficient digital marketing agencies with varying levels of domain knowledge and expertise.
Maintaining your business's digital presence requires consistent hard work, which might be overwhelming for in-house marketing teams across some areas. These could be creating a high-converting marketing campaign, integrating result-driven SEO strategies and optimising social media ad conversion. In-house marketing teams sometimes face challenges such as time constraints and staff deficiencies which sometimes prevent them from achieving the best results.
Partnering with a digital marketing agency can assist you in delivering excellent business outcomes by employing proven strategies to reach out to your target audience and engage them with the necessary information about your brand.
The digital agency you'll hire depends on certain factors such as your business requirements, budget and the current level of expertise you have in-house. For instance, if you are planning to run social ad campaigns, but your in-house team is only experienced in Google Ads (paid search), you might consider hiring an agency that has social ad specialists who are in the tools day-in and day-out, rather than trying your luck. In essence, you must find an agency with a high degree of domain expertise, with core competencies and in-depth knowledge in certain areas that would be complementary to your in house team.
Also, you need to decide if you want a full-service agency that will reduce the number of stakeholders you need to manage, or engage a number of agencies that are domain experts in a specific field.
When looking to find a marketing agency, ensure they offer a combination of the following services and have the portfolio and client reputation to back it up:
When deciding whether to undertake your brand campaign with only your in-house marketing team or to outsource to a digital marketing agency, it is essential to ask and answer the following questions:
You might need to reconsider your decision if you can't answer these questions with 100% assurance.
In choosing the most suitable digital marketing agency, it is imperative to define your brand goals; you need to ask some pertinent questions such as:
An honest answer to these questions serves as pointers for what your business or brand represents and the image you want to present to your target audience in your marketing campaigns. This also guides you to hire the best digital marketing agency that aligns with your brand’s vision.
We are in an era of many acclaimed digital marketing agencies with minimal productivity. Researching and identifying the best marketing agency to project your values effectively and produce maximum results is essential. Find out whether they have experienced and specialised team members. Check out their “about us " page and look at their team members' LinkedIn profiles. Look at the years they've been in the industry, their speciality and how many businesses they've worked with. Are they running their own campaigns? Do they showcase recent client wins or provide good case studies that reinforce their expertise?
You can’t give what you do not have. While looking to find a digital marketing agency, checking out whether they have a solid online presence is wise. Take a sneak peek at their webpage and social media accounts. Find out whether they have captivating content, substantial social media following, and a high level of engagement. A digital marketing agency with little or no impact in the digital space will most likely not be able to reproduce the same for its clients.
It is essential that you interview the digital marketing agency you want to hire about their previous work that could highlight their experience and success stories or where applicable. Ask for case studies and seek permission to reach out to their previous clients. Undergoing these steps can make you decide whether you want to trust them enough to bring them on board.
While it can be tricky to provide fixed rates for many services, an agency should be able to infer and lean on previous projects and clients to gauge the pricing level. If the project scope remains the same, you shouldn’t expect an agency's final charges to exceed their initial quote. The only time an agency change of quote is allowed after finalising the contract details is when you request deliverables outside the original project's scope or retainer. Only choose an agency with transparent pricing with no hidden charges during and after project completion.
Integrity is vital in business, and it is crucial to identify marketing agencies that make unrealistic promises. Look out for case studies that seem too good to be true, and discuss with the agency how they achieved these results for clients. Digital marketing processes take time and consistency to manifest, so be wary of agencies that promise quick results.
Identifying whether a digital marketing agency possesses effective communication is essential to getting the most out of that agency. Pay attention to how and when they respond to emails and how interested they are in knowing about your business, the inner workings etc. This is important because you need a trustworthy team to provide up-to-date feedback.
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