4 Tips for Hiring a Digital Marketing Agency

Digital marketing by its very nature is a complex and always evolving practice. It is a strategy in itself and no matter how much you may believe you’ve understood it all, you never really do.

You can hire a digital marketing agency to help you but then you also need to be aware of what exactly is it that you’re looking for in an agency and more importantly, why are you looking for one?

Some companies want to outsource their whole marketing function to an agency so that they can focus on getting more business. Whereas some just want to augment their in-house marketing team. The latter is more often the case.

No matter what your reasons are, you need to hire a digital marketing agency purely because of the state of flux digital marketing is always in. Working with an agency will make sure that you stay ahead of the curve.

Let’s explore 4 tips you need to keep in mind while on the lookout for a digital marketing agency –

Hire a Digital Marketing Agency That Is Specialized for Your Needs

It is important to hire an agency that specializes in your needs, your industry and specifically your kind of business.

While evaluating an agency try and understand what they specialize in. Some agencies are jack of all trades and it’s usually great working with them but you do need an agency that understands your business dynamics and the niche you operate in.

SEO, PPC, social media, content marketing are the basics that you’re looking for while hiring a digital marketing agency.

As you go in for a second or a third round of discussions, check for their expertise in email marketing, content creation (videos, case studies, white papers, brochures, etc.), landing page design, lead generation and full-funnel marketing.

Also, ask them about their strategy for your type of business and whether they’ve had similar clients. If you see things lining up and they have got a fair understanding of your business dynamics, they might be worth considering.

Evaluate Multiple Agencies Before Finalizing on One

You do not want to make the mistake of investing your money in the first agency you find. Take note of the pros and cons of multiple agencies so you can do more research on them later.

Most likely the first offer you get will be an agency highballing you. Be patient and let the process take its time.

Each agency will bring with it its unique quirks. Some might be great in PPC but some might specialize in your target audience. You’ll have to dig deeper and figure out the balance that works for you.

It’s good to know how long they’ve been in business. A good way to do that is simply searching online to gauge their popularity and credibility. If an agency doesn’t do a good job of outreach themselves, they’re probably not the right choice for you either.

Check for Culture-Fit

When hiring a digital marketing agency, opt for face-to-face meetings or even a video call with the team. Nothing can beat having to see the face of people you are planning to hire.

It will give you a sense of how they are and people will always work harder for those who make an effort to build rapport and asks for names.

That said, some agencies also outsource a lot of their work. If they do outsource, it is important to understand how much and what they outsource specifically. Outsourcing does not necessarily mean inferior work or a weak culture as long as you ensure the agency works with trusted contractors.

How Do They Measure Success?

You will track your digital marketing against KPIs. That makes it important to understand the KPIs an agency will use to track the performance of your campaigns. Hire an agency that has a system to track a flexible set of KPIs.

A good agency will understand your business objectives and help you achieve ‘your’ KPIs.

Also ask for the kind of reporting they provide and its frequency (quarterly, monthly, fortnightly, etc.). While high-frequency reporting might take a toll on your budget, it might not be required in the first place if the quality of reporting is good.

But it should not just stop at reporting, the agency should provide you actionable insights basis the reports and also suggest recommendations. If a digital marketing agency only gives you a number or a data point and asks you to figure it out, that’s not the agency for you.