In today’s constantly shifting markets, many companies decide not to invest time and resources training marketing personnel, perfecting SEO methods, embarking on large-scale online campaigns, or writing content for a variety of channels and media types. In looking for external marketing agencies to accomplish their marketing and sales strategy, businesses are looking for the optimum mix of services, a clearly defined work process, accurate measurements, strong project-management skills and, last but not least, proven experience.
360-degree view of all marketing needs and goals
A good marketing agency should carefully analyze the needs of the company, product or service being promoted, the marketing goals, the strategy, and the target audiences. They must be experts in the market where the company operates, be it IT, high-tech, biotechnology or medical sciences. They must build together with the customer an optimal marketing plan with clear and measurable objectives that is the right fit for the specific business. Whether digital or traditional, inbound or outbound, the perfect marketing agency must also have in-depth understanding, knowledge and expertise of the most current marketing channels and media.
A good marketing agency should be able to educate the market. Ideally, it should have a clear stepped methodology according to which potential target audiences go through several ‘stations’. At the end of the process, they should have learned enough about a company, product or service to reach the engagement stage.
Educating the market involves several dimensions, including content, process and marketing channels. The prospect marketing agency should be able to analyze and work on each to maximize results and increase exposure.
The education process should yield clear and measurable objectives:
- Awareness – the target audience becomes aware of the product or service
- Education – potential customers learn more about the product or service
- Overcoming concerns and objections by providing clear facts and benefits and answering questions
This education practice should convey the right message, to the right people, at the right time.
Structured process methodology
A killer marketing agency should offer a clear, structured, almost scientific marketing methodology. Marketing experts should have the skillsets required from an entire marketing department.
From definition of the objectives, target audience and channels, through delineation of the activities in each channel and preparation of the required content, to lead generation, acquisition and measurement, the process should be clear, precise and virtually foolproof.
Taking a lead-acquisition process as an example, it should have a clear path – understand the essence of what the customer wants to promote and gain, develop the proper channels (digital or otherwise) to present suitable content, and then decide when and how to take optimum advantage of each. Obviously, none of these can be accomplished without in-depth knowledge and experience in B2B marketing, digital marketing, inbound marketing and/or traditional marketing.
From A to Z, everything should be measurable
As soon a marketing campaign is conceived, everything in it becomes measurable. Is the content good enough? Is it driving sufficient awareness to the product or service being promoted? Has website traffic increased? Has LinkedIn proved beneficial as a key social-media channel? Have the webinar and events conducted reached the target registration and attendance rates? Is the cost per lead on target?
The questions are infinite. The methods to measure success or failure are infinite too. A good marketing agency should spare no effort to make sure that each marketing endeavor and campaign is as successful, or even more successful, than the one before.