How to Choose Marketing Agency
A good marketing agency can attract new customers, build loyal relationships with them and thereby increase sales, bad - at best, will waste your money. Our article on how to distinguish the first from the second: tips, criteria and nuances that should be considered when searching and choosing a marketing agency.
At the same time, the clearer and more detailed you write down the goals, the more productive the process of communication with marketing companies will be.
Types of Marketing Agencies. Another advantage of clearly defined goals will be an understanding of which marketing agency you need. So, if you are the owner of an online store or a digital startup, then you most likely need a company specializing in integrated promotion on the Internet.
If you want to increase the popularity of a business page on social networks, then you need SMM services. Other tools are needed for promotion outside the Internet: radio, television, print media and magazines, outdoor advertising, banners, flyers, etc.
Usually agencies specialize in a certain direction and only the largest players provide comprehensive promotion services at all possible sites. This is important, as some studies say that full-service companies offer the best value for money. However, there is another opinion: narrow specialization allows for greater efficiency in the chosen direction.
In any case, each option has its pros and cons:
There are more subtle differences:
Referral Recommendations. The recommendations of colleagues, partners, friends and acquaintances can also help find a good marketing agency, but provided that their words do not have personal gain or direct competition. Ask about the companies with which your colleagues or acquaintances have worked and achieved their goals.
Company Web Listings. There are many sites on the Internet where various companies offer their services. Advertising services are presented on AgencyList, GoodFirms, Clutch, as well as on Craigslist, OLX and other bulletin boards. Often at such sites there is a brief description of the company, contacts, reviews about working with the company and user ratings.
Agency Ratings. There are many organizations that conduct independent research of marketing agencies every year. Their results are presented on sites such as The Drum Recommends, where you can check the annual list of the top 100 companies and filter the results by user reviews or recommendations.
Social networks. All good agencies are represented on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, as well as WeChat, Weibo, QQ and Qzone, if they work in China and Southeast Asia. The quality and popularity of the page on social networks is another important criterion when choosing a marketing agency: it will be very strange if a company that specializes in digital marketing has a page with poor design and low user activity.
Company Portfolio. The best way to find out what a marketing agency can do for you is to see what it has done for other customers. Therefore, well-packaged use cases are the main sign that the agency in question is worth attention. Of course, provided that there is something to see.
What to look at in the portfolio:
The site of the company. Any marketing agency today should have a good, regularly updated website. It should be modern, interesting and contain all the elements of an effective inbound marketing strategy: an active blog, responsive design, clear navigation, SEO content and much more to create brand awareness and attract new business.
At the same time, the website of an advertising agency does not have to be in the top of search results on Google, even if the company specializes in SEO. It is possible that the agency prefers to spend time not on promoting its site, but on promoting customer sites. However, even in this case, the site of the marketing agency should be of high quality and have a nice design.
In addition to the company’s website, reviews can also be found on:
Case studies. The best way for an agency to show its level of expertise is through case studies. This can be large market research, meta-analyses of several studies of other companies, training content, detailed use cases, analysis of current trends and employee columns where they share knowledge and experience.
If there are no case studies, look for another marketing partner.