The marketing mix is a finely tuned recipe requiring quality ingredients and an expert’s touch. Mass catering for your target audience can be fraught with plenty of plate spinning and (sometimes unwanted) fingers in pies. But when is too many cooks too much?
Whether you’re operating as part of an in-house marketing team, or you’re a small business owner looking to make your mark, we guide you through how to manage your marketing strategy and make it a silky outsourced success.
Why should I outsource my marketing?
If you’ve heard about Jack of all trades, then you know he was also master of none. While getting an outside company involved in your marketing activity might seem like a difficult decision at first, appointing an agency to undertake some of the more focused and specialised elements of your strategy, such as PR and SEO, will not only bring fresh ideas to the table, but provide the expertise required to deliver results while taking the load off your shoulders.
Outsourcing is all about freeing up your time, understanding your capabilities and installing professionals in their field to support you in your vision so you can keep your eye on the overall objective – retaining and winning new customers.
How do I find the right marketing agency?
First and foremost, know what you want to achieve from your marketing. Poking around in the dark will be no good if you haven’t any clear objectives for what you want to accomplish and why. Most importantly, make sure you set your budget – this can be monthly, annual or overall – before getting in touch. This is crucial to not only maintaining control of your company expenditure but also serving as a guide for agencies so they can advise on what can realistically be achieved on your behalf.
Once you are armed with this information, it’s worth inviting a handful of different companies to pitch their ideas to you. Good agencies will want a short meeting to discuss your requirements in person before preparing a presentation of their ideas. It’s worthwhile investing your time in this in order to assess a company’s prowess with understanding and interpreting your brief. This will help you to understand an agency’s personality and allow you to make a more informed decision before making any appointments.
How do I know my marketing agency is getting results?
Any marketing agency worth its weight will be happy to make itself accountable by providing regular reports and results of the work they are undertaking on your behalf. By understanding what success looks like to you, and setting clear goals from the outset, including KPIs, you can maintain control of how successful your marketing campaign is and work together to make adjustments and improve areas if necessary.
Your agency should operate as an extension of your own team and communicate with you on a daily, weekly and monthly basis to keep you abreast of the peaks and troughs as they happen. However, be aware that marketing campaigns are rarely an overnight success and often take time, and a bit of flexibility, to operate at the optimum level. We highly recommend regular monthly meetings to go over results and discuss next steps to keep everything well-oiled and running at its full capacity.
What should I use a marketing agency for?
As already mentioned, marketing agencies are full of specialists who are experts in their field. This means if you are already operating in-house social media, for example, you might want help to enhance this activity with a PR and media relations professional. Likewise, if you don’t know where to start with your SEO and PPC, then involving an agency is a cost effective solution for finding the right recruit who has a proven track-record for producing results.
In short, a marketing agency is a great way to tap into the skills and knowledge of individuals who have worked on a wide range of different brands and will bring a different and broader perspective to your business.