When shopping around for a digital marketing agency, there are many things to consider in order to ensure that you pick the ideal one for you. The agency that will fit you best should have goals that mirror yours for success. Understanding their offerings and how these service lines can benefit your business is the key to making the most of your investment. Additionally, it is crucial to be able to recognize any red flags that may signal that an agency is not operating at the highest standards. Here are a few tips for your research when it comes to finding the right digital marketing agency for your business.

how-to-look-for-in-a-digital-marketing-agency

Building a Beneficial Partnership

If a company doesn’t have the goals for your marketing efforts that parallel your own, it will be harder to build a mutually beneficial collaboration. They should want to build a partnership that will help both of you grow. Part of this comes down to developing a strategy that will lead to achieving your goals as a company. A good agency understands that working with you to successfully achieve your goals will lead to two things: repeat/on-going business and a satisfactory referral to others that can benefit from their services.

What Does the Agency Offer?

The most important thing an agency can offer is their expertise. The main point of hiring an online marketing agency to help is to take advantage of their knowledge and experience to guide you through your marketing efforts. If their suggested pathway to your success is not what you anticipated, don’t hesitate to ask for clarification or the reasoning behind their methods. They are the experts you are hiring so they should have a better understanding of how to navigate the marketing strategy. Transparency in their processes will help you to ensure that you are spending your money wisely.

Besides expertise, it is paramount that you know what the internet marketing company can offer you and how to leverage those offerings to benefit your business.

The Story Told by Their Website

When you are trying to make a decision regarding a digital marketing agency, it is imperative that you take a look at their company website before you even think about talking to one of their sales staff. They should have a website that has a clear listing of each of the services that they provide. If you are unfamiliar or are curious about these services, make a note to ask about them to see if they are relevant to your goals. If you are new to digital marketing, it would be prudent to delve a bit more into the industry in order to understand the objectives of basic service lines like SEO, as well as the terminology that will likely come up in your discussions. A good firm to partner your marketing efforts with will have a wide variety of service lines that will fully encompass your needs. If the firm is small or only focuses on one or two aspects of digital marketing, they may not be able to cover all of your needs to meet your goals.

You may also find that some digital marketing agencies only list a few of their core services on their website. They will more than likely not even mention service offerings that they are less well-versed in executing. These core services, or their specializations, can be used as a guide for you to determine whether or not they will be a good fit for your business. For example, if what you are looking for is an agency that has a strong background in design and branding, this is something that should be specifically mentioned on their website. If it isn’t, you might want to continue your search for a digital marketing agency elsewhere. Similarly, if you are looking for social media and or SEO, these services need to be prominently featured on their website.

If you really want to make sure that you are saving both time and money, make sure that you do your research on the agencies that you are considering before you even pick up the phone to have a discussion with a salesperson. We all know that salespeople tend to be just a bit overzealous when it comes to describing what they think you want to hear when their commission is on the line.

Check References

Before you even consider signing on the dotted line, you need to speak to or correspond by email with a few references that they have provided. Don’t be afraid to avoid the canned testimonials when it comes to references either. Those are easy to falsify and there is really no good way to make sure that they are even accurate. Instead of just taking the canned testimonials as a be-all-end-all, don’t hesitate to ask for a few names, emails, and phone numbers of some of their past clients. Reach out to them and have a conversation with these references regarding their experience with the agency in question.

What to Avoid

There are some red flags that should put you on alert right away. If what an agency is offering sounds too good to be true, it likely is. Be wary of digital marketing firms that can’t explain the services that they provide to you in detail- it could be a sign that they are uninformed or inexperienced. It is also possible that detailed explanations of their services would reveal black-hat tactics. A good agency should help you to understand the process step-by-step, and be able to tell you why each step is important. It is also good if a company can provide references or case studies from clients that can further fortify the legitimacy of their tactics. Tread with caution if a firm is reluctant or unable to provide references – having nothing to show may mean they have nothing to be proud of or no success stories for you to see.

Hiring the right digital marketing company can make the difference between your business being successful and throwing away money. Make sure the firm you pick is aligned with your goals, can offer you right services to meet your needs, and has a proven-track record of success.