Many businesses struggle with a lack of in-house expertise and skills, especially when it comes to digital marketing.
They have project managers writing blogs, or interns moderating technical webinars. The poor marketing manager wears so many hats, a typical day may cause heads to spin…
More and more businesses are turning to outside resources to fill gaps in their digital marketing strategy. Rather than hire employees that target specific needs, they use the flexible resources of a specialty service, often for less cost and higher quality than taking the project in-house.
In this article, we’ll look at five things your business should do to ensure you’re maximizing the benefit of your agency relationship and getting the highest ROI possible.
What Are Digital Marketing Agencies and Specialty Services?
Among some businesses, there is a negative perception of agencies.
Agencies get a bad name. Some businesses insist agencies never meet the promises of the project. They imagine their bills are filled with overhead charges.
Not every project will be a success, and some fees can quickly skyrocket, especially when change orders are needed to manage scope changes.
This isn’t the norm for most projects, and most businesses quickly see the benefit from the specialty service, especially when they see the agency as a business partner rather than a high-priced tool.
Here’s how you can make the most from an agency relationship.
Getting the Most from Your Agency Relationship
Trust and respect are key in finding success with an agency. Never work with an agency, or team, that you don’t feel like you can trust. Let’s look at a few other tips you can use to maximize your businesses benefit from an agency:
1) Collaborate and Set Goals
At the beginning of any project, you should collaborate with your agency partners to set goals. Link the project goals to your business goals. Determine exactly what you need from agency, and if the agency isn’t asking you (constantly) what your goals are, then you may not have the right partner.
It’s worth having an honest discussion on project expectations and possible impediments. This will not only help define the project but set your business and the agency up for success.
2) Set Milestones in the Schedule
No project ever runs perfectly smoothly. There will always be problems and challenges. Success depends on how well you manage those challenges. This is where milestones can help.
Many projects fail because problems weren’t addressed early. The final product is rushed out the door to meet a deadline. Setting milestones will allow early evaluations, so you have time to adjust work as needed. Problems can be identified and solved before it is too late. You, and your business, end up with a better final product.
3) Select Resources to Work with the Agency
You may hire an expert writer or a fantastic developer from the agency, but no outside resource will ever be the expert you are when it comes to your business.
Before the project begins, assign internal resources and employees to support the agency. Make sure they have the time, and permission, to answer questions and support the project when a need arises. Internal resources ensure a better final product.
4) Maintain Open Communication
It’s easy to get wrapped up in day-to-day tasks and forget that you have another ongoing project. That is a mistake that can come back and hurt you.
Open, regular communication is critical. You know the project is on track, and the agency knows you are available. Remember, you are building a relationship with the agency, and communication is key.
5) Evaluate Progress and Provide Feedback
You and the agency are focused on improving your business. Don’t be afraid to let them know if you see a problem or have concerns. Keep track of the goals you set at the beginning of project. Make sure you stay focused, or are making adjustments as needed.
Once the project is done, it’s a good idea to run a post-mortem to evaluate what went well and what could have been improved. Don’t see it as a grade, but as an opportunity to continually improve.
Getting Started with Agency and Specialty Services Resources
Don’t let fear or misconceptions hold you back from utilizing outside resources on a project, especially when it comes to digital marketing.
Often agency resources are just what your business needs when it comes to optimizing your ROI for a project and increasing the value of marketing efforts. With careful planning and a focus on building a relationship, you can turn a short-term transaction into a long-term benefit for your business.
To learn more, or see how digital marketing agencies can help your business, contact the experts at GO2 Partners today.