5 Steps to Ensure You Select the Best Marketing Agency for Your Growing Company.

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5 Steps to Ensure You Select the Best Marketing Agency for Your Growing Company.

When you first established your business model, you may have gotten along just fine by using your personal connections and hard work to attract customers. But as your customer base expands, professional help becomes increasingly important. Of course, you need to find a partner that both understands your business and can help you effectively market it to your target audience. To get you started in that process, here are 5 steps needed to select the best marketing agency for your growing company.
1) Initial Research
Your first step will be to do your homework. That means finding a number of agencies that could be a potential fit for your company, based on the services they provide, their proximity to both your location and your industry, and a number of other factors that are of a concern to you.
In the course of this initial research, you may come across a variety of terms designed to “wow” potential clients. Understanding common digital marketing terms can help you sort through the clutter and help you to separate legitimate marketing agencies from those that make unsustainable promises.
2) Understanding Price Models
A second step should be to understand just how agencies will impact your budget. Generally speaking, you can expect one of three budget models:

  • Flat fee: The agency will charge you a fee on top of true marketing costs, typically ranging between 10% and 25%. Regardless of how your efforts perform, your cost will be marketing costs plus the fee.
  • Project-based: Alternatively, the agency may attach a specific and set cost to any project or campaign. For example, you are planning a Facebook campaign designed to raise your brand’s profile. Your agency may charge a $500 fee to runthe contest and provide results, regardless of how much money you will be spending on the campaign itself.
  • Incentive-based: This model (also known as performance-based) will cost you varying amounts depending on the success of the campaign in question. It’s the most forward-thinking alternative, and one that holds your agency accountable for setting up a marketing campaign that works for your business.

Of course, many agencies offer a combination of the above models to make up their pricing structure. Understanding these structures can help you find a partner that matches both your budget and expectations.
3) Doing the Background Check
Next, it’s time to vet your agency. You can do so with a few introductory calls with the agency itself, at which point you should ask specifically about case studies of past clients within your industry. But if you want to get a truly accurate picture of your agency’s success history, ask for references,
As you can probably imagine, most agencies treat introductory calls as a sales opportunity to get more business. That doesn’t mean they’ll lie to you, but they do have an (understandable) agenda to sell you on their business. Getting in touch with past clients helps you get a clearer picture of the way the agency handles its business.
4) Test Their Expertise
The world of digital marketing is in a constant state of change. Just last month, Instagram announced major changes to its platform that will make a major impact on how marketers use the social media network. Whether a marketing agency knows about these changes as they occur, and how quickly they can adjust your marketing efforts to them, will be crucial in ensuring lasting success for your marketing and branding efforts.
5) The Importance of Personal Connections
Finally, you should always make sure that when choosing an agency for your growing company, you find one that treats its clients as partners, with plenty of personal attention. Ask questions about who will be responsible for your account, how reporting will be structured, and how you will interface with various areas of responsibility within the industry.

Any agency-client relationship can only be successful with a strong, personal connection at its core.

To start the process of finding your next agency, and establish that personal connection, contact us. For us, your success is our success.
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