Trust-building is essential for us; we have worked with companies that had no experience with digital marketing, companies that had a history of many attempts and those who simply didn't trust. In all cases, questions should be asked, answers given, so that the collaboration between two companies is productive on both sides.
But we often wonder if there is a way to avoid a bad choice from the very start. For this purpose, we've built a separate guide on finding a digital marketing agency you can trust, but there is one additional point that needs a comprehensive discussion. The need for certifications. Does it really matter if a company is certified or not? Can a badge really have a difference in the results of the campaign? Here's what you should know.
The Badge. Should You Believe It?
A badge is just a badge. Anyone can create a badge, post it on their website and claim to be a master of the digital Kung Fu methodology, which might not even exist or is practiced only by that specific website. Just know that there is always a way to check the authenticity of the badge.
Both Hubspot and Google publicize their partner agency lists, so if, for instance, you'd like to check if Waypost Marketing really does have the certifications it claims to have, simply search our name here for Hubspot and view our Google partner profile here. Easy, right? This simple step can save you another negative experience, so make a note.
Access to Industry News
Companies with real partner certifications usually have exclusive access to the organization's staff, as well as industry news, events, and new products. While this might not seem important to you as a business owner, your marketing director will appreciate the insider access. Whether you're using Google tools or Hubspot, partner agencies are regularly notified of new research and products that are designed to improve digital marketing processes.
Some agencies even get access to beta versions of the products, having an exclusive chance to test it before they roll out to the mainstream market. If proved effective, these tools can be used to drive your online activities further.
Same goes for Google. The updates and rule changes Google introduces every now and then directly affect your website rankings and paid search. Agencies who have early access to updates and news are able to take leverage important changes ahead of their competition.
Why Work with a Hubspot Partner?
Inbound methodology is a way of doing digital marketing. It's an entire system of strategies, tactics, and tools. While Hubspot seems to be a very user-friendly and simple software that is accessible both to marketers and their clients, there are dozens of other reasons why we choose to use Hubspot.
Being a Hubspot partner agency is not only about using their software, it's also being a part of the worldwide inbound community. Partner agencies undergo an in-depth training of the inbound methodology and the software, are constantly in tune with the latest developments and even participate in the shaping of the inbound industry today. They are the first to receive industry research, product updates, and event beta features available for testing.
Even if Hubspot appears to be fairly simple at first glance, partner agencies are able to utilize the software to its full capacity. Watching the agency's success in Hubspot's Tier program will also give you an idea how that company handles client retention and whether they have already proven ROI for clients. Experience matters, doesn't it?
So, if a company claims to be a Hubspot partner but reaches out to you with a cold-calling sales pitch, engages in shameless self-promotion or restricts your access to information, you have your answer, it is not the inbound way.
Why work with a Google Partner?
Google has always been and continues to be the biggest online mystery. No one really knows how Google works, but some have more information than others.
Just like Hubspot, Google partners enjoy a constant flow of exclusive research, information and product testings. Although you might not know the exact date of the next update, your partner agency definitely has a clue about what needs to be done to ensure your stay ahead of the game.
Further on, tools like Google Analytics are more or less readable for a non-marketer, but using only10% of the tool's capabilities doesn't mean you're using it effectively. Google Analytics can become a powerful tracking tool for those who know how to customize it for each client's unique analysis and reporting requirements.
Same goes for AdWords. Setup and optimization play a decisive role in getting the most out of paid listings on Google. Just because you are ready to surrender your ad budget to Google doesn't mean that your ads will appear on the most valuable searches. If your ad is not optimized correctly, it will lose the fight against other listings or even fail to be visible at all. The certification of the agency proves that at least one of its employees knows how to create profitability for clients using the AdWords tool. And that would be a smarter investment than a blind date with an anonymous advertiser.
So, Why Should You Care?
Digital marketing can be done by anyone, but how it is done will determine your return on investment. We hope you know how to calculate it. A full understanding of digital marketing tools allows smart maneuvering to gain maximum ROI from the campaign. The same ad can produce different results when optimized differently.
In summary, you should care if a digital marketing agency you consider working with is certified or not. Checking its status with Google, Hubspot, and even Facebook is an easy must-do for establishing trust and making the first step towards a good decision.