If you are overwhelmed with business, outsourcing your marketing might sound like a quick fix. It can help, but only if you select the right team for your organization. Here are 11 questions to ask before making your selection.
About the Agency
1. What expertise does your team have?
Be sure that the agency has a variety of skill including web design, search engine optimization, social media, content development, advertising, and graphic design. If you are going to outsource, you want someone that can offer you the complete package.
2. How long have you been in business?
This is a fundamental question that can tell you a lot. If the firm is new, that doesn’t mean you can’t give them a chance. But, be sure to ask about the experience level of the team. If the business has been around for a while, ask for references from past clients. Also, consider asking how long the employees have been on staff.
3. Who will be working with us?
Make sure you meet the entire team, especially the individual you will be working with the most.
4. What results have you had with other clients?
The agency should be able to give examples of what has worked in the past immediately. If they are not confident in their responses, look elsewhere.
5. How do you stay in touch with the latest trends?
The marketing world is forever changing, and you need to make sure your agency is keeping up with the latest tools and trends. Ask the company what their team does to stay ahead of the game.
6. How do you develop your strategy?
The agency you select should have a defined process for creating your marketing strategy. This process should include things like competitive analysis, keyword research, website audit, and editorial calendar production. If they can’t explain their process, the agency may be too inexperienced. And, always make sure the firm is developing a specific plan for you. Marketing is not one size fits all.
7. What ideas do you have for my organization?
An agency should be able to give you some marketing ideas during your first meeting, even if they have to ask a few follow-up questions to get there. This is a good way to see how the agency interacts with each other and with you.
8. How will you keep me informed?
Regular communication is necessary. You need to know what the agency is doing, and the agency needs to know what is going on inside your organization. Ask what they communicate and how often. This is not a one-way street, though; make sure someone in your organization will be available when the agency has questions.
9. How do you measure success?
A good answer will always include the word conversion. Marketing is all about getting a potential customer to do something like sign up for an email, buy a service or call for more information. Other possible answers include things like website traffic, keyword rankings, follower count, and traffic sources.
10. How long before we see results?
Marketing is a process. It takes time to figure out the most effective keywords, the best time to send emails, and the types of content that get the most interaction. You will see some results in three to four months, but typically it is more like six to 12 months. It takes time to identify the strategy that works for your organization.
11. What happens if the strategy isn’t working?
A good agency admits that some things may not work. They also assure you that they are watching the metrics behind their strategy and will adjust the plan if necessary.
There you go - 11 questions to ask if you are interviewing a marketing agency. Keystone would love to answer these for you if you are thinking about outsourcing your marketing. Let’s set up a time to talk.