I’ve switched roles at Leading Results and love it! I spend my time talking with people to see how we can help them grow their business.
Over the last few months, I’ve heard a recurring theme – “I worked with an SEO company/website company/marketing agency, etc. and it started out great. We talked and they kept me in the loop and then … radio silence after about three months. I don’t feel like I got any value for the money I spent.”
Holy moly! Why aren’t they insisting on monthly reports and dialog with their account rep? One person I spoke to said they were charged an hourly fee just to discuss what the agency had accomplished for them.
Before you decide to hire someone to help you with your marketing, there are a few questions you should ask to make sure you’re working together effectively and you understand what you’re getting for your money.
How will you communicate?
I believe it’s crucial to have once a month pow-wows to go over monthly reporting. It can be face-to-face, using a video chat tool like Skype/FaceTime, or just on the regular old telephone, but it really should happen at least once a month. Personally, I prefer twice a month to be absolutely sure things are going in the right direction and that the client has everything they need from us and vice versa. You can’t just sign a contract and walk away from the agency, organization, or business you’re working with – they may know marketing, but you know your business; the more committed you are to regular communication, the more you get for your marketing dollars.
What information do they provide about progress?
It’s important to establish goals with the agency you're working with, whether it’s a specific percent increase in site traffic, X number of people engaging with you on social media, or 50 new leads per month. These goals offer you a way to hold them accountable, and you should review them frequently. The agency should give you a summary of what was done last month, what worked and what didn’t, and what they’ll be doing next month to get you to your goals. Always request monthly check-ins if you really want to know what’s happening – and once-a-month meetings shouldn’t cost extra; it should be a normal course of business.
Marketing is so much more complicated than it used to be and there are so many things that need monitoring. If your website is your best salesperson, you should see direct traffic, organic traffic, average page views, bounce rate, new sessions, and more. You should see which social media sites are sending the most people to your site, and you should know how many keywords are ranked in the top 3 and top 10.
You have no idea how many ways there are to track marketing efforts today. Don’t let anyone say they can’t attribute tactics to results – today’s technology allows us to do exactly that. Leads aren’t the only thing to look at.
And a shameless plug for Leading Results: we’ve always done this for our clients because ‘results’ is part of our name – it’s in our DNA!