January 27, 2020

Top Questions You Should Ask Before Hiring a Marketing Agency

Considering hiring a marketing agency? We’ve compiled a list of questions to help you ensure that they’re a good fit for your company and will bring real value to your brand.

Questions To Ask The Agency:

Before you leave your brand in the hands of a low-quality agency or inexperienced freelancers, make sure to ask them these questions first!

Who is your ideal client?

Reason: To confirm that they are experienced working with companies like yours.

Is the agency a generalist? Or do they have specialized skills and tactics for specific industries and business types? This is particularly important because the agency will spend less time getting onboarded to your business and have plenty of experience to draw from, meaning you will get better results faster. They’ll also have templates and tools relevant to your marketing needs. You can also be confident that their internal training and professional development will be more relevant to you as a business.

Red Flag: If they are unable to describe an ideal customer or say something along the lines of “we work with anyone.”

How do you measure success?

Reason: To ensure that their efforts will help you achieve your actual business goals.

What is their process of setting goals? How do they track their progress towards those goals? What kind of reporting can you expect to receive as a client?

Red Flag: If they focus on vanity metrics, such as saying “we’ll get you a certain # of likes or followers” and don’t mention leads, sales or some kind of new business metric, then their eye isn’t on the right end result.

What are your project and account management processes?

Reason: To confirm that they are organized and timely in their project delivery.

How do they keep their tasks organized? Do you get a dedicated account manager? Understanding who your main contact is when you have questions or would like to provide feedback on your project is important when working with an agency, especially when you’re aiming towards a specific deadline.

Red Flag: If there is not a defined point of contact at the agency for your project, or if their project management processes don’t sound organized.

Can I see previous work + the results + a testimonial?

Reason: To make sure that their work delivers tangible results and that working with them will likely be a good experience.

Anyone’s portfolio can be crafted to look good. This doesn’t necessarily mean they helped their clients achieve their goals or that that client had a good experience working with them.

Red Flag: If the agency can’t speak to specific results, or won’t give you contacts from previous projects.

What are recent marketing trends you’ve seen that would affect my business/industry?

Reason: To gauge their overall knowledge and experience surrounding the marketing landscape as it applies to your specific business or industry.

They should live and breathe marketing and have no problem answering this. It will also help you gain perspective on where they see the industry heading and if it aligns with the kind of marketing activities you see your business heading towards.

Red Flag: If they hesitate or say they would need to do additional research.

What is the process for proposals, contracts, deposits, etc.?

Reason: To check if the mechanics of the relationship are clearly defined in writing, seem fair to you, and align with your business activities.

You’ll want to know how sign-offs and approvals are handled as well as deposits and payment terms. It is also important to know the process for ending the relationship with the agency, for example knowing how much notice is needed to be given.

Red Flag: If there are no written agreements, policies surrounding sign-offs, or defined payment terms.

Who owns the assets created for my company?

Reason: To assess if you will lose any work if your partnership with the agency were to end.

When working with a marketing agency or web development company, it’s important to ask them who will retain ownership of the source files once the project is complete. Some agencies retain ownership of your files or require you to pay monthly licencing fees for your website. This could prevent you from contracting another agency to work on your website at a later date. 

Red Flag: If you only are permitted access to your source files as long as you are in partnership with the agency.

Marketing professionals consisting of web designers, strategists, writing, and account managers around a boardroom table

Find The Right Marketing Agency For Your Company

At Reaction, we always want to make sure it’s a great partnership from the start so we can help you make confident, informed decisions that put you ahead of the competition!

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