How to find the best advertising agency and digital marketing company for your business
Some businesses are happy with their advertising agency or digital marketing firm, while others are wondering if they can do better.
But how do you know if your organization could grow faster and be more profitable with a different marketing partner? How do you find the best digital marketing agency in Miami and beyond? Below are some thoughts about how to evaluate your current marketing partner, and how to ensure you select the best advertising agency to help grow your business.
Section one – How good is my current digital marketing agency?
Evaluating your advertising and digital marketing agency all comes down to the three P’s – People, Process and Price. How good are their people? Are they using the right process? And are they providing the best value for the money you spend?
Here are some key metrics your advertising agency or digital marketing company should be briefing you on regularly. If they are doing their job, you should have the answers to the questions below.
Since advertising costs vary by industry and target audience, call us with the relevant information from below and we’ll be happy to add some color to the raw data.
Cost – Branding
- What is the cost to reach 1,000 people in your target audience?
- How often does this target audience see your ads – frequency?
- Is it more cost effective to use mass media or digital marketing channels to reach your target audience? Is your media spend allocated appropriately given the difference in cost?
- Are your social media communities and email lists growing at a sufficient pace? Is the agency targeting the right people (demographics and geography) in these channels?
- What are your engagement levels on social and open rates for emails? What’s the benchmark for engagement in your industry?
- What’s the average time a user spends on your website?
Cost – Lead Generation
- What is your cost per lead?
- What is your marketing cost per dollar of revenue generated?
- If you can’t track / answer #2, has your digital marketing agency offered to help you track qualified leads and sales resulting from their leads within your CRM? If not, do they ask you to report back to them as to lead quality?
- What is your most cost effective lead generation channel?
- Which lead generation channel produces the greatest volume of leads?
- Do they buy leads or likes?
- Is your ad agency able to track incoming phone calls from mass media ads by channel and creative? What about phone calls from your website by keyword or social channel?
- Are they able to generate leads via social media channels? Are they more or less expensive than leads from search?
- Do they provide access to your Google Analytics account?
- Do the agency principals touch your account regularly?
- Who works on your account? How long have they been in the advertising and digital marketing industry? How long have they been with the agency?
- Are they responsive? Do they pick up the phone? How long does it take them to get back to you?
- If they offer search engine marketing, are they a Google Partner? Is someone at the agency Google Adwords Certified?
- Who are the copywriters? Is it one person that writes for every client, or do they have access to specialists for specific industries or different types of campaigns? A copywriter that is skilled at creating content for the web may not know how to write a good TV commercial.
- When it comes to designers and developers, just look at their work. Does your agency create visually stunning websites that are easy to use on desktop and mobile? Does your sales staff rave about your sales collateral?
- What type of clients does your advertising agency and digital marketing company have? Does their client roster consist of mostly retailers, accountants, lawyers and doctors, or do they also service consumer brands, resorts, technology companies, financial services firms, hospitals, universities and the like?
- Are your advertising and marketing communications integrated? For example, does your digital marketing agency engage prospects, clients and consumers using appropriate messaging for each stage of the marketing funnel across multiple touch points like email, social, search, mass media and your website to drive targets towards a defined goal?
- Does their marketing team have strategic input on the creative to ensure messaging reflects their insights and objectives? Are the marketers consulted prior to new creative being developed?
- Do your social media posts link back to your website, or do they link to someone else’s content?
- Does your agency recommend new strategies, channels and tactics without being prompted?
- Do they provide a client portal where you can see agency communications, target dates for milestones and project proofs?
- Do you have direct access to designers, writers, developers and marketers working on your account, or are you limited to interacting exclusively with an account manager?
- Do you receive regular updates regarding optimization, trends and measurable results for your marketing campaigns?
- Do they use templates and themes for website development projects, or do they know how to code custom solutions?
- Are website visitors being retargeted?
- Do they provide access to your Google Analytics account?
Section Two – How to find a top advertising and marketing agency
Advertising and marketing is all about people. Smarter, more experienced people with a strong skill set win more often! It doesn’t matter how big the agency is, or how much they charge. Who’s working on your account? It’s really that simple. The right people ensure the right process is in place. And skilled, experienced people are also more likely to create value for your business.
Finding the right people, means finding the best company. Since you can’t possibly meet with every Miami advertising agency or digital marketing firm, here are some tips to narrow the field prior to contacting anyone:
- Is their website engaging, easy to use and visually stunning?
- Do they offer everything your business needs?
- Where do they list on Google for keywords like advertising agency and digital marketing agency (add the city name to your search)?
- How long have they been in business?
- What can you learn from online reviews, Facebook and LinkedIn?
- What kind of clients do they have? Do they service mostly retailers and professional services clients, or does their roster include consumer brands, resorts, hospitals, universities, multi-nationals, and technology companies?
- How good is their work? Does it grab attention and deliver a focused message?
Once you’re ready to make contact, answer these questions:
- Was it easy to contact them? If you used an online contact form, or had to leave a message, how long did it take for someone to get back to you?
- What do their clients say?
- Do they outsource key components of your work?
- Who will be working on your account? How long have they been in the industry, and how long have they been with the agency?
- Will the agency principals be involved? How?
- Will you have access to everyone on the team? Does the digital marketing agency want you to meet them? Can they answer your questions about how they plan to execute the strategy?
- Can the agency project results based on your media budget?
- What’s their process to deliver solutions to meet your objectives? Does it make sense?
There are many other questions you should likely ask that would be specific to your industry and objectives. However, keep in mind that nothing is more important than who will be working on your account.
- Do you have confidence in the people doing the day-to-day work?
- Do they have the expertise and experience needed to succeed?
- Does the advertising agency have a culture and process in place that allows the staff to make recommendations and decisions based on the incoming data from your campaigns?
If the staff has little or no say in what should be done in the trenches with your mass media and digital marketing campaigns, optimization is unlikely something the agency is adequately committed to fulfilling. Your campaigns will likely be on autopilot until you complain or demand action.
And don’t make the mistake of thinking you have to hire a bigger advertising agency, or even one that specializes. Bigger isn’t necessarily better. Again, what matters most is who within this big agency will manage your business. If you end up with a junior team, or if your account doesn’t get the attention it deserves, your advertising and digital marketing campaigns will suffer.
As for advertising agencies that specialize in a particular type of industry or marketing niche – be wary. Either they won’t be able to service all of your marketing needs in an integrated manner, because they are only skilled in a particular discipline such as web development or digital marketing. Or if they specialize in marketing for a specific industry, your work is unlikely to stand out from your competitors. Marketing agencies that specialize like to apply the same formula over and over again. Even worse, they could be managing campaigns for your competition.
If you’re seeking a top advertising agency or digital marketing agency, we invite you to discuss these topics with us in person. We have the right people and process in place to help you succeed where other may have failed.
Contact us today for a free consultation.