Through our experience as Phoenix marketing agency working with hundreds of clients here at Nuanced Media, we have identified a few particularly concerning red flags. If any of the following occur while interviewing a digital marketing agency, we urge you to make sure you are absolutely confident with them before you sign on the dotted line. Bad marketing agencies are easy to run into, but we want to make sure you avoid them at all costs.
1. Beware of Marketing Generalist
When dealing with a B2C or B2B digital marketing agency be sure to know what they specialize in; whether it be SEO, PPC, Content Management, etc.. While a marketing generalist is not always a bad thing, you want a master in the service you are seeking.
2. Industry Specialist
Are you in the medical industry, but are working with a digital marketing agency that has only worked in the tourism industry? Probably not the best idea. It’s important to work with an agency that has experience in your field and knows exactly how to market for it.
3. Can They Write Content?
Content Management and Value-Added Content are some of the best industry standards for digital marketing. Is the agency you are working with writing content for their clients? If not, it might be time to keep searching for your marketing partner.
4. Social Media Activity
When working with a digital agency, you want someone who is active on all social media platforms – not just a single post here and there. Are they connecting with fans on social media? Or not even bothering to reply to comments, not giving retweets, or not following other companies on Linkedin?
5. Search Engine Rank
One of the biggest parts of hiring a digital marketing agency is to get your SEO rank high on those Google search results pages. But are they drinking their own Kool-Aid? If your digital marketing agency isn’t coming up organically for SEO, how do you know they will succeed with your company.
6. No Testimonials
You wouldn’t buy a pair of $50.00 boots without looking at reviews, so why wouldn’t you do the same with your marketing agency? Agencies with no testimonials or worse, negative testimonials should be avoided. Happy customers leave positive reviews, so no or negative reviews is never a good thing.
7. Speaking, Not Listening
No company is the same – an agency really needs to listen to your needs instead of telling you what you need. A good marketing agency should be your partner in your endeavours, but by not listening they will not learn what’s best for your business and industry.
8. Are They Doing Their Homework?
Your first time meeting your prospective agency thorough research should already be done. To show that they are worth your time, they should know your current SEO Rank, your competitors, and special keywords that will work best for you. If they come into a meeting and are asking you for this information, it may be time to pack your bags.
9. Backup Data
Does your agency have compelling data to back up everything they are saying? Can they physically show you successful marketing campaigns, downloadable Value Added Content they’ve created, or other results? A successful marketing agency should always be able to prove their worth through previous work.
Are your marketers certified? There are many different certifications an agency needs to show they actually know what they are talking about. Are they certified for Hubspot Inbound or Adwords? It’s always good to know what your marketing agency is capable of and if they have taken the needed steps to show their dedication.
Regardless if you have signed on with your agency or not, you always should be on the lookout for your agencies proactivity. Did they send you an email even after the first time you spoke to them? Did they follow up with an overview of what you discussed and possible next steps for your business? Are they actively taking notes and are they available to discuss marketing objectives at the press of the Send button? Your marketing agency should be your partner and should always be at the ready with updates.