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How to Hire an Agency With Confidence

Hiring a digital marketing agency can be overwhelming.

Our clients often come to us feeling confused, frustrated, or stuck.  They don’t really know what they should ask as they evaluate their options and can end up wasting time and money trying to find the right fit.

We get it, and we can help.

We’ve pulled together a simple set of questions for you to use when you’re evaluating any digital marketing agency. Whether you need a new logo or a total brand overhaul, getting the answers will help you hire with confidence, clarity, and ease. (Yessss!)

How To Hire With Confidence

Before you hire a digital marketing agency, you’ll want to do your homework. Ask yourself the following questions:

#1 - Do I like the person I’m talking with?

You might be asking yourself “What’s like got to do with it?”

In a word: everything.

Branding and website projects get intimate quickly. To do a good job, an agency needs to be able to “peek under the hood.” And this can make many people feel vulnerable, so you want to hire someone you like and trust.

If you don’t feel a positive connection with the person you’re talking to, move on.

#2 - Do I like their work?

Make sure the agency shares a portfolio of sample work. You should be able to see this directly on their website.

If what you’re seeing doesn’t resonate for you, share a few examples of what is more aligned with your vision and ask if they can deliver something similar.

This applies to copy, design, development, the overall experience, etc.

And if your gut tells you they can’t, keep searching.

#3 - Do they communicate well and keep commitments?

Clearly communicating with clients and delivering what’s promised are the cornerstones of trust between an agency and a client.

And sure, slip-ups happen. But when they do, do they communicate promptly, let you know when they’re going to do it, and acknowledge the impact their slip has on you?

If you see any red flags in this area, like not replying to an inquiry in a timely manner or missing a call with you, move on.

#4 - Do they have a clear process from start to finish?

When you hire an agency, you should be very clear on how the project will be managed each step of the way.

Ask the agency about their process. Listen for evidence of:

  • Contracts and statements of work with clear deliverables and timelines
  • Clear communication and a process for check-ins
  • A system to manage project management using tools like Basecamp or Asana

If they don’t have a clear process, they’re likely to be harder to work with, and you’re likely to get frustrated.

#5 - Do they spell out what’s included and excluded in their scope of work

Lack of clarity impacts budgets, schedules, final deliverables, and satisfaction.

Here’s an example from a recent client who came to us after working with a different agency:

The client got a proposal from Agency X to redesign its website, including its blog, which had 200 blog posts.

The client reviewed the proposal, saw it included setting up the blog page, and assumed their existing blog posts would be imported and formatted.

The project moved along without a hitch until the client was sent a link to their staging site and saw the blog had been set up with a few dummy blog posts. None of their 200 blog posts had been imported.

When the client asked Agency X where the blog posts were, they were told that importing and formatting them was not part of the scope. Agency X was happy, though, to import them as a change order.

Ultimately, this led to the client feeling unhappy and spending more money than they had budgeted on the additional scope.

If you see any indication that the agency cannot clearly articulate scope, keep looking.

Choosing the right creative partner can turn a process that often feels intimidating and overwhelming into one that is fun, motivating and empowering—and gets you real results.

Want a little help? (Or a lot?) We’re here for you.

Roger That creates the stuff today’s small businesses and non-profits need, from distinctive logos and brand identities to marketing materials and beautiful, high-performance websites. (And we make the process easier, faster, and downright enjoyable.)

We’d be delighted to help you stand out, attract customers, and grow sales.

Schedule a free 20-minute consult call so we can talk about it!