So, you’ve realized you need a digital marketing agency. Maybe your conversions are suffering, you are missing out on marketing opportunities, or your social media has floundered for months without a post and your SEO rankings continue to fall.
First, congratulations on recognizing the value of outsourcing digital marketing to the experts.
While hiring a digital marketing agency is, undoubtedly, a big investment, you may find it’s less costly than developing a large in-house marketing team to manage all the channels and create all the content your growing organization needs. Hiring a digital marketing agency saves money on:
- Hiring, training and onboarding employees
- Infrastructure costs
- Payroll costs and benefits
But, to get the most value for your investment, you want to choose the right digital marketing agency. Beyond finding an agency that fits your company culture and just gives you feel-good vibes about both their competency and their client service, you want to make sure they have not just the basics, but the services and competencies that set a marketing agency apart.
What should you look for to choose the right digital marketing agency?
Digital Marketing Agency Services that Match Your Needs
First and foremost, you want to find a digital marketing agency that can deliver the services you need, with expertise in the platforms that make the most sense for your company. For instance, if you plan to use Pinterest Shopping to reach your demographic, you want an agency that can show success in that area for their clients. Looking to beef up your TikTok following? You want an agency that shows they are on the cutting edge of the latest trends.
Of course, your agency of choice should have proficiency across the board in helping you create a digital marketing strategy that will increase your reach, boost conversions, and help build your brand. Once you’ve pinpointed your target audience, you want an agency that knows how to reach that audience in the places they regularly spend time online.
What services should your performance marketing agency or paid search agency be able to handle for you? Well here is a list of common paid media services that agencies can provide:
- Meta ads (i.e. Facebook ads and Instagram ads)
- Google ads (also known as paid search ads)
- TikTok ads
- Snapchat ads
- YouTube ads
- Pinterest ads
Solid, Verifiable Track Record with Brands Like Yours
Building a brand and converting a strong digital presence to sales in a brick-and-mortar location is very different than helping an ecommerce site boost sales on Amazon. Similarly, B2C organizations may use different strategies and tactics and B2B enterprises. Target audiences also differ dramatically amongst brands.
It’s important to find a digital agency that is familiar with working with brands like yours – from the channels you use to promote your company to the audience you want to reach. Ask an agency for case studies or examples of results they’ve achieved for companies that are similar to yours in size, budget, and audience.
Sandhill Digital has experience working with brands of all sizes across a variety of markets, but not every agency can say that. Whether you are trying to launch a startup or grow an enterprise B2B company, you want to find a partner that understands your unique needs, challenges, and opportunities.
Variety of Digital Marketing Agency Partnerships
While you need an agency that can deliver results across the platforms you want to use, often you also need value-added services that a single company can’t deliver for you. That’s where the right partnerships come into play.
Sandhill Digital has partnerships with companies like Facebook, Google, Shopify, Klaviyo, and Gorgias to deliver everything from shipping solutions to high quality e-commerce websites on an easy-to-use platform. Even if you don’t think you need some of these services now, you might as your company grows. Being able to find all the marketing and eCommerce services you need under one roof, through one point-of-contact, can help your company reduce overall costs and work more efficiently.
Scalable Services to Fit Your Budget Now and Accommodate Future Growth
Sandhill Digital has helped companies like Seek Discomfort generate over $400k in eCommerce revenue through paid social ads alone. As their sales grew, so did the company’s marketing needs. Our scalable services are designed to help companies from start-up to second-stage growth and beyond.
A good marketing agency should allow you to scale your services seasonally based on peak sale months, and based on your company growth. That’s one of the benefits, after all, of hiring an agency instead of onboarding in-house employees. A marketing agency offers flexibility and scalability you won’t have with an in-house team. You don’t want to pay employees during slower times and have to find work to keep them busy. After a stage of fast growth, it can take months to find the right employees to help scale your campaigns. A digital agency can always increase your program and add workers to your account as needed, so you won’t fall behind and can take advantage of every opportunity for growth.
Ask These Questions Before You Hire a Digital Marketing Agency
Whether you’re seeking a consulting partner, someone to implement the marketing tactics you know you need, or both, there are certain questions you should ask before you sign a contract with an agency.
Can you scale your program as your needs grow or change? Do they have the staff, resources, and partnerships in place to accommodate your company now and in future?
What will they need from you to get started? Do they have onboarding paperwork that will help them get to know your company? How many hours will you need to invest in meetings so their team has the information they need to present your organization in the right way, learn your brand voice, and create the type of content that will resonate with your audience? There’s no right or wrong answer, here. You just want to make sure they are devoting the time necessary to understand your company’s needs, while working efficiently so you don’t have to spend time you don’t have to help your marketing agency get it right.
What are their workflows like? Do they use a project management platform or communications apps? Will you need access to them? Again, depending on how much or how little involvement you prefer to have, tools such as Slack or project management aps can help you work more efficiently with your outsourced marketing team.
How do they measure results?
Does the agency track your results and provide rock-solid analytics? What platforms do they use? What metrics do they focus on? It’s important to find an agency that can stand behind their results with solid facts an figures.
Can they share past results or client testimonials?
Ask about their biggest success stories and see if their successes match the services you need. Again, it’s important to look for solid, verifiable numbers.
Client testimonials can also say a lot about the level of service you can expect from an agency. They can also show that the agency is comfortable working with brands like yours, which is extremely important.
Most importantly, check out the online profiles of the brands that have provided testimonials. Do you like what you see? Do the social media numbers match the claims? Are the brands delivering value to their following?
Are You Ready to Work with Sandhill?
In all elements of marketing and creative strategy, it’s important to take a “show, don’t tell” approach. The proof of an agency’s success is exemplified in their customers’ results.
Asking such in-depth questions will also give you an opportunity to see if the company is a culture-fit with your organization. Even with outsourced marketing, this is important as it can help streamline productivity when the company you work with understands your needs and the messaging that will catch the attention of your audience.
You can get started with Sandhill Digital with a free consultation. We can help you determine if we might be a good fit to help with your marketing through our data-driven strategies and best-in-class creative.