We live in an ever-expanding digital world. Digital marketing agencies have teams that specialized in creating and implementing plans for successful campaigns. When looking for a digital marketing agency, it’s important to evaluate the agency before hiring the company. This article will address the how and why of selecting a digital agency.
But first, here’s a condensed timeline showing how the digital world has expanded. The term digital marketing first appeared in the 1990s and the first clickable banner ad made its debut in 1993. In 1994, Yahoo was launched, with Google following in 1998. Then, the social media revolution began with MySpace launching in 2003 and Facebook emerging the next year.
The concept of cookies — sometimes called internet cookies, browser cookies or HTML cookies — first appeared in 1994. We’ve all seen the box that pops up and asks about cookies, but how many of us truly understand their importance? Here’s a simple breakdown of what cookies are and how they are used: When you visit a website, a cookie, or a small text file is dropped on your computer. This file is used to identify you the next time that you visit the same site, and it keeps track of your browsing history on that website. And this is how digital marketing has turned into an essential part of any company or brand’s marketing strategy.
So, what is digital marketing?
The short answer – digital marketing is utilizing online strategies to identify a potential audience and turn them into paying customers whether that be for a service or product. This involves using any digital channels by a business, company or brand to promote and market their products or services to new and existing customers. These digital channels can include social media, search engines, mobile devices and others to reach their target audience.
There are numerous companies vying for the attention and the purchasing power of their target audience. And while some brands have the bandwidth and resources to utilize in-house staff to achieve their digital marketing objectives, many others do not.
For others, enlisting the help of an agency that specializes in digital marketing can assist in leveling the playing field.
Cecil Brandon founded The Brandon Agency in 1959 as a postcard business. He was integral in Myrtle Beach becoming the “Golf Capital of the World.” Today, over 60 years later, the agency has grown to be the largest independent agency in the Carolinas and one of only 24 certified brand strategy consultancies in the nation. Brandon has been on the forefront of digital marketing since the inception of the term, and digital strategies emerged. The agency works across a broad range of industries.
Tips for finding the best Digital Marketing Agency
Dig in and do your research
As you begin your quest to seek out the perfect agency, make sure to do your research. Here are few things to look for:
First, check out its website.
Is it engaging? Does it link to its own social media accounts? What about content? The appearance and functionality of its website can tell you a lot about the company’s skills and the effort that it will bring to the table for your project.
Look for case studies.
Most agencies will post these case studies on their website showing the scope of work that they did for a particular client.
Seek out testimonials.
Successful partnerships will garner positive reviews from clients. Look for testimonials on an agency’s website.
Clearly define your objectives and goals
Whether you’re an emerging or heritage brand or anything in between, having clearly defined goals are essential. Before signing with an agency, it’s imperative that you decide exactly what the needs are for your company or brand.
Is your company launching a new product or service? Rebranding? Are you looking to create an online community?
Having clearly defined goals will make it easier to understand your anticipated results. It’s also important to define your budget.
Make sure the agency aligns with your company’s values and goals
Does the agency cater to your industry or specific category? If not, keep looking.
Also, is the company concerned with only signing you as a client or is it looking for a partnership?
It’s important for a prospective agency to ask as many questions about your brand and what your goals are as you are asking about its capabilities and successes.
Make sure that the agency is on the forefront of technology
Ask questions. Some agencies specialize in one facet or another in marketing strategies. Some agencies are full-service and have staff that provide an array of services across the spectrum.
Since the 1990s when the term digital marketing first emerged, the speed at which technology is changing is ever-increasing. The market is continuously evolving, and agencies must be adaptable to stay at the forefront to remain pertinent. Trends are ever-changing, and what was trending last week may be obsolete the next.
Inquire about their areas of expertise, portfolio and references
Evaluating your prospective agency should also entail asking for a portfolio of past projects as well as asking for references from past or current clients. This process is no different than interviewing for a job. If you’re the hiring manager, you’re going to do your due diligence before you potentially hire an employee. The same should hold true when hiring an agency to handle work on your company’s behalf.
Make sure that their areas of expertise align with your goals discussed in the section above. If they don’t, keep looking.
Does your company have a digital marketing plan? If so, are you maximizing your ROI? As a fully integrated marketing firm, Brandon can cover these bases — and lots more — for your brand. As one of only 24 certified brand strategy consultancies in the nation, we are experts in creating and implementing successful strategies. Reach out to our team of marketing professionals today to see how we can help your brand with its digital marketing, SEO, public relations and more.