Top tips when looking for marketing and advertising support

With so many advertising and marketing agencies out there, how do you go about finding the right one for you? We decided to ask this very same question to a wide range of businesses and that use agency and below is what they came back with as words of advice for any business owner out there who is thinking now’s the time to reach our for some advertising and marketing support.

Hire an advertising agency because you like its people, don’t just go off its previous reputation

People buy from people they like and trust. Hands down this has been the number one thing that businesses have told us. Reputation and years in the industry are certainly hygiene factors but the people you deal with day-to-day, their personal ethics, their attitude to hard work, their individual skills, the support they have around them and above them and also the agency’s overall culture are what you should be looking out for.

Usually what happens in an agency pitch is that the client will meet the senior people who are skilled in selling the agency and once the account is won, they then get handed over to a new team. So, when you make contact with an agency, make sure from day one on the first introduction that you get to meet the team and key personnel you’ll be working with on a day-to-day basis.

Ensure the agency is the right fit with what you want to achieve

If you’re just after a rebrand or looking to launch a new business you’ll need a very different agency than if you are looking to target niche audiences and get ‘bums on seats’. Yes there are ‘full service agencies’ out there that can do it all, but recognise where the agency you are looking at strengths lie and utilise them for that… if your needs change don’t be afraid to look for another agency rather than get your current agency to try and be a square peg in a round hole.

In short, you wouldn’t ask a web design agency to create a TV advert and it’s unlikely a branding agency will develop you an effective eCRM campaign. A good agency will be open to working in collaboration with other agencies and each should recognise, encourage and be respectful of each others strengths… if you can find that mix of the right agencies then marketing success is heading your may.

Location no longer matters

If the global pandemic has taught us all one thing, it’s that effective working can easily take place using remote working tools like Teams, GoToMeeting and Zoom. More and more clients are telling us that location isn’t an issue, they’d rather have the right people and skills looking after their marketing than someone close by who isn’t as good.

At OTB we have clients throughout the UK as well as in the middle east, USA and far east. to them location isn’t an issue. As long as they pay a fair price and receive excellent, effective and creative solutions then as far as they are concerned we could be on another planet. Which is good to know as if Elon Musk has his way we may be opening an office on Mars in the next 20 years time.

The lowest price doesn’t mean it’s the best agency for you

Every agency has different overheads and this will usually be reflected in their rate card. usually what you’ll find is that many agencies operate a pretty similar rate card too… and the cost of things are usually pretty similar. So if a quote comes in that’s a lot less than the others, it could be too good to be true.

We recently took on a client who had been seduced by another agency’s low prices for a website, but then suddenly found out that for every update they needed to do on the site they could only use said agency. Then they suddenly realised, why the initial price was so low.

Always remember a fair price is better in the log run, a low price will usually come with some catches… and if there’s no catch you’ll probably find the quality of the work isn’t as good.

Make sure the agency has a vision for you and your business

You’re hiring an agency because you want to grow something. No one ever hired an agency to help them stand still and stagnate. When speaking to an agency, ask them this question:

“Where will your agency take me and my business and how will you help me grow and succeed?”

See what they come back with. See if they take the time to understand you, your market, your customers and ensure they have a clear and focussed vision for how to take you to where you want to be.

Then you’ll have the right agency partner for you.

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