Hiring a Social Media Advertising Agency: Best Practices Guide

How do you choose a digital marketing consultancy that’s going to be the right fit for your business?

This can be a difficult task given agencies offer an array of marketing services. The online marketing and lead generation landscape has drastically changed in recent years. 

So many people I speak with feel that they’ve been unable to achieve their online marketing goals in the past and they’ve now become skeptical and wary of engaging with marketing agencies.

This issue of choosing the right digital marketing partner can be solved ahead of time by asking the right questions and checking for fit beforehand. More importantly, it’s also important for business owners to understand and be clear on your own business needs ahead of partnering with a marketing agency.

Prospective clients we speak to often don’t have the slightest clue about what types of questions they should be asking their digital marketing provider before engaging them.

In this article, you will find some guiding principles that can help qualify an agency before taking the leap and jumping into bed together!
Firstly, let’s get your ducks in a row!

Know your numbers & goals
It is important to know your numbers and be clear on them so you can manage the outcomes that best fit for yourself. Do you have a good understanding of the amount of enquiries come in per month, how many deals are closed each time period (or seasonally) as well as revenue generated by your business? If not – it’s perfectly understandable! Just remember, the better you know your business the more likely your agency will be able to help you achieve your goals.

We’ve created an epic resource to help with this. Click here for our Advertising ROI Calculator. This will help you to plug in your goals and see what your ROI could look like from your advertising campaign before investing any further time or money!

Specialists vs. Generalists Marketing agencies

Digital marketing can be painted with a broad paintbrush sometimes. It is good to understand what the difference between the two types of agencies are and also weigh out the pros and cons when it comes to hiring specialists vs. generalist marketing agencies for your business needs.

Specialist Agencies
Typically specialise on a particular type of platform e.g. Google, Facebook or Programmatic. An additional bonus can be if they have proven results & experience in certain industry niches.

Pros: They are experts in their field, the platform knowing the ins and outs to help you achieve the best possible results. A specialist agency will also have deeper processes built around achieving solid results on that platform across niches and also within their specialty niches.

Worth considering: This means that you do not get a one stop shop or one point of contact to run all of your marketing campaigns from start to finish.

Maybe the convenience trade-off is worth it for better results?

Generalist Agencies
Generalist agencies do it all from branding, SEO, websites and everything in between.
Pros: You only have to deal with one agency, one person and their team can help you with everything you need. It might save you costs, being a one stop shop for everything.

Cons: They lack depth of knowledge and processes in all the various areas they service. If you would like to excel at one platform or an area of digital marketing they typically underperform.

Seek Demonstrated Experience
Choose a digital marketing agency that has demonstrated experience in your industry and within the specific industry niche that you operate. If you’re unsure about whether or not a digital marketer understands your industry and the niche you operate within, ask them for a relevant case study or client testimonial.

An agency that backs themselves usually has a methodology that they can apply to your businesses to achieve repeatable, scalable results.

Discovery Process & Red Flags!
When you first met with them, did they ask you lots of questions about your business and your goals? Did they try to qualify your needs against the services they offered? Or were they just trying to sell their business to you without actually taking the time to understand your business and your goals first? Or if they can actually help you achieve results!

Transparency is key for a long term relationship with your new business partners. Here are some key questions on what to ask your prospective agency when you speak to them:

  • Will I be able to pay Google or Facebook directly for your advertising spend? This allows you to be across what portion of your total investment goes to your marketing agency and what goes to the advertising platform.
  • Will you run my ads from my account or create a new one? It’s good to own your ad account and have your agency run ads from your account so that you can own all the data and learnings that you’ve paid for.
  • How can I be sure that you do not share my lead lists or data with other clients? One way to avoid this is to own the access to your email lists, and ad accounts. You will also gauge a good understanding when you uncover the values and ethics of the agency you speak with.
  • What is included in the service offering? It is important to set clear expectations and have a good understanding of what you are paying for and what will be delivered. If you are unsure, make sure you clarify.

I hope this article has helped to provide some valuable insights into what to look for when choosing a service provider for digital marketing. By following our tips and taking the time to do your research, you’re sure to find a partner that can help take your business to the next level.

About Searchbox
We are a specialist Social Media Lead Generation agency. We’re passionate about helping businesses world-wide to reach more of their ideal customers. In a world flush with data and hyper-targeted advertising opportunities, we build and manage highly efficient lead generation solutions that save our clients time and money.

If you’re tired of achieving inconsistent results, relying on word of mouth referrals or spending your precious time at ‘networking’ events, it may be time to look into our RAPID™ Methodology.

If you’re wanting high-quality enquiries from your online advertising investment, then we want to hear from you.