The Digital Marketing industry as a whole is booming and is predicted to grow further in 2018. Today more consumers are online. Digital is racing neck to neck with other mediums of Marketing.
This in return has resulted in a vast number of digital marketing agencies to crop up in these years. Hence today finding an agency willing to work on your business plan can be a cumbersome task.
Often you would come across topics – Email is Dead, TV is Dead, and many more. It’s pretty obvious that in such steep competitive landscape where in agencies have to sell their own service or business.
The fact is there’s too many agencies giving ideas to a small number of clients who we believe don’t know how to work with an agency. They may be a newbie to digital marketing or an early learner.
Looking forward to 2018
Currently it’s that time of the year when we start wrapping to move forward to a fresh new beginning. In Business terms it’s Q4. 2018 seems to have a lot in stock waiting. Reports from Forrester Research and eMarketer show the estimated allocation of marketing funds offline vs. online and across the digital channels.
Here are some conclusions from that report:
In 2018, the average firm was expected to allocate 41% of their marketing budget to online, and this rate is expected to grow to 45% by 2020
Search engine marketing will capture the largest share of online spend with online display (banner ads, online video, etc.) taking the second largest share
Social media advertising investments will continue to grow, with a 17% compound annual growth rate from 2016 to 2021, and is expected to represent 25% of total online spending in 2018.
Mobile marketing has grown to a point that it’s no longer tracked in the forecast and it’s presumed to be considered across all channels
Digital marketing is pacing at an 11% compound annual growth rate between 2016 and 2021 with the biggest growth occurring in online video.
Investment in paid search, display advertising, social media advertising, online video advertising and email marketing is predicted to account for 46% of all advertising by 2021.
If you’re planning to hire a Digital Agency here’s how to start your Investigation:
# It starts with you
Digital Marketing services are endless. Your business may not require all of them. Services may include
Creative Solutions(from copy writing to video/multimedia production)
Search engine optimization
Social media management/marketing
Search engine marketing
Online advertising in all its forms — LinkedIn promoted posts, Twitter sponsored posts, Google AdSense, etc.
So begin your investigation by knowing your business’s Digital requirements first with your goals and budget in mind
# Digital without Data is Jocular
Marketing is driven by Data and so is Digital. Check your inbox you’ll surely have one or two Emails from Agencies. Observe how many pay head to Data. The question here is “If you don’t understand data how you can deliver bespoke a digital marketing strategy?”
An agency that is not Data Driven cannot achieve great results.
# Present Clients
How many times you’ve been to a cafe on a friend’s recommendation who have been their regular customer? I take your answer as “Yes, Many times”! Well, getting a recommendation from an already existing client isn’t a bad idea.
Know about their present clients. See how the agency is handling their social media pages, websites, blogs, creative, videos, etc. Start meaningful conversations with the linchpins on forums and communities. LinkedIn recommended.
# Be Intuitive
Not all can be great Colleagues but the ones who are, you share a great rapport with them. Probably because of matched ideologies and similar work ethics. Not all are capable of producing great Conversations over a cup of lavazza.
So don’t mind to talk it out at the first go. It’s a great way to know the nature of an agency. You would know how they deal with their daily operations. That would say a lot about their commitment. Being blunt won’t harm, rather you can discover more.
#Quality First Then Price
Price matters irrespective of the size of your business. Under tight budgets it becomes more imperative to choose an agency with flexible pricing options. But most business in the search of flexibility land up sacrificing on the quality quotient. This can be far more damaging.
Well, as once a wise man said –
“If each of us hires people who are smaller than we are, we shall become a company of dwarfs. But if each of us hires people who are bigger than we are, we shall become a company of giants” David Ogilvy
You didn’t build your company in an instant so don’t expect finding the right digital marketing company to be any different. Take your time, do your research, be flexible but be staunch wherever its required. One of the factors not listed above is #the experience of the agency. A good agency should also be certified to operate in your local area.
In business, getting burned by black hat vendors and agencies is common than have sworn to be more particular about the next marketing partner you choose. The above listed techniques will help you get started but later you need to take a deep dive into numbers, ROI, results and more.
Good Luck with your Hunt!