Marketing your company is a must if you have any hope for success. Unfortunately, marketing your company effectively can be very time-consuming and can require a significant amount of resources. It’s why many businesses choose to outsource to an advertising agency. There are many reputable agencies out there to choose from; however, there are also plenty of agencies that can do more harm than good. To make sure that the money you spend on an agency will actually translate to real results, use the following tips to hire the right advertising agency:
1. Find an Advertising Agency That Focuses on Culture
There are a lot of different factors that you should consider when comparing advertising agencies. However, one of the most important ones is the cultural fit. Make sure that the agency you hire shares the same core values as your business. A good agency that shares your values will be more collaborative and innovative. You should be able to get some sense of their culture by observing their work environment as well. If people seem active and cheerful at the same time, it’s a good sign.
2. Consider The Agency’s Talent
Arguably as important as an agency’s culture is their talent. Without talent, their culture will only take you so far. You want to work with an agency that isn’t conservative. This means that they’re not always looking to play it safe. You want an agency that’s ambitious and that is constantly looking to improve its abilities. You’ll also want to make sure that they are technologically literate. Speak with their HR team to learn about the types of people they tend to look for and hire. You should also look at their turnover rate. A high turnover rate tends to be an issue. It means that they’re either not hiring the right type of talent or that their talent tends to look elsewhere because the agency is a bad fit.
3. Don’t Rule Out Agencies Based On Location
Don’t limit your search for an advertising agency to your location. Location no longer means that much. After all, you don’t need to have in-person meetings with your agency all that often. In today’s connected world, it’s easy to keep in touch using email, online chat, video conferencing, and by phone. Additionally, it can actually benefit your company to look for an agency that’s outside of your area as it could provide you with an outside perspective. Such a perspective can really help freshen up your marketing efforts. By limiting your search to your location, you’ll limit your access to quality agencies and unique perspectives.
4. Don’t Rely Solely on RFPs
RFPs (requests for proposals) can be quite helpful, but you shouldn’t base your decision solely on an RFP. Many agencies excel at RFPs but only because they are opportunistic. When you review an RFP, speak with the agency’s leadership to get a feel for how passionate they are about the work that they do. Ask them about some of their greatest successes as well as some of their failures. The way an agency talks about their past failures can be very enlightening. After all, you’ll want an agency that is willing to reflect on its failures and learn from them.
5. Don’t Make Low Prices Your Main Priority
If you’re working with a limited advertising budget to begin with, you might be tempted to go with the agency that offers the most affordable rates. However, keep in mind that like with most things, you get what you pay for. If you go with the cheapest agency, it may result in lower quality work. They may even cut corners, which is the last thing you want when it comes to implementing a successful long-term advertising strategy.
6. Look Into Their Track Record
Do a little research into an agency’s past and current clients to get an idea of how effective they are as an advertising agency. If the agency has been around for a while, take note of its long-term clients. Clients that have stuck with them for a long time are a good indication of the agency’s quality and commitment. If an agency has a large turnover when it comes to clients, it’s often a bad sign. Be sure to ask the agency for references that you can contact as well.
Outsourcing your marketing efforts is generally a good way to save money over the long run and to ensure that you have an experienced team that you can rely on. Unfortunately, not all advertising agencies are reliable or even reputable, for that matter. As such, make sure that you use these six tips to find an advertising agency that will work closely with you to help you achieve your specific marketing goals.
The landscape of the Internet is ever changing and Nicole has the energy and aptitude to keep Stevens & Tate Marketing out in front of the pack. She leads an enthusiastic team in strategic planning, development, search engine marketing, online promotions and advertising for the web.