“How much do you charge?” Believe it or not, there are more important questions to ask before hiring a digital marketing marketing agency. While there’s no denying the cost has to fit your budget, the agency still needs to be able to justify their price tag and a whole lot more.
Not only should they say they can add value to your business, but they need to prove it to you. Here are some surefire questions to ask, to guarantee your future agency can back up their claims to success!
1. What is your projection for added value? How did you determine that?
Your future digital marketing agency should be able to provide you with a roadmap to your success. They could determine this projection a few different ways. Maybe it’s based on past client results, or better yet they also take into account your specific business and the strategy they will develop to meet your goals. Either way, make sure they can provide you with actual numbers and proof.
2. How long will it take to see results?
Is it a week? A month? A year? If you don’t know, you might get stuck with an agency waiting for results to happen. Conversely, you don’t want to hire a digital marketing agency under the expectation that your conversions will instantly skyrocket if that’s not the case. Set clear expectations for when you will see results, and understand that it might take a bit of set up. Be wary of companies that give overly vague timelines, though.
3. How do you measure success?
What metrics do they use to define success? ROAS? CPO/CPA? Make sure the KPIs they use benefit your company. Also, are they adaptable? If they typically track ROAS across online ecommerce transactions, are they able to measure the value of lead generation instead? Before you hire a digital marketing agency, make sure they can adapt their measure of success to meet your needs.
The one metric most agencies forget to look at is profit. However, if your agency isn’t tracking profit you are definitely leaving money on the table. Profit allows you to maximize efficiency, and spend the perfect amount on advertising. Read more about the benefits of profit as a KPI here.
5. How will my account be passed from sales to fulfillment?
If you are currently working with a sales representative, ask them how they will transition your account to your analyst or agency representative. Will the sales rep work with your future account manager to discuss the details of your goals? Or will your account simply be passed to the next warm body without any discussion? Do some digging and see what you can find out.
6. Have you worked with businesses in the same industry as mine?
Get a feel for if the marketing agency is comfortable working with a company in your industry. Do they have knowledge of your space, terminology, and customers? If not, how will they learn about your industry and incorporate that into their strategy? Make sure they are willing and able to adapt, and confident working with you if they don’t have experience in your industry.
7. Have you handled an account of my size?
If you are a larger, enterprise company, it is important to ensure your next agency has the tools to take your expansive product lines. Find out if they have any case studies of work with similar clients. Also, look for reviews and proof that they have worked with larger clients successfully. You might want to ask what tools they use to handle larger accounts, like in-house technology or automation. (More on that in a bit!)
8. If my company grows will you be able to grow with us?
Even if you aren’t an enterprise business, you might be someday! Before hiring a digital marketing agency, make sure they have the capabilities to work with an account of a larger size, and grow with your business.
9. Can you adapt your strategy if my business goals change?
We already touched on adapting metrics and growing with your business, but can the agency also change their strategy? For example, let’s say your original goal is to increase brand awareness. After working with the agency for awhile, you have seen success and you’re ready to switch to driving conversions and reaching repeat customers. Can they do that?
10. What strategies do you use that are unique?
Ideally, your future agency would be a thought leader in their space. You want an agency that strives for innovation and strategies that drive success. Find out which strategies they use are unique to them — and also why they use them! Bonus: ask if they have ebooks or whitepapers, so you can read about their strategies in-depth.
11. Do you have any unique in-house software?
What proprietary tools does the agency use? Have they developed and unique software or technology that they use in their account management? This could be a great differentiator when hiring a digital marketing agency. For example, at Omnitail we have developed our own Bid Tool, which incorporates numerous factors to calculate the bid adjustment needed to maximize profit!
12. Are any processes automated?
Technology is great, but be wary of companies who automate everything. Will your account simply be plugged into a software and left to run? Read our whitepaper to find out why this might not be a great idea.
That said—you don’t necessarily want an agency that does everything by hand, either! Ideally, their reps will rely on a mixture of technology and manpower. Let the computers do what computers are best at (data entry, campaign builds, and other repetitive tasks), while the account manager tackles the more complex strategic adjustments!
13. Who will manage my account and how?
Is it a team? A software? An analyst? Find out who will take charge of your management and how often you will hear from them. Also, do they communicate via a monthly phone call or just an email? How often will they make changes to your campaigns and bids?
14. How many other accounts does my representative handle?
This question can be very revealing. If the answer is over 30-50, you might want to reconsider the agency. If your representative has too many accounts, odds are each business isn’t getting the individual attention it deserves.
15. How does your team stay up to date?
Digital marketing is always changing. That’s why it is important to make sure your agency stays on top of the latest trends and certifications. Do keep their team up to date with Google certifications? At Omnitail, in order to stay in the know, we have monthly Lunch-and-Learns to discuss current events, as well as monthly meetings to discuss new account strategies.
We hope these questions will help you choose the best agency to fit your business’s needs! If you still need help, feel free to reach out to speak to an Omnitail analyst today.