How to select the right content marketing agency


Choosing the right content marketing agency is not an easy task, especially if you are doing it for the first time. There are hundreds of these operating and it would seem that investing in the stock market would perhaps have been less of a risk. On a serious note, there are many qualities to assess before you choose the right support partner who would help build your brand. Here is a checklist on how to zero in on that perfect match.

Ownership and commitment
An agency should never wrap up a project or a film like they’re sending off a message in a bottle, just hoping for the best outcome. Agreed, no artist, professional or team will ever be perfect, but if one is committed to better one’s best, things can only improve. The right agency will always be eager to know whether they succeeded in the campaign, if not, then what went wrong, and how to better their performance in the future.

Have they assigned a point person?
Owing to lack of resources, many agencies often don’t assign a go-to-person or a dedicated team for a given assignment or account. Many do assign a shared resource, which means that the same team may be working simultaneously on two or more accounts. This ends up in frustration as they keep getting replaced or they are never there when you need them the most. This situation never allows things to settle down, and invariably deadlines are hit adversely.

Risk-taking appetite
Nobody wants to be predictable. Experimentation is the only way to reach out to newer markets or to unleash untapped potential. So you need to find a content marketing agency that will keep you on your toes, and one who keeps sharing fresh ideas. Since communication is the intent, the mediums can vary based on the situation or your audience profile. Till the day before, you may not have even heard of sky balloon advertising, but today you are sure that it works better for your brand. Advertising and communication platforms evolve, so don’t get trapped with an agency that is not daring enough to keep trying something new.

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Corporate ethics and employee retention patterns
Never trust an agency whose employees or clients don’t stick around for long. Any agency, if it can’t retain its cream, would send out the message that there is something seriously wrong with the way it functions. Sure, some engagements are bound to have their issues but lookout for trends or patterns. If confirmed, avoid them. Any agency worth its salt would push for long-term relationships, be it with employees or with partners.

Background check
Don’t go by just your gut feeling or the way they treated you on your first meeting. Search them online to see if there are reviews on their performance left on LinkedIn, social media websites or just about anywhere. Another indicator is to do a reference check. Call up or send an email to a couple of companies they would have mentioned as their current or past partners and ask what their experience of working with them was like. A happy customer will never hesitate to promote his partners.

Do they value your time and money?
The right agency will always tread with caution before they take a final call. They will do some amount of market testing before they start spending your money and time on campaigns that may or may not work. Be attentive to the details like: do they share a specific timeline? or, are they confident about the approach, or do they bring to the table more ideas or thoughts?

Do they have their own viewpoint?
If you have hired an agency, they need to be critical to every step that is to be taken. If they toe a ‘yes sir’ line all the way, in that case, you don’t need their services. The right agency will be brutally honest and will tell you when you’re unknowingly working against your own goals.

Do they believe in transparency?
The agency of your choice should be eager to figure out the right path as soon as you have shared your basic marketing intent or vision. They will propose set goals and establish metrics that can be assessed at periodic intervals so that you can visualise what to expect and not end up with completely opposite expectations or results.

Are they dependable?
Apart from operating with a positive outlook, a good content agency will always give you attention, irrespective of the size of the project. This is proof enough that they are not only seasoned players but also an agency that believes in long-term partnerships.

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We hope this article will help you in finding the right content agency for your next marketing campaign. Do share your experiences in the comments box below.