What's in this article?
If you’re reading this, I’m assuming you’ve made — or are on the cusp of making — the expert decision to hire a marketing agency for your organization.
If you’ve had any hesitations leading up to this point, I’m here to tell you with confidence that the best marketing agency will significantly grow your business. And they’ll do it with an entire team that costs about the same as one full-time employee.
There are really only two ways NOT to achieve success with a marketing agency:
- Hire an agency that is not an expert at what you want to accomplish
- Don’t listen to the experts you have hired
Just for context, if this is the first time we’ve met, I’m the founder of Kaleidico, a digital marketing agency focused on lead generation for the financial, sales, mortgage, and legal services industries.
Bookmark the previous sentence — it’s our positioning statement. More on that later.
Excellent agencies are, by design, the most exceptional marketing expertise you can hire. Yet, companies have nightmarish agency experiences all the time.
My goal in this article is to share my experience, delivering good and occasionally bad agency experiences over the last 15 years.
What is an Agency?
You’re going to notice that I keep using the terms “best” marketing agency, or “the right” marketing agency. These are more than just keywords used to get your eyes on this page — it’s a distinction. Not every agency is going to be the right one, or the best one, for your organization.
It’ll take more than an agency that looks good on paper or knows how to talk the talk. First, let’s define what a marketing agency does and what types of professionals make up this group.
A marketing agency is a team consisting of the following experts:
- Project managers
- Content creators
- Web developers
This team is dedicated to growing your business through brand awareness and lead generation.
Working with your unique goals and objectives, the team will launch and maintain campaigns on all channels, supported by beautiful web design, specific keyword research, and the most effective technology.
The digital world is rapidly evolving, and without the right team, your organization can easily get lost in the shuffle.
Why Hire a Marketing Agency?
If you have the resources to individually hire multiple strategists, project managers, a web development team, social media managers, and content creators, then you probably don’t need a marketing agency.
But my guess is most organizations don’t have the time, energy, or resources to hire these professionals, train them, and oversee — or even fully understand — the quality of their output.
When you hire an agency, you’re getting a team dedicated to your company’s growth. These experts are trained to leverage the latest technology across channels in a way that seamlessly incorporates your unique identity and goals.
An agency’s work might include:
- Working with your company’s team to build a strategy
- Performing keyword research
- Executing and maintaining all projects and campaigns across channels
- Consistently producing high-quality content with built-in SEO
- Building or optimizing your website and landing pages
Hiring the best marketing agency for your company will require a bit of research upfront to find a team of experts you can trust, but once you fill them in on your objectives and what makes you unique, they can execute it effortlessly.
However, if you haven’t done the work to identify who you are as an organization, what you stand for, and what you want to accomplish, finding the right agency can be tricky.
How to Select the Best Agency for Your Organization
Choosing the best marketing agency requires some solid groundwork. Sit with your team and establish a clear plan of your organization’s goals and expectations to present to your potential candidates.
This might include stronger leads, more sales, a new website, content strategy, or the use of specific tools like Pay-Per-Click (PPC).
Determine what you need and match it to what an agency offers, or you could fall victim to the wrong agency’s ploys.
Write a Positioning Statement
Remember my positioning statement from earlier? If you don’t have one, write one.
This statement succinctly describes what you offer, who your target audience is, and how you deliver what you offer to them.
Evaluate their Portfolio, Partnerships, and Personality
I also highly recommend checking out the agency’s website and content to determine if you like what you see.
What do you think of the site design? Is the content clear, convincing, exciting, and well-written?
And what about the team members themselves? Are they easy to work with? Do you “click” with them?
Check for their portfolio, partners, and companies that promote them, too. Is the work consistent across the board? Then you might have a winner for best marketing agency.
Be Wary of the Agency that Always Says, “Yes!”
As an established professional yourself, I think it’s fair to assume you’ve come across those who overpromise and underdeliver. The same caution should be extended to your marketing agency candidates.
The best marketing agencies know who they are and what they are good at. If you’re having your initial meeting and they are saying “yes” to everything without specifics, examples, or a clear plan of how they intend to execute it, this is a red flag.
This extends even to taking you on as a client. Are they taking the time to get to know you, asking a lot of questions, and really trying to dig into who you are and what you need?
If the answer is no, this either means that they’re making assumptions about what you need, or just going to give you the same solutions they give everyone else. I’m not sure which is worse.
How to Work with an Agency to Get Exceptional Outcomes
Results don’t necessarily equal successful outcomes. And the only way to accurately measure these outcomes is to clearly outline your expectations from the start.
Finding the best marketing agency for you can take some time and effort, but remember the following advice when making your decision:
- Accurately and thoroughly present your company, goals, and objectives to the agency
- Ask for specifics on what the agency offers, and how they execute it
- Determine how well your objectives match the agency’s expertise and experience
If you’re ready to hire the best marketing agency for your organization, reach out to Kaleidico to discuss your unique objectives. We’d love to share with you how we’ve helped similar clients achieve their growth goals.