What Your Marketing Team Wants You to Know

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So, you’ve hired or are thinking about hiring a marketing team. How exciting! Marketers are experts in organic website growth, targeting, customer journeys, algorithms, etc. to help your business escalate and stand out from the competition. You’ve answered the baseline questions, and you’re ready to enhance your marketing efforts. We’ve gathered a few tips from the marketer side to help you gain the absolute most out of your working relationship. Here’s what your marketing team wants you to know.

Agencies are an Extension of Your Team

When you hire an agency, you’re adding to your team. These are professional and skilled marketers who help you with strategies, measurement, content, and more. You need to have open communication and keep them frequently updated. Sharing what’s on your marketing agenda will introduce creative brainstorming processes, establish comradery, and save you time. Sample information to share:
  • Company events
  • Internal marketing strategies and goals
  • Target audiences
  • Internal and external company changes
  • Industry norms

Understand What Your Marketing Team is Doing

If you’re currently working with an agency or have an internal specialist, you have likely established the foundation of your goals, visions, and target audiences. That’s great! However, you don’t need to leave it at that. Keep yourself educated and informed about what is behind their strategies and judgments. Actively contribute your thoughts and knowledge about your industry. You’re an expert in your company, and your marketer is an expert in helping your company succeed. Truly grasping the process helps you long-term when establishing future objectives and goals–not to mention grants you confidence in your decisions and approvals.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions

Yes, communication is key. If you have questions about certain decisions, proposals, or processes that the marketer is executing, ask them! You hired them, and they want to help you understand how the strategies work and what the results mean for your business. Marketers don’t hesitate to find out what your pain points are—don’t be afraid to ask what you want to know!

Results Don’t Happen Overnight

While marketers would love to deliver your expectations immediately, it’s not that simple. Behind the success is deliberate campaign building, extensive researching, tailored design, and, in some cases, trial and error (especially in strategies such as inbound marketing).  Include key team members early on during the onboarding process so that your marketer can hit the ground running with solutions. While there’s no guaranteed timeline for success, beginning with critical details or concepts helps save time and money in the long term.

Not All Marketing Plans are The Same

While it’s good to scope out similar businesses’ marketing efforts, don’t obsess over what other companies are doing. You shouldn’t tell your marketer to implement a campaign just because you see your competition doing it. If you’re working with an agency specifically, each of their clients has unique marketing plans depending on several factors.  Some of these may include:
  • Marketing goals
  • Business needs
  • Company values
  • Allocated budget
  • ROI expectations
  • Target audience

Invest in a Marketing Agency, and They’ll Invest in You!

Odds are, you interviewed at least a couple of candidates or agencies throughout the hiring process and you decided on your final choice for a reason. Whether you were impressed by their case studies, felt a genuine connection when chatting, or liked their answers to your concerns, you wanted them as a part of your team.  You’re investing in them, and they’re investing in you by driving results through SEO, sales funnels, social media marketing, website design, etc. Once any concerns are addressed and the onboarding process is complete, your marketing team or individual will know what direction to take, and with open communication, clarity is high.

Hiring a Marketing Agency: The 7 Questions You Should Ask

dog raising paw

Searching for the right marketing agency is a process. We understand—there are a lot of options. How can you know which one is the best? Like any relationship, they need to earn your trust, and you want to feel confident before selecting the right one. Before you grant them the power of connecting with your audience, spending your marketing funds, and accessing your client information, you need to feel assured in your decision. To make the process easier, we assembled the top seven questions you should ask your contenders before hiring a marketing agency.

1. What Are Your Industry Specialties?

Are you a B2B or B2C company? Do you have a niche? While some marketing agencies don’t promote specializing in one area, discussing their most popular industries or projects is worth mentioning. If you want to improve SEO, and the agency focuses primarily on media relations, be sure to keep your goals in mind and not settle if you want an agency that has more experience in your current priorities. 

Having conversations about common client types also allows you to ask if they are currently working with any of your competitors. Knowing possible conflicts of interest at the beginning will prevent potential development or implementation roadblocks that could negatively impact your service.

2. How do you Communicate with Clients?

One of the greatest benefits of working with a marketing agency is having insight into marketers’ perspectives. However, you want to be sure that these suggestions and ideas are being effectively communicated with you.

Even if you’re new to agency business, you have an idea of how often you need updates or what your communication preferences are. Asking for reporting and dialogue habits will help determine if that’s what you want in an agency partnership. Most agencies will listen and correspond to your preferences. That being said, it will be helpful if your priorities align. That way, both sides are comfortable, resulting in more effective processes and results. 

3. How Much Will This Cost?

Yes, talking about money can be uncomfortable. However, these conversations are necessary early on to determine your options. You don’t want to go with the least expensive option because they’re the cheapest, and you also shouldn’t proceed with the most costly if there’s no valid reasoning. 

Describe what you want and ask them what that range looks like, but continue to dig beyond that. Determine how pricing is structured, what resources they’ll utilize, what percentage goes toward efforts vs. billing, etc. Once you have the numbers you’re looking for, compare with a few other finalists and determine what seems the most valuable to you. 

4. What Do I Own before Our Contract Ends?

There are some instances where the client does not own any of the content that the agency developed for them. This could include photography, graphics, coding, or other branded resources that you may assume are yours. It is imperative to discuss this information upfront so that you know exactly what you are agreeing to. Just in case the relationship or project goes awry, you want to know what is legally yours to avoid issues. 

5. Who Will I Be Working with Directly?

Building a foundation with your leading account holder(s) is beneficial for communication, expectations, and trust. Asking who you will be working with allows you the opportunity to research the individuals on LinkedIn and discover their professional background, including experience and longevity. While newer executives shouldn’t be discarded, it may give you peace of mind to find senior team members who will assist you with your account.  

6. Can I see Your References?

Just like when you’re shopping online or deciding on a restaurant, reviews and photos give you what you need in your decision-making process. In your agency decision process, request case studies, testimonials, and examples that they find valuable. If ROI is important to you, ask specifically for projects with metric-centered results, like audience growth and CTA conversion. If you’re re-branding or need graphic design assistance, focus on visible transformations, like logo or website portfolios. 

7. What Are Your Expectations of Your Clients?

Is there a limit on revisions? Are there certain times that are off-limits? When is an appropriate turnaround time for approval? Talking about expectations for you as a client helps you distinguish how much or little you want to be involved or if your priorities coordinate. 

At the end of the day, you’re the client, and they are working for you. If their expectations aren’t reasonable for you, don’t settle. There are plenty more fish in the sea. 

Bonus: Ask yourself: What does my gut say?

We sometimes tend to ignore gut feelings, and we usually regret that. Maybe an agency looks good on paper, but you lack the chemistry with your account executive. Don’t dismiss your intuition, even if your brain is thinking something else. 

Throughout the process, you’ll learn the agency’s values, culture, and leadership, and you will quickly find out if there are certain details that you can’t get past. Trusting your instincts will only lead to better opportunities. 

Thinking About Hiring a Marketing Agency?

Hiring a marketing agency involves many factors, and it can be daunting signing the dotted line. We want you in the right marketing hands just as much as you do. Green Apple Strategy helps companies strategically tell their stories and successfully implement their goals through our comprehensive set of services. Schedule a consultation today. We would love to see if we’re the right fit for you!