When it comes to growing your business, having the right marketing agency on board can be crucial. From website design and SEO to content creation and digital design, hard copy, packaging and print, a good marketing agency can help you create, and implement, a comprehensive marketing strategy that will get the word out about your business. But finding the right fit is not always easy, so here are some tips for selecting an effective marketing agency that will work best for you.
Define your goals and objectives for using a marketing agency
Before deciding to work with a marketing agency, it’s important to establish what your goals are. Do you want to increase your brand’s visibility and recognition, or promote a specific product or service? Are you looking to generate more leads or drive more sales? Or perhaps you want to improve your website’s conversion rate? Whatever your ultimate objective is, identifying it early on can help you narrow down your search for the right partner. With a clear vision in mind, you’ll be better able to evaluate prospective agencies and determine which ones are best equipped to help you achieve your goals. By taking the time to establish your goals upfront, you’ll be on the path to finding a marketing partner who’s truly aligned with your business objectives.
It’s also important to assess your current branding, are you just starting out and need a new brand creating? Or do you have existing elements that need to roll out over more areas, or have lost relevance and fallen behind the opposition? Having an idea on what areas you need to focus on will help you decide which type of agency best fits your needs.
If you are not sure where to start, look for an agency that at the very least offers free consultations. We know how challenging it can be for new businesses to get started with marketing, but also how getting a fresh insight can turn around an existing business, so we offer free consultation meetings to get to know you and your needs. Get in touch now to book a session – online, or in person!
Research different types of agencies and the services they offer
There are many different types of marketing agencies, each with their own specialisation or skill sets. Full-service agencies, as the name suggests, offer a comprehensive range of services, from digital and traditional marketing to PR, branding, and event management. These agencies can serve as a one-stop shop for all your marketing needs, making them a great option for businesses that want a unified approach to their marketing efforts.
On the other hand, there are also niche or specialised agencies that focus on a particular area of marketing. For instance, social media agencies specialise in online promotions and social media marketing, while content marketing agencies focus on creating and managing content for various platforms. These specialised agencies are ideal for businesses that have specific goals or are looking to enhance a particular aspect of their marketing. Selecting the right type of agency largely depends on your specific needs and goals.
Create a list of potential agencies that fit your needs
The location of the marketing agency and your budget are two crucial factors that can significantly influence your final decision.
For some businesses, a local agency may be the best fit. Face-to-face meetings and a shared understanding of the local market can be advantageous, especially for businesses that primarily operate within a specific region. However, with the advent of digital communication tools, it’s equally possible to maintain a beneficial and successful relationship with an agency that isn’t located nearby.
Budget, on the other hand, is undeniably a major determinant. It’s important to work out how much you’re willing to invest in your marketing efforts and ensure that the cost of the agency’s services aligns with your financial capability. Remember that the most expensive agency isn’t necessarily the best one for your business. What matters most is that they can deliver effective results within your budget. Therefore, transparency about costs from the onset is vital to avoid any unpleasant surprises further down the line.
When considering both location and budget, the key is to strike a balance between what is ideal and what is practical, ensuring you choose an agency that can deliver the results you want, within your budget, and your preferred mode of communication.
Ask for recommendations
Make use of your network and ask for recommendations from colleagues, clients or business partners who have worked with agencies in the past. A referral can be a great way to quickly narrow down your list of potential candidates and get an informed opinion about their services and results. It might also be worth checking that the same team who produced the great work that resulted in the recommendation, is still in place.
Narrow down the list to the top 2-3 contenders
Once you have compiled your initial list of potential agencies, it’s time to start the screening process. This is where things like reputation, experience and portfolio come into play. Researching an agency’s past clients as well as their body of work will give you a better idea of what type of results they can deliver for your business.
This is also the stage where you might want to consider arranging a meeting with the agency. A face-to-face conversation can be very instructive as it allows you to gain more insight into their culture, approach, and overall attitude towards marketing your specific company, offer, or product.
Set up meetings and review portfolios
With your selection narrowed down it’s time to start setting up meetings and reviewing portfolios. This step is essential for you to understand what the agency can do for your business as well as the level of creativity they are likely to bring to your project.
The portfolio will give you a good indication of their style, quality and technical expertise; whereas talking with them face-to-face allows you to get a better understanding of their working methods and how they might approach your project.
Creating a rough brief on your business and what your goals are can help them better understand your requirements and expectations, as well as give you an opportunity to discuss their methods in more detail.
We think this step is so important, we offer free no obligation consultations and proposals. This lets us get to know you and your business better and gives you a better understanding of the services and messaging we think would best fit your business needs.
Make the final decision
After meeting with the top contenders, it’s time to make your final decision. When going through the evaluation process, consider all of the factors mentioned above – from their reputation and portfolio to recommended communication styleand ‘tone of voice’. Consider which agency best aligns with your marketing goals and expectations and only then make a final decision.
Once you’ve made your choice, follow up with the agency to ensure they have all the details about your project. Signing an agreement is also important for both parties to agree on scope of work, budget, timeline and other details.
Finally, it’s time to get to work! With the right agency by your side, you can take your marketing efforts to the next level and reach new heights.
Simpsons Creative is a Hertfordshire advertising agency based in Bishop’s Stortford, we work with big and small businesses to deliver creative, effective advertising solutions.
We have a range of advertising clients from large national clients to small local businesses. We offer a complete advertising service from initial concepts, through to design and production, media planning and buying and post campaign analysis.
Not sure what you need? Get in touch today for a free consultation to see what we can do to help. Or view our portfolio to see examples of our work.