As a business owner, you don’t have the time or resources to train yourself on marketing in the digital age—and you shouldn’t even try. Even the most capable business owners can’t be their own marketing experts—they need a full-service digital marketing agency.
A good digital marketing agency is staffed with a team of specialists who are already experts in their own particular facet of digital marketing. They live and breathe their specialty, and are masters at applying that knowledge to bring leads to your business.
As Vital co-founder Zac Gregg has said, “We love it when a company we work with has a great marketing manager. But if you hire just one person to try to fill all of these essential marketing roles, you’re just hiring someone who will inevitably have to work with a marketing firm, like us, that is already successfully getting the job done for ourselves and our clients.”
The most efficient thing you can do with your marketing budget is hire an experienced digital marketing agency to start bringing you more business.
Here’s Where Your Money Goes When You Pay a Digital Marketing Agency
You know your brand, but do you have a team solely focused on marketing it? A digital marketing agency is focused on making you look good—and making you money. They know the right questions to ask to create a successful marketing strategy, and are committed to bringing your brand to an increasingly larger audience (and to the right audience).
When you’re looking at marketing agencies, it’s important to be prepared so you findthe right fit.
What to look for:
- Experience: Your business has a specific set of marketing problems. Have they successfully solved those problems for businesses like yours before? You don’t want to be someone’s guinea pig. Look for applicable experience.
- Endorsements: Ask your friends and colleagues for referrals—chances are, there are others in your circle of contacts that have gone through a similar process, and are eager to share their success story.
- Proven success: Does the agency invest in their own marketing? A successful marketing firm will look successful. (Oftentimes, agencies will use the poor excuse of the cobbler’s son going barefoot, but that defense doesn’t cut it in marketing.)
After working all day, sometimes the last thing on your mind is what to post on your blog, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Google+. Your digital marketing agency knows your business and personality, the demographics of your followers and the hot topics of the day. They will expertly craft content using best practices proven to drive traffic back to your website. Great content engages your audience, and is shareable, likeable, retweetable, pinnable and +1-able!
What to look for:
- A Process: Does the agency have a process? Again, you don’t want to be someone’s guinea pig. Make sure you hear a clear strategy with milestones and measures of success.
- Clear Deliverables: How many times per month, week or day is your content getting pushed out? On which channels? Who is answering comments, replies and direct messages? Make sure you are clear on the approval process so that your fans and followers don’t get ignored.
- Proven success: How often does the agency update their own blog and post content on their social channels? Do they do more than pay lip service to marketing?
A Team of Specialists
When you hire a digital marketing agency, you are getting a fully loaded Swiss army knife: project manager, budget overseer, creative director, content strategist, copywriter, designer, web developer, SEO specialist, etc. This is a group of dedicated, trained experts who take pride in their role marketing your business.
What to look for:
- Capability: Make sure to visit the agency and meet the team. Are you gaining access to a team of specialists, or three people in someone’s basement?
- Cultural Alignment: What’s their culture? Does it fit well with your own company’s culture? Can you see yourself working with their team over a long period of time?
- Proven success: Make sure the agency is successful at putting their team to work. For example, test their SEO expertise by asking Google for the best digital marketing agency. A good team works well together—do they look like they’re having fun?