How to Select a Digital Marketing Agency


How to select a digital marketing agency?

If you're thinking about hiring a digital marketing agency, it can be hard to figure out which one to choose. There are so many agencies to consider. How do you know which one is best for your business?

What are the Essential Skills of Digital Marketing Agencies?

Digital marketing agencies can take on a variety of responsibilities when you partner with them. Most agencies provide ongoing services such as content development, social media management, search engine optimisation (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, e-mail marketing. SEO should be your top priority because it gives the best return in the long run.

However, next to digital expertise, it is also important to find an agency that understands your market. So that it can help you attract the right prospects and talk to their needs. For example, for technology companies with complicated business ecosystems, it is essential that the agency understands the roles of the various players in the market. Otherwise, you may end-up bidding for the same Google key words as your business partner.

Industry expertise is also essential for a full funnel agency to choose the most effective (digital) channels during each stage of the buying journey.

(For more background on the full funnel approach and why it is more than a just digital campaign, have a look at our white paper.)

ROI: The ultimate question for any digital agency

The most important question to ask an agency during the selection process is to have them present the ROI of their proposed work. This question should trigger an in-depth conversation about your business goals. It will immediately show if the agency understands your business and if they can describe in quantitative terms how do they plan on adding value and growth for your company. Be prepared to answer the agency's questions on your business, including conversion and retention rates and your customer lifetime value. If you don't have historical data, it is best to jointly build a business case based on assumptions that can be tested at a later stage.

Check the Agency References

Good agencies will provide references and information about their past clients. Before you sign with an agency, make sure that you call several of these clients and interview them about their experience with the agency. Do not only ask qualitative questions that are easy to answer, but also probe into the ROI questions.

Also, ask if they agency is easy to work with. Everyone is behaving at its best during the selection process, but are they also nice and easy to work with during the most stressful moments when actually working together?

A Checklist for Selecting a Digital Marketing Agency

Here are the five main questions you should ask potential partners before making a commitment:

  • What industry expertise do you have?
  • How will my ROI be calculated? The answer should obviously include proposed programs, results, and budgets.
  • Can I talk to two of your clients?
  • Who will be on my team to do the actual work?
  • What is your process? How do you monitor and report results?

And if you want to be the agency's preferred client, here is the bonus question:

  • How does your favorite client work with you?

In the end, it is all about people working with people!

About Growth Engine: Growth Engine is a full-service marketing, sales consultancy. At Growth Engine we believe that great ideas and products can only reach their potential through high performance, integrated marketing and sales. We support business leaders with strategic advice and hands-on implementation in brand awareness building, lead generation, consultative sales and we help build partner ecosystems to accelerate your growth. Get a free consultation today: