We’re days away from 2018. As you bustle in and out of stores grabbing those last minute Christmas gifts (or start your shopping) take some time to think about what 2018 will look like for your business. If growth is on your list of goals, be it through the launch a new product or just better marketing, you need to partner with the right people to make that happen.
Choosing a marketing agency to work with is a big decision. Before you sign on any dotted lines, make sure you fully scope out the shop — and their competition — to ensure a good fit.
We know what you’re thinking, ‘The best fit is the one that fits my budget.’
Price point is absolutely important but if that’s the only factor you consider, be prepared to be left short changed. Here are some other aspects you need to take into account.
Consider the portfolio
Take a look at other work this agency has done. If you want someone who can give you a website that’s as intuitive as it is pretty but don’t like any of their previous work, chances are you won’t like what they deliver for you. Most agencies have a style. You need to make sure their style fits yours.
Consider their professionalism
The time it takes for someone to respond to your initial email or call is an indictor of the type of client service you’re going to get once you sign on to a project. You might not set up a project planning call within 24 hours but you should hear something back within that time.
How do they conduct themselves in initial meetings and on the phone? Ask yourself if you are comfortable working with this person for a long period of time. Are they receptive to your suggestions and ideas? Do they answer your questions clearly? After a meeting or phone call you should feel excited, motivated and confident — and so should they.
Consider their knowledge
The best way to judge a person’s knowledge is if they can explain the concept/solution/issue in laymen terms. It takes true understanding to be able to explain something.
Ask questions, get their opinions, get an idea of how they are going to deliver on your needs. If there’s a lot of hmmmm-ing and ahhh-ing that might be an indication of what’s to come.
Consider the future
What your business needs from a marketing angle at the start of 2018 might not be the same by the end of the year, or the next. When sleuthing out a marketing and design partner, look for a shop that is multifaceted. Do they do social? Do they do print? Do they do web? Can they provide content? A one-stop-shop that you can grow with is what you should aim for.
Whether you go with a big firm or a boutique agency, the same rules apply. Before you put your business in their hands, make sure they can carry the weight and are ready to be long-term partners.