What to look for when hiring a digital marketing agency
One of the most important aspects of your overall marketing strategy should be focused on digital. As more and more consumers are shopping or researching online, using mobile for everything, having a digital presence is of the utmost importance. And if you do have a digital presence, but it is outdated, it may be time to look at a website redesign and hire digital marketing agency. So where do you start?
As businesses are growing or trying to grow their revenue, working with a digital marketing agency could make all the difference in the world. Even if you have a marketing team, it might make sense to work with a digital agency that can bring more expertise and experience to the table.
Finding the right agency to deliver your brand narrative is mission critical if you want to grow the business. When you are choosing to work with a Digital Agency, it is important to identify an agency based on certain criteria that you and your marketing team have determined as being essential. These may be different for each business, but we want to focus on the elements that will deliver success when reviewing various agencies you want to work with.
1. Define Your Goals and Scope of Work
First, start with your company goals. Have you defined what those goals are? What are you trying to achieve? What are the current pain points that need to be addressed? What are you expecting to achieve by working with a digital agency? How are you measuring this success?
Secondly, are you looking to increase brand awareness, hit quarterly and yearly sales projections, or gain more market share?
Identify the scope of work that you would like to bring to the agency. This will help you identify and target the right type of agency and the work that they specialize in. If you are looking to redesign your website, does the agency specialize in this or something else?
2. Look for a Partner, not just an Agency
Choosing the right marketing partner to tell your brand’s story is super critical. Working with an agency that embodies the philosophy and methodology of your own business is a very good sign that it is the right fit. Compare their portfolio with other agencies you are reviewing. Do they work within your industry?
Are they looking for a partner as well? Do they approach their work with passion and precision? What do their clients say about them? Are they willing to share their references with you? Look at the big picture. If this is an agency you can see your business continuing to work with in the future, then you are on the right track.
3. Establish a Budget
We have seen time and time again, organizations that have a laundry list of items that they would like to address but have no clue on the cost of the project, the amount of hours it will take to execute the project as well as any other additional customizations that may be required to bring your vision to life.
What type of budget have you allocated for your project? More often than not, your agency may have a minimum project cost that they require in order to take on your project. Be honest and upfront about your budget in order for your agency to be able to properly manage the project expectations.
4. What is the size of Agency?
Something that is extremely important to note. There are agencies out there that have teams and members that specialize in certain disciplines, like brand strategy or engineering for example. There are other agencies that are a one or two man shop and are only equipped to handle simple, cookie-cutter design work. You get what you pay for and the completed projects often tell the tale.
When reviewing an agency and its pricing it’s important to remember that there will be a team of specialists dedicated to your project. Having multiple minds collaborating together to produce the work tends to result in a higher quality product than having one person solely working on it alone.
There are some agencies that are so big, that it is extremely difficult for a smaller client to get the attention and service they deserve. With any successful project, communication is the core element that cannot be ignored. You want to work with an agency that is communicating throughout the project process, not just delivering a completed website after a month or two without any consistent review. Working with an agency that is local and easy to communicate with makes a huge difference.
5. The Digital Marketing Proposal
When you are ready to start receiving digital marketing proposals from the agencies, it is important to understand the roadmap that the agency plans to take when they take on your project. Is it a one page proposal with just pricing on it? Or is it a comprehensive, multi-page document outlining the various stages like Discovery, Wireframing, Design and Development? Does the proposal contain a schedule and timeline for each of these phases?
A good agency will want to walk through the proposal in person so that you understand the scope of work the agency will assume. Does the digital marketing proposal address all of your initial pain points that you are your marketing team outlined in the beginning of the search?