If you’ve decided that in-house marketing isn’t right for your business or you need to supplement your current marketing efforts, then it’s time to start looking for the best digital marketing company to meet your needs.
Hiring a marketing agency can take a lot of time, and the best agencies aren’t cheap. Since the process will take up so much of your resources (time AND money), you should do everything you can to make sure you get it right the first time.
To help you start your search, I talked to successful business leaders who recently finished their own digital marketing company search. I hope their advice helps you find the perfect digital marketing agency for your business.
4 Tips to Help You Find the Best Digital Marketing Company
David Jackson, CEO of Fullstack Labs, was looking for an agency to manage their SEO and PPC. Instead of hiring one agency to handle both, they looked for the best digital marketing company in each area separately.
They started their search on Google, searching for specific types of agencies. “For instance, instead of ‘SEO consultant’, we looked for ‘software SEO consulting,’ and ‘SEO for service companies,'” David said.
They chose three or four agencies for each specialty and requested proposals.
1. Ask to See Work Samples
Based on that experience, David offers two tips to other businesses looking for a digital marketing agency.
Don’t take their word for it! And don’t assume that their work is up to snuff just because they have a fancy website. Ask for examples from the companies you’re considering.
“We received a proposal from one of the largest SEO agencies in the country that carried a hefty price tag. Their proposal looked good, and we were considering making the sizeable investment,” David told me. “But when we asked to see examples of the content that they create for clients, the examples they sent over were subpar at best.”
Subpar at best? How bad could it have been? Pretty bad:
“Lots of fluff pieces with no meaningful message, and lots of typos and grammatical mistakes. It was surprisingly bad.”
2. Make Sure the Examples Are Relevant
David’s second piece of advice is this:
When you’re requesting samples of a digital marketing companies work, make sure you ask for samples relevant to your industry.
“I’ve found that a lot of ‘experts’ like to speak in generalities and use examples of companies that are unrelated to mine,” Matthew said. “For example, in my case, I don’t want to hear about how you helped a local dentist improve their Google rankings.”
3. Who’s on Your Team?
Make sure you find out exactly who is going to be working on your account.
As David says, “You might be talking to an impressive, well known agency with a great reputation. But at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is the caliber of the professionals that are staffed on your project.
“One of the AdWords agencies we were speaking with looked good, but when we asked who would be on our project, we found out they intended to staff junior people with less than two years of experience. The price was far too high for junior professionals, so we passed on that proposal.”
4. Stay on Top of Things
You need to find someone who knows your industry, but don’t trust them to know everything. It’s your business, no one knows it better than you.
Paul Gibson, owner of Reading 123, recommends thinking of your agency as a partner:
“You must be willing to partner with them and review the work at all times to maximize its effectiveness. Try to approach marketing with a test and learn behavior, rather than thinking of instant ROI.”
5. Do They Understand Your Business?
An agency can do a great job without being an expert in your industry, but if they don’t seem to comprehend important aspects of your business no matter how many times you explain them, that ought to raise a big, red flag.
In my experience, I’ve found that if an agency who can’t wrap their head around your product when getting the job depends on it, they’re probably not going to understand it any better once they pocket your money.
Finding the right digital marketing agency isn’t easy, but I hope these tips help you find the perfect agency for your needs.
The search process may take quite some time. For every good agency, there are a dozen bad experiences waiting to happen. Think about everything that could go wrong before you pull the trigger on an agency you’re not sure about.
Don’t settle for less than the best!