Choosing the right digital marketing agency for your business can be tricky and difficult. Here are some important tips that can help you find and choose the best digital marketing partner.
How to Choose the Right Digital Marketing Agency: 10 Proven Steps
If you are trying to grow your business, digital marketing can help you with that, with the increasing popularity and spread of the Internet in the world, it is likely that you need to be present online and benefit from it.
Stepping into the world of digital marketing is a tough task for most business owners, especially if your business has been based on traditional marketing only so far, so you need a digital partner i.e. a trusted digital marketing agency to manage and accelerate your online business growth.
It is a big decision to move quickly to get some outside help, but its benefits cannot be denied. There are many reasons why you should consider hiring a digital marketing agency. This will give you and your team time to focus on other projects. The agency is sure to have the experience and skills to manage marketing campaigns, which your team may not have.
Understanding, Strategy, Support, Interpretation, Proximity, Availability, Reports, Optimization are some of the essential key points on which you should survey the digital marketing agencies whose offers you are interested in.
Although some agencies can completely transform your business and generate a lot of revenue, others may not meet your expectations, and may not be qualified, or may not have a sufficiently qualified team to support your business.
So there are several things that must be present in the agency you intend to contract with, to determine whether the partnership will be beneficial to both parties or not?
However, I know a few things that can simplify the decision-making process and help you choose the best digital marketing agency. So, Let’s get started!
What Do You Need to Know Before Hiring a Digital Marketing Agency?
If you want to hire a digital marketing agency to boost your business presence online, you need to know your market and target audience and test a few things about your company first. Because the digital world is completely different, the pros and cons spread here at an unimaginable speed, so you must first check your capabilities and know your limits well.
Remember that the first and main factor that will help you in searching for the right agency for your business is knowing what you want to achieve through a digital marketing agency.
Make sure your organizational structure is ready for increased growth and demand and you have an excellent product that is ready to compete.
Here are some important things you need to know before hiring a digital marketing agency, including:
- Why do you want to hire a digital marketing agency?
- How large is your business and how long have you been in this field?
- What marketing strategy does your agency specialize in?
- Do you have good customer service?
- Do you have a complete competitive analysis?
- Has your product been thoroughly tested?
- Do you have positive reviews and testimonials for people who have benefited from it?
- How does the agency handle communication and collaboration?
- Does the marketing agency team fit your company’s personality?
- Who are some of the agency’s previous clients?
The best way to find out if a digital marketing agency is right for you or not is to ask as many questions related to your business as possible. Don’t hesitate to ask any question that you think you need to know the answer to, set everything up first, to ensure the success of your marketing efforts, in the end, you will be the only winner or loser.
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10 Proven Steps to Choosing the Right Digital Marketing Agency for Your Business
It is easy to make the decision to hire a digital marketing agency, but the hard part is deciding which digital agency to hire.
Today, anyone with an internet connection can create a website and start providing services as an entrepreneur.
There are so many unreliable marketing agencies out there that can fool you. There are only a few agencies that are reliable and authentic. This makes it very difficult to choose the right agency.
Here are 10 important points you must know in order to hire the right digital marketing agency for your business.
1. Define Your Goals and Priorities
It is essential to determine what you need before you start looking for a marketing agency to contract with.
Every business is different, as is every digital marketing agency. A social media marketing agency will have a very different skill set than an SEO agency, as well as a full-service agency.
Digital marketing agencies usually specialize in one or two areas. Although many of them are “full-service”, they usually prefer projects that fall under their specialty.
So the first step in choosing the right digital marketing agency is to understand your goals and what you hope to achieve by working with them.
Evaluate your needs well, because when it comes to digital marketing, both of you should be on the same page, so as not to waste your time and money.
It might be easier to break this down into outputs, the goals of those outputs, and the result you hope to achieve. Knowing these things helps you get an idea of what you want to get out of the project.
The more consistent your sales and marketing relationships are, the more successful your marketing campaigns will be.
That’s why it’s important that your goals fit your agency right from the start, once you have a clear idea of what you need from the agency, it will be easy for you to choose the right agency.
2. Determine Your Budget
The budget is often a source of contention in most choices. The same goes for the choice of a digital marketing agency. You often wonder if you have a reasonable budget to carry out your projects. Indeed, when it comes to web design and development, you have to rely on 3 factors to set your price.
Time is the first factor. The more urgent it is, the more expensive it is. Also, if there are a lot of functions, it takes even more time. For this, you have to pay more. Those who wish to invest less will benefit from a poorly done job. Functions also influence the cost of a budget for a digital marketing agency. If the customer is demanding, then it may take longer, and therefore cost much more.
In short, it’s not a good thing to choose a digital marketing agency directly without knowing exactly what your own goals are. This is first of all a waste of time, and then generates frustrations.
Therefore, you should set your budget according to your needs. Remember that even if you spend a lot of money on your marketing, your business will never grow if your service or product is not good enough.
3. Find the Best Marketing Agency
When you find the right digital marketing agency for your company, everything flows. This leads to the emergence of good ideas, good jobs, and the achievement of set goals.
A digital marketing agency should be an extension of your own company. And you won’t find out by just reviewing the jobs they have done or the clients they have. Rather, it is necessary for you to meet the responsible people so that you can strategically evaluate if they have values, a way of thinking and a way of working similar to your company.
The agency must be able to empathize with the needs of its target audience. Therefore, look for marketing agencies that seek to know your users before making any decisions.
If you want a good digital strategy, look for an agency that is more specialized in digital work. Don’t judge an agency just because it has a lot of popularity or has received many awards for making television commercials, otherwise, you’ll probably pay more and not get the results you expect.
Digital marketing is directly dependent on technology and that makes it change quite quickly. So if digital marketing is flexible, your agency should be too.
Most agency websites look the same. Most inbound marketing actions look alike. Therefore, look for a digital marketing agency that is creative and that can offer various functions that help you stand out from the crowd.
4. Prefer an Agency with Effective Strategies
Some of the best marketing agencies have only three employees, and some have three hundred employees.
A small agency can give you direct access to the people running your campaigns and a more hands-on approach.
On the flip side, an agency with three to four employees working on your campaign is unlikely to have the skill set that a larger agency can offer you.
An agency with hundreds of employees will be able to offer you many services, from video to web development and everything in between. So take these points into consideration when choosing a digital marketing agency for your business.
This does not mean that you should not consider small agencies, even if a small agency does not offer you specialized services such as video creation and editing services, it is likely to offer you basic services such as SEO or content creation and may be more specialized and skilled.
In fact, a 2018 WordStream study of digital marketing agencies found that most agencies offer about seven primary digital marketing services, so the benefits of smaller agencies can’t be totally denied:
Keep in mind that the larger the agency, the less likely you are to gain control over every aspect of your campaign.
Big agencies will take over and handle everything for you, that’s a good thing sometimes (they take control and make decisions without consulting your team), but on the other hand, sometimes it may not be right for your business.
Both options have many advantages and some disadvantages, it just depends on your needs and the requirements of your business, as well as your budget.
So prefer a digital agency that has effective marketing strategies, no matter what its size and how many people it has hired.
5. Check Agency’s Previous Records
Look for an agency that has good experience in your field. If you find an agency that has experience in your field, find out if it has had success with a goal similar to yours.
For example, if you are looking for a software as a service (SaaS) company to launch a new product for business-to-business (B2B) clients, check, do previous clients give positive feedback? Does it align with your own needs? Has the agency run a similar campaign in the past? If so, what results were achieved? Are the business metrics measured by the amount of “likes” the agency can get on social media, or does it measure actual sales conversions? And does it have flexibility in dealing?
These factors will make a huge difference in whether or not an agency will deliver the results you are looking for.
There are a lot of unreliable marketing agencies out there that can promise you incredible results at first, but as you start working with them, they don’t live up to their word.
If there is a marketing agency that promises results that no one else can deliver, ask them to prove this by creating the golden strategy that separates them from other agencies.
The end game of most marketing campaigns is gaining new clients, no agency should promise to boost specific numbers of your pre-target clients, There are a lot of variables that can affect numbers (for example, how many sales your business reaches), even the most successful marketing campaigns won’t necessarily bring in a large number of new customers, so watch out for these fake promises.
Good customer experience will be a powerful factor in accelerating the success of your marketing campaign. Having a strong background in your field means that the agency can not only help you create successful marketing campaigns, but also steer you away from ideas that won’t bring results.
6. Check the Agency is Certified or Not
You should assess that the agency has official certifications and the recognition of entities such as Google or Microsoft. But, of course, the first thing to evaluate when choosing one agency or another is the starting point of the company.
Many companies still do not operate on the internet today, so they should look for an agency that not only provides online marketing services, but also web design. Even many companies find that several of their problems stem from their web design and usability. Furthermore, in some cases, the lack of results in the online channel can lead to a poor design, not very usable, or poorly optimized for conversion.
Therefore, it is essential to trust a team of experts capable of developing a good, perfectly optimized website, to achieve online results.
The fundamental thing when opting for your services over those of another agency is that you have a team of digital specialists and that you understand perfectly what each client needs to make their online recruitment profitable.
In short, the agency you choose must be able to bring your business closer to your current and potential clients, making your website more attractive, which will undoubtedly increase your business sales.
7. Find out What Tools Agencies Use
If you want to hire a digital marketing agency, you need to know what tools the agency uses, as it is important to measure performance, so you need to make sure that the agency uses the right tools to make the experience worthwhile.
For example, If you use a digital marketing agency to do email marketing campaigns, “Does it use tools like MailChimp or Campaign Monitor? If it’s an SEO agency, does it use tools like Ahrefs or SEMrush to monitor trending keywords?
You also need to know the communication tools, how will the agency keep you up to date with your marketing campaigns? Some companies may prefer Gmail, but there are also some effective tools that are designed to keep communication between clients and team members in a better, easier, and more productive way.
These points may seem like unnecessary details, but they can help you distinguish between average agencies no matter how popular they are.. Don’t let the glamorous names fool you.
8. Analyze the Transparency and Effectiveness of the Report
Reporting is essential to success in the relationship between a company and a digital marketing agency. A track record of solid reporting can show how transparent an agency is with its clients.
Full transparency should be the first criterion when choosing the right digital agency for your business, regarding all the above points and more.
Lack of transparency is the alarm of danger you cannot ignore, check the agency’s website, find an address for where the company is located? Is there a list of existing clients? If you don’t find it then this agency is probably not worth your time.
In general, if an agency seems to be hiding something, there is probably something wrong, simply don’t be fooled by agencies that make big promises at cheap rates.
The most important thing you need to consider is that everyone stresses the importance of analysis from a strategic point of view and that they have the ability to prove return on investment, but in reality, only a few of them have the ability to measure performance. Every agency makes big promises first and then fails to report the truth if one of its campaigns fails or goes sour.
Although every agency reports to its clients differently, you should always stay in the middle of the loop. A good agency will give you a baseline report, and then tailor it to whatever goal you’re trying to achieve.
If you don’t have the time to go around and research about that on your own, ask the agency to answer any questions you have, if they hesitate or can’t prove it with stats or examples, this is a warning sign that they may not be able to provide for your business as well.
Therefore, if you want to increase engagement and awareness of your brand, you need to know exactly how the agency will measure success, and what metrics they use to demonstrate that campaigns are performing well or in need of improvement.
9. Determine Price Reasonableness and Fairness
When searching for a digital marketing agency, a lower price doesn’t necessarily mean you’re in front of a better deal. If the agency sets a price too low, you should dig deeper and learn about their operations more thoroughly than others, ask them why their prices are so low, and how they managed to keep it so low while still providing good service.
Think of it from an agency’s point of view, if their prices are too low, will they offer the same quality, or will they also make discounts on their services to make up the difference?
This doesn’t mean that you need to pay a higher amount of money for the marketing agency, but chances are that the higher-priced marketing agencies are more willing to dedicate more resources to your campaign, mainly because you paid them for it.
Agencies that charge higher rates tend to treat their clients more generously because they have the budget to do so.
Before you start questioning whether or not your digital marketing efforts are worth investing a significant amount in, think about the ROI you could receive from a successful marketing campaign.
10. Submit a Marketing Request for Proposal (RFP)
Once you have selected the digital agencies that you are willing to continue with, contact the company to express your interest.
The next step is to send a “request for proposal” (RFP). An RFP allows you to collect information from multiple companies and select the company that best meets your criteria, both in terms of skill and budget. This should make it clear which agency works best for your business and which digital marketing contract you should sign.
If you want to see what the company can accomplish for you, consider asking them to complete a task for your business. This allows you to find out what they are capable of and if their clients’ results are consistently good, as they may suggest on their website.
Ask them to create a digital PR campaign or content marketing post for your business, and ask them to come up with some ideas to present to you.
If you’ve been happy with everyone so far, it’s time to have a meeting with the digital agency. This is a good way to get to know the team and an opportunity to resolve any issues with the team before signing any contracts.
I think you must have understood by now how to evaluate digital marketing agencies and choose the most suitable one for your business. Let’s start working with a digital marketing agency to boost your presence in the online market.
If you have any other considerations to rely on while choosing a digital marketing agency before hiring it, you can ask about them in the comment section.