There definitely has been a paradigm shift in the marketing scene; the Internet has brought in a new way of thinking and subsequently, a challenge for brand marketers to identify the right marketing agency. While traditional marketing agencies have been around for a while, digital agencies are now dotting the landscape offering a wide spectrum of services, from search engine marketing to social media to content marketing. The growing complexity of the agency ecosystem raises a key question for brand marketers: How do we pick the best agency (agencies) to suit our evolving needs and reach a changing customer base?
To start off, let’s draw the line: digital marketing doesn’t replace traditional marketing, it compliment – adds meat to the bone. Digital marketing while embracing emerging technologies doesn’t forget the fundamentals which are still engraved in the traditional approaches. Further, it provides more affordable and measurable metrics for executing your marketing campaigns. Any marketing agency worth their salt will advise you so.
And as you narrow down to the partner with whom to work to meet your marketing needs and grow your business, look at these three factors:
A philosophy degree might be worthless today, but it’s important to work with an agency that has motivating beliefs and principles that underlie the formation and operation of their business. Also important is to make sure your philosophy also aligns with that of the agency.
The importance of a business philosophy? Winking at a girl in the dark and hoping she will take note of you, is what it’s exactly trying to do business without a clear mission, vision – philosophy. And you as the girl, sorry brand marketer, you definitely don’t want to get in a serious relationship with a guy who doesn’t plan to marry you.
Plugin the new into the old is what makes a marketing agency stand out. Digital marketing while embracing emerging technologies it doesn’t forget the fundamentals which are still engraved in the traditional approaches. Each marketing channel/initiative should be integrated. From billboards to phone calls to emails, Facebook, YouTube to the web pages. Further, silo mentality within departments should be eliminated such that the marketing model employed significantly involves the organization.
This is why it’s important to select a multi-channel digital agency. An agency that understands the scope and what it takes to run campaigns on various platforms from search to social media and display.
Research allows the agency to understand the market and your business, suggest and implement innovative digital solutions that give you a competitive edge. For instance, valuable research will allow the agency to answer some important questions like:
- What are your business goals for this campaign?
- What is your market segment like – demographics, location, buying power?
- What channels are most applicable to your audience?
- Why is nobody responding to your emails, tweets, posts and calls?
And so on.
The value of this exercise cannot be downplayed – it’s the difference between success and failure.