Saving time is one compelling reason to team up with a digital partner, but there are many other reasons to do so. Aside from ensuring that project deadlines are met, a solid partnership can also provide new professional insights and a different set of resources, all of which can translate to an improved experience for your clients. Knowing what to consider and what a partnership could mean for your business can help you make a confident choice.
So what are some of those Pain Points?
How Does the Digital Agency Determine Its Strategy?
Strategy is the primary pain point of most campaigns because it sets the stage for how all responsibilities will be carried out. Ask a potential partner to describe its typical strategy. Most digital agencies have a set of guidelines.
Are You on the Same Page?
It helps to work with an agency that matches your approach to doing business. Request samples of the company’s work to get a better idea of whether or not your styles will match. Does the digital agency have a diverse enough portfolio? Are its goals aligned with yours? What about the attitude that it projects through its website or other online engagements? All of these factors can determine how comfortable you’re likely to be with a new partner.
How Would the Digital Agency Evaluate or Improve Your Strategy?
Your digital partner is likely to be involved with both new and ongoing projects and campaigns. Find out what the company thinks of your strategy guidelines and how it would improve what you’re already doing. Most potential partners, at least those worth considering, will be able to find room for improvement somewhere. How would the agency evaluate your current setup and approach to client interactions? Get specific and expect specifics in return.
How Adaptive Is the Agency?
If you’re looking at a digital agency that has a slightly different approach to handling client needs, get a feel for how adaptive the company is in terms of meeting yours. Is the staff willing to compromise and find a happy medium with regard to how tasks are completed? How will the agency customize campaigns to the needs of your clients and the markets you normally serve? Ask for examples of how this has been accomplished with other partners.
How Involved Will the Agency Be?
Will the staff simply do what’s asked and call it a day? If you prefer minimal involvement from a partner, this may be just fine. On the other hand, you may prefer a partner that will monitor each stage of a project and check in with you on a regular basis and not just on the pieces they are working on.
How Does the Agency Use Analytics?
Most digital agencies are pretty good with analytics. Just make sure that the company you choose will track the stats that are likely to matter. Ask how often data is monitored and how the company measures the success of a campaign. What stats does it consider to be the most important? Every digital agency approaches analytics differently. Your new partner could focus on monitoring data that you don’t usually consider a major factor, or it may analyze results differently. This could be good news for your clients, who will likely benefit from a more comprehensive approach to data analysis. Your new partner may also have access to software and systems that you don’t use due to their cost and a steep knowledge of how to integrate them.
Now that we have a few of the pain points identified and some benchamarks of what to look for, what are the advantages of the partner relationship?
Ability to Attract New Clients
It’s entirely possible that a new digital partner will be an added selling point for new clients. If you have a partner that has a reputation for excellence in a certain area, such as project strategy, that’s likely to be something that will appeal to new clients – or even existing clients who are looking to throw more work your way. A partner with a steep history of delivering projects for world class brands and local brands as a part of the ad agency process can be the focal point of a good sales strategy to break through with a new relationship.
Broaden Your Horizons
You and your new digital partner don’t have to be like two peas in a pod. In fact, you’ll likely benefit from a partner that has a different way of approaching some things. Review samples of a potential partner’s work to get a better idea of where the company tends to go creatively. Take a look at the partner’s culture and see what they are about. Does it align with yours? Think of it as hiring a new member of your staff. While you want a partner that is going to be somewhat in line with how you approach projects, you also want a company that can bring fresh ideas to the table.
Offer New Strengths
Take a look at what specific areas of digital marketing or production a potential partner is especially adept at handling. An effective digital partner is one that can enhance what you already offer. For example, your partner may have extensive experience with social media marketing. Added strengths can only benefit your clients and serve to extend your capabilities deck.
Eliminate Staffing Headaches
Hiring staff members to handle increased client demands brings on a whole new set of headaches. In addition to the time that it takes to train them, there’s the added stress of increasing your payroll and other expenses involved with the hiring process. You need to have a thorough understanding of digital design and development to make a good hire in the first place. When you partner with a digital agency, you have access to talented individuals without having to worry about recruiting, screening, hiring, mentoring, and training.
Starting and maintaining in-house marketing strategies and production team can be difficult. If your staff members juggle many hats, you may have one person who handles an account one week and another person who responds to an unexpected issue for that same client the following week if the other employee is busy launching a campaign for another client. Such inconsistency could mean that some clients receive a little less focus than others. A digital agency will give your clients consistent attention throughout the duration of your professional relationship.
Every digital agency approaches analytics differently. Your new partner could focus on monitoring data that you don’t usually consider a major factor, or it may analyze results differently. This could be good news for your clients, who will likely benefit from a more comprehensive approach to data analysis. Your new partner may also have access to software and systems that you don’t use due to their cost and a steep knowledge of how to integrate them.
Dive in Where Needed
A reliable agency will have knowledgeable staff members who are familiar with all stages of campaign management and production. From determining the initial scope to launching campaigns and tracking results, a reliable agency will be able to jump in at any point of a campaign. This versatility is sure to be appreciated if you’re managing multiple accounts. They will also have team that can if needed right the ship. Sometimes a project can go completely off the rails and need a steady hand to step in and get it back on track, this is a skill that is rare and can be indelibly useful. The ability to spool up on a project quickly and be able to find the issues is a lost art.
Before selecting a digital partner for your advertising agency, weigh your options and evaluate your needs. Communicate with the partner you’re considering to see how your personalities and strategies mesh since you will likely be working together on a fairly regular basis. Ask specific questions to get feel for how a partnership may work out, what the digital agency would likely be able to contribute, and how the company could make your agency more attractive to new and existing clients.
Are you looking for a new digital partner? Contact us today for more details.