8 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Digital Marketing Agency
Companies who have waited to get started with social media still have an opportunity to get started with website updates, social media interaction, blogs, and other digital marketing tactics.
Whether you’re the owner of a small company, or running a corporation, if bringing your digital marketing in-house isn’t an option, working with an agency is an optimum solution.
The problem is that there are plenty of agencies out there who are ready to take advantage of people who don’t understand social media, web analytics, website design and development, and SEO. These agencies can charge customers unfair prices and may not deliver on their claims because they assume their clients won’t know any better. Clients sign up for a contract and are able to say, “We’re online” but aren’t seeing ROI, and aren’t incorporating their digital marketing into their overall marketing mix. Clients probably have no idea what their website is or isn’t capable of, what level of engagement they have with customers, or if the SEO research the agency is doing is working.
Here are 8 questions to ask before hiring an outside agency
- Does the agency have an updated, modern website? If the agency’s site looks old, is difficult to navigate, and not attractive, chances are your website won’t be either.
- Does the agency have examples of their work on their site? (Portfolio) This gives you an idea of their aesthetic, types of clients they work with, and their creative capabilities.
- Do they have clients you can call for a reference/recommendation?
- Does the agency offer a free consultation? This gives you and the agency time to see if the relationship is a good fit, bounce ideas, and get a feel for how the agency works.
- How often do they send analytics, and how often will they schedule meetings to review the analytics? (a monthly meeting is ideal for a meeting)
- Do analytics cost extra? If they do, I don’t recommend hiring that agency. Analytics show the progress and successes of your and the agency’s work. Agencies should WANT to show you the progress of campaigns.
- If the agency will be doing SEO for you, make sure you get notifications of which keywords they’re testing and the progress of that testing. (Again, this should not cost extra.)
- Will the agency or will you be updating the website? This is something to discuss with the agency to figure out the best solution for your company’s needs. If the website will be updated daily, someone in-house should be able to update it.
One of the last things to consider is the length of the contract. I’ve talked to many companies who got “a great deal” by signing up for a 3-year contract. What ended up happening is they forgot about their website, didn’t work with the agency (and the agency didn’t call them to discuss updates) so the agency got a lot of money for not a lot of work. A 1-year contract is the longest I’d recommend because that is enough time for the agency to test out campaigns, build up engagement, and to see if this is a relationship you want for long-term.
What other questions do you recommend asking an agency? Are there questions you wish you would have asked before working with an agency? Let me know in the comments section, or call Branding Personality at 1.888.747.3263.