Why You Should Consider Hiring a Digital Marketing Agency
December 27th, 2018 by
As 2018 comes to a close, now is the perfect time for business owners and stakeholders to reflect on the year that they’ve had, evaluate the current state of their firms, and develop solid business resolutions for a productive 2019. We often speak with businesses that are trying to decide between utilizing their in-house staff for digital marketing or hiring an external agency. The post will discuss the factors you should consider when making this choice. Regardless of the current state of your marketing, you should develop a plan that will help you strategically allocate your resources to set your business up for success in 2019.
Marketing is an investment, often a significant one. Spend your dollars wisely and entrust them to someone who has experience generating results. Marketing agencies, whether they work within one industry or a range of markets, should have several case studies detailing their experience with businesses similar to yours and the returns they have been able to achieve. Because your business can approach digital marketing through a myriad of strategies and platforms (Search Engine Optimization, Paid Search Ads, Google Display Ads, Social Media, Content Marketing, etc.), you need to find an agency that can detail how they plan to accomplish your stated goals via the numerous outlets they have at their disposal. An agency should be able to speak to the certifications of their team within each of these platforms, previous campaigns they have run, and their overall digital marketing expertise to help you to feel confident in moving forward. Though you or members of your team may have had some success running a Paid Search campaign in the past, did that campaign perform to its true potential? Which previous campaigns can you compare that to? Digital marketing agencies have historical data and industry benchmarks, as well as teams of strategists, to steer campaigns in the right direction. While a member on your staff may be a self-proclaimed Facebook expert, does that qualify them as someone you would trust to develop an engaging social media campaign across several platforms with custom graphics and promoted posts? Though your in-house marketing team may have some digital marketing experience, do they have the time to navigate the continuous algorithm updates that Google makes throughout the year? An agency’s experience should demonstrate their ability to provide direction to your marketing and, most importantly, a return on your investment.
As with any decision, cost will be an integral factor. Depending on your goals, a holistic marketing campaign may be more expensive than expected. Conversely, doing it yourself, or doing nothing at all, may already be costing you more than you think. A well-designed strategy executed by experienced marketers should pay for itself while also allowing you and your team to save time. Even if you have an in-house marketing team, and many of our current clients do, a digital marketing agency can augment their efforts, increasing your reach and efficiency. Additionally, by having an agency, you will be able to tap into their established tools and reporting. Are you thinking about moving forward with a digital marketing agency but are still worried that the cost will be prohibitive? Share your concerns with the agency you are considering. They should be transparent about their pricing and explain the scope of the campaign they are pitching, as well as the strategies they plan to employ. You can also ask if it is possible to begin your partnership as a piloted effort, in which the agency will be able to earn additional business by effectively performing a portion of the work you are looking to accomplish. We have experienced this situation several times. Though our aim is to develop a comprehensive strategy to reach our clients’ goals as quickly as possible, we have plenty of experience starting off with a slice of a company’s marketing budget and then using the quality of our work and results to prove that they have partnered with the right firm.
Another potential issue that business owners and key stakeholders mention is that they doubt an external agency’s ability to properly capture the voice and culture of their organization. The process of finding a digital marketing agency should provide an opportunity to get an outsider’s opinion of how clearly you’re projecting your voice online. The agency you choose to partner with can help you find or refine your voice and maintain consistency in your messaging. One of the benefits of a relationship with a respectable agency is the amount of time they will spend consulting you during the initial outreach and objective setting process. Most agencies will invest a significant amount of time getting to know your organization and analyzing existing messaging to ensure that your voice is effectively captured and presented. Additionally, you should always be able to review and edit materials they create on your behalf. No one knows your business the way that you do, but through the steps listed above, the right agency can surprise you with how quickly they grasp and effectively market the culture you have created.
Effective and easily digestible analytics and lead tracking, along with the ability to show a return on investment, are the best reasons for you to consider hiring an agency. You should expect any digital marketing firm you work with to provide comprehensive reporting that offers insights into the impact of their campaigns. This is no place for ambiguity, and the right agency will effectively demonstrate “where the rubber meets the road” on an ongoing basis. Effective reporting allows your agency to effectively hold itself accountable to reaching the goals you agreed upon.
After considering the four factors discussed above, you and your team should reflect on the performance of your current digital marketing strategy and feel more confident in moving forward with an agency in 2019. Since 2006, Search Influence has helped hundreds of clients improve their presence online. If you still have any questions about how partnering with a digital marketing agency can help your business grow, fill out our form for a free marketing analysis or call us at (504) 322-3828.