If you are a B2B company looking to grow your customer base and increase revenue, the right marketing can take your business to the next level. But strategic marketing takes time and resources, some of which your organization may not currently have. This is when hiring an experienced marketing agency can be a wise investment. But to achieve the results you’re looking for; you need to select the right agency. Here are five factors to take into consideration when thinking about what to look for in a marketing agency:
When searching for a marketing agency, it’s important to consider their values. What are the beliefs and attitudes that drive their business? An agency should listen to you intently, so that in turn they can communicate your brand’s uniqueness in the marketplace. They should be a champion of your industry and lead with respect, open-mindedness and accountability. If an agency has a value statement on their web site, share it with internal stakeholders who are decision makers in the selection process.
2. Experience and Knowledge
Take time to research the agency. Consider how long they have been in business, make note of the types of clients they work with and study their portfolios, blogs and social media channels. Do they share outcomes and measurable results? Do they share thought-leading content? What are their specialties and services? If you’re looking for an agency experienced in digital marketing, but their main expertise is public relations, the overall alignment might not be the best match for your needs.
If your company is in a specific niche, such as medical manufacturing or technology, speak with an agency well versed in that vertical. While an agency with a wide variety of clients across industries is valuable, one that is experienced and understanding of your area’s nuances can make collaboration easier from the start.
When you work with a marketing agency, both your company and the agency must work together. Transparency up front from both parties is crucial. Be clear about your goals and objectives and how much work you’re looking for the agency to do. It’s key to find an agency that will listen to your needs and offer solutions that best serve your unique challenges. Consider how you’ll best work together. Do you prefer regular in-person meetings or is remote support a better fit? It should also be clear from early communications who will be handling your account and what processes and tools are available to make collaboration the best it can be for both the organization and the agency.
4. Long-Term Relationships
When asking the question what to look for in a marketing agency, an important one involves client retention. Search out reviews, look at online portfolios to see track records of successful work with partners and consider reaching out to current clients for their insights and recommendations. A great sign is when an agency is transparent about their average client retention rate. Clients who keep coming back and engaging in new projects is one you’ll want to consider!
5. Strong Communication
Likely from the first conversations with an agency, you’ll get a good sense of their communication style. A clear plan that details how often parties are meeting, how best to share updates and what kinds of results reporting are expected should be established up front. You should also feel comfortable sharing positive feedback and constructive criticism. A partnership works best with honest and respectful communication.
Be clear in how the agency can best communicate with your team (i.e. detailed weekly emails, dashboard reports, a half-hour phone call) and how it’s best to reach you in times of urgency (email versus phone). And vice versa – understand how best to communicate with your agency partner as well to drive success.
An Extension of Your Company
It’s important to know what to look for in a marketing agency when embarking on the search for the right partner. After all, collaborative relationships drive successful results. Making the investment in an agency partner to reach your goals can help your B2B company reach its full potential. If you’re considering using a marketing agency for the first time, we’re here to help. Fill out the form on this page or contact us and let’s talk.
Stifel Marcin – The B2B Marketing Agency
Unlike many advertising and marketing agencies, B2B isn’t just something that we do, it’s all we do. We’ll work to help your brand achieve its goals through the strategic combination of creativity, communication and technology. Our focused client intake processes give us the ability to thoroughly understand your business, products and objectives, working to identify the competitive advantages and opportunities that will grow awareness, leads and sales. We develop innovative marketing plans with strategic, data-driven processes, presenting complex ideas and compelling messages that position your business ahead of the competition. As your cooperative partner, our integrated B2B marketing agency is dedicated to your success. Have more questions about what to look for in an agency? Reach out today and talk to our team.