The Do’s And Don’t’s Of Picking The Right Digital Marketing Agency For Your Business

June 21, 2017 Super User
Digital marketing agency

DO make a list of your needs

First things first, you need to ask yourself what you want. Before you even start searching for a digital marketing agency, you and your team should get together and make a list of what you expect from a digital marketing strategy.

Do you want to improve your presence on social media? Then you need a company with experience in social media management. Does your company want to focus on online advertising and content marketing? Then you should narrow your search to companies that specialize in these niches. Are you looking for help with public relations, analytics, or demographics research? Then that’s the kind of agency that you should be searching for.

Spend as much time as you need with your team brainstorming a list of your needs and expectations. It will help narrow your search for the right agency. Later, it will also help you articulate your expectations to your chosen agency as you craft a digital marketing strategy.

DO research their strengths and weaknesses

Now that you’ve identified your needs, you’re ready to start searching. Compile a second list of agencies that check most if not all the boxes on your list of needs and expectations. Now dissect each agency on this list. What are their strengths and weaknesses? What makes them different from other agencies?

You’ll also want to look into their track record. Research the company’s history, their previous clients, and current projects. For example, if you’re looking for an SEO expert, then identify agencies that have launched successful SEO campaigns for their clients.

When you meet with representatives of each agency, ask for a portfolio of their services. Ask for sample reports and sample strategies. Then determine how well these services and strategies apply to your unique situation. Do they meet all your needs? How will the agency help you overcome challenges or setbacks?

DO check out their website and evaluate their brand

Looking at the website is one way of getting to know an agency before, well, getting to know an agency. It can separate the cream of the crop from the rest of the crowd. Apart from being a good indicator of an agency’s credibility and experience, a website can also determine how well the agency will market your brand. Read their customers reviews. Navigate their site. Check out their multimedia. A website with a professional look that can effectively promote its own products conveys more trustworthiness than a subpar counterpart.

Apart from the website, you also want to check out the agency’s blog and social media. Look for blogs that are frequently updated with relevant, well-written, original content. The agency’s social media can also indicate its digital marketing prowess. How often are these posts shared and liked? How does the agency engage and interact with their customers? An agency with a strong online reach may have the expertise and experience to help with your own social media campaigns.

DON’T just focus on name, ranking or prestige

This isn’t to say that big-name digital marketing agencies can’t provide the services you’re looking for. But for smaller businesses or those on a tight budget, these agencies might be out of reach. Prestige isn’t everything. Your business can still enjoy highly successful digital marketing campaigns from less widely known agencies. What truly matters is their experience, and how well that experience translates into helping your business.

Additionally, don’t place too much stock on SEO rankings. While this can serve as a good indicator of the agency’s digital marketing abilities, you shouldn’t hold these rankings against a relatively young but otherwise capable agency. If you do search up agencies on Google, use relevant keywords. Remember to add the name of the city the agency is located. This can help you measure the effectiveness of the agency with local SEO.

DON’T be afraid to disagree – maintain an open dialogue

Teamwork can make or break a partnership. An important facet of this is how your team and the agency deals with disagreements. Don’t be afraid to be blunt when discussing what you need or expect. You want a digital marketing agency that can keep up with you, match your expectations, and exceed them.

Disagreements aren’t necessarily a bad thing – they can be a way to test agencies, talk out differences, and brainstorm new approaches. The most important thing is to maintain an open and honest dialogue between your team and the agency. Be wary of agencies that dismiss your concerns or refuse to reach a compromise. This can indicate that they are not prioritizing the interests of your business. Find agencies willing to listen and communicate with you – these are the ones you can form long, rewarding partnerships with.

DON’T cut corners if you want good results

You want the most bang for your buck – and that means no cutting corners. No matter how tight your budget is, the reality is that if you want good results, you need to be willing to shell out the cash. An agency with low prices probably offers cheap quality services, and you’ll have ended up wasting money on subpar results. That’s not what you’re looking for.

Try and be flexible with your budget. When negotiating a fee, don’t settle on a number – have a range that you would be comfortable with paying. This can open more doors to agencies that can deliver the great results you want.

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