Getting the most out of your marketing agency
Using an agency to help you achieve your marketing goals and promote your services in an online space comes at a financial cost to your business.
However, if you work with them to maximise their offering, more often than not, the return on investment can greatly exceed the cost involved.
Below, I have summarised a few crucial tips in order to get the most out of your marketing agency, and more importantly, your financial output and ultimate return on investment.
Setting clear business goals and expectations
As a business, you should know your business objectives before hiring a marketing agency to carry out your marketing activities. If you know what you want to achieve, share it with the agency from the beginning, so everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goal.
Whether it’s an increase in revenue from a particular channel, an increase in relevant traffic to a specific target audience, or a desperate need to build brand awareness, this needs to be shared with the people in charge of driving this forward.
Not only will this ensure everyone is working towards a common goal, it can massively aid the agency to formulate strategies adhering to the objectives. Deal with this early, as you don’t want to waste precious time (and money) due to a lack of communication from the beginning.
For example, at I-COM, we always carry out a thorough onboarding process including a face to face meeting where expectations, goals, KPIs, budgets, and projected results are detailed from the start.
This means the client and agency relationship is strong and transparent from the very beginning.
If the goals change, make sure this is communicated with the team as soon as possible!
Managing your agency relationship
Work with the grain, not against it! It is completely understandable to want to be involved with what activity is being carried out to market your business. However, in order for your agency to succeed, there has to be a huge level of trust. Working with a new agency doesn't have to be difficult, and with trust and communication, a new agency can become the right agency quickly.
You hired an expert agency to help, so let their expertise formulate the strategy and activities - marketing agencies need information from you to help understand your market and how things work in your industry, but when it comes to the creative execution and strategic outline, trusting your marketing agency to carry this out is crucial to building a relationship with them and getting the most value out of your investment.
Agencies want to work with your marketing team, as their key insights are of huge value in order to aid strategic decisions.
If it is a constant battle between your business and your agency, issues such as delays and inconsistencies can arise, which will likely lead to unsatisfactory outcomes and a breakdown in your agency relationship.
Provide timely and relevant feedback
This is an important one. Working in digital marketing for the best part of the decade, I have seen how delivering consistent and timely feedback to your agency can be a critical factor in being successful.
That can be feedback on the content marketing the agency is producing, the quality of lead coming through a paid search campaign, or the communication levels your agency is giving you.
If the agency isn't giving you what you need, speak to your account manager at the earliest point, and work with them to resolve the issues.
If this isn’t communicated and communicated at the first opportunity, frustration can build, which will ultimately hinder the relationship and more importantly, the success of your marketing efforts.
At the end of the day, you want the most bang for your buck, so make sure you get it!
Measuring and analysing results needs to be a regular occurrence
The name of the game is results, and if your business and your agency are not reviewing this, how do you know where your money is going?
Marketing agencies need accountability, and with regular reporting with clear KPIs, this can be a painless experience if results are reviewed often and constructive feedback is given.
This also is massively important for trust and transparency. Data doesn’t lie, and if your agency provides you with regular progress updates, whether that be a meeting or a report, you will know if you are achieving an ROI for your output (or well on your way to this point).
This means your agency can constantly test ways to improve, whether that be a change in internal processes to make communication stronger, or a change in strategy and focus, for example a focus on paid search to deliver more high quality leads quickly.
So there you have it, my top tips to ensure you’re getting the most out of your marketing agency including a positive relationship and a good return on investment. If you would like to contact us to discuss how our agency can help you, please feel free to email me or give us a call on 0161 402 3170 to discuss your options.