We all know, sharing is caring, but sometimes it is hard to share business data with others. It is not an easy task to clearly see the limit of "too much" and "too little." Nevertheless, keeping an open mind and an open report is the secret ingredient of marketing success.
So, here are the top 6 things your marketing agency should know about your business.
1. Tell Us about Your Goal
The answer is probably this; "we want more customers, we want more growth, and we need awesome marketing for it." This might cut it for a vague headline in a magazine, but for your digital marketing team this information is too superficial to use in their work.
They need business data to base their social media, SEO, email, and inbound marketing strategies on. Tell your marketing team about the exact expectations you have. Is it traffic increase? Is it lead generation? Is it conversion optimization? Are you struggling to sell a specific service? All of those solutions can bring you customers, but they all belong to different problems. As a business owner or a marketing director, you need to shed light on the marketing challenges your business is facing, so that your team can give you the right diagnosis and start implementing a unique and targeted strategy.
By the time you're discussing the partnership details with the agency you plan to work with, you need to be able to articulate the exact problems you have, or at least have an idea about what it can be due to initial consultations with your team.
Needless to say, you can’t change goals every month.
2. Tell Us About Your Brand
No one knows your brand better than you do. And we want to hear all of that! Brand personality is a very subtle direction of marketing, which requires clear and precise communication. How can you describe your brand? You don't need to use marketing-specific terms, but you need to communicate what your brand stands for.
These points are mentioned throughout the online channels. Social media marketing is heavily based on brand personality and its style of communicating to its buyers.
If your marketing agency is not asking questions about your brand, they are most probably implementing a standard strategy that will fail to stress your unique selling points. Are you a swimming pool company based in South Carolina that boasts exceptional customer service and very friendly staff? Or maybe you are a tech company with an immense stress on data security and with a unique confidentiality code? These are the kind of details we need to know.
Same goes for your website design and emails your leads receive in their inbox. Consider it a first date: we’re getting to know you, and the more you can tell us up front, the more we can tell if we’re a match made on Hubspot or not.
3. Tell Us About Your Buyers
Don't think we're crazy if we ask you to describe the person that is most likely to enter your store or give you call. Be specific about who your ideal customer is. We will want to know what their preferences are concerning your services, what their online activity hours are, their challenges, expectations and how can your company service them.
Never exaggerate, thinking that your digital marketing agency might catch big fish if they don’t know it’s way above your capabilities. Sure, businesses grow and you might be able to level up your profits, but a step-by-step campaign will get you further than an inaccurate buyer persona profile.
Buyer personas are fictional representations of your ideal customer. They are also objectively selected and researched. This is why we are so confident in our marketing activities, because we know exactly who is on the other side of the communication line.
Collect some data to present to your marketing team, including basic demographics data, common biography details, common challenges, lifestyles and personalities.
4. How Would You Like to Be Communicated to?
If you’re the primary contact to your marketing team and you’re going on a month long Caribbean cruise (lucky you! We’re jealous), a secondary contact should be provided to your team. If you need to approve a press release, your marketing can’t send it out. And there you go: scoring very low on timing rate and being late in the world of marketing is a deadly sin.
Absence of communication will make the job of your marketing team more difficult and the campaign less effective. So be clear about your communication habits and days you will be unavailable before you start a campaign. Most importantly, inform your business colleagues about the needs of your marketing agency. Make sure your marketing has access to your sales team, and vice versa. Turn this partnership into a team working together and campaigns will run much smoother.
Your marketing team should ask you about it during one of your final pre-contract meetings with them.
5. Tell Us about Your Marketing History
There is a kind of background check in the world of marketing too, although it’s called simply research. Your team may research your brand’s activities online for days, come across problems and tasks that have already been done, or you can provide them with the marketing history from the beginning.
Sometimes, methods that you have used in the past can cause issues in the future. For instance, if your website content is not unique, it will draw your marketing team back, no matter what kind of impossible fights they win for your company. Past penalties, black hat SEO, buying followers on social media will definitely ruin your online reputation in the long run. The only solution is being honest with your team and sharing that information. If your team is confident about handling it, then they will make informed choices, if they are not, you might be paying for a service that won't help you grow anyway.
When doing this, make sure to explain what worked, what didn’t and why. In fact, your marketing history doesn’t need to be digital only! Put your right hand on your brand book and share your success stories and failures.
6. Your ROI And Monthly Sales Estimates
I know it might be difficult at first, and you might feel like you're sharing confidential business information, but you're not, really.
Be transparent with your marketing agency and share your sales data, customer information, frequently asked questions, and so on. When your team is working on a campaign for weeks, they must be able to assess the results in terms of sales and ROI.
Knowing the days and months that were extremely productive for you will help them come up to conclusions that your business will benefit from, so don't hold back.
Finally, remember that a company that asks questions cares about you as a client, a company that goes into a silent limbo after the payment was made … well, you should check the progress of your campaign before it’s too late and you join the league of businesses who just “don’t trust marketing agencies.”
Your marketing agency is a part of your team, make sure it's clear. And now, if you want to know if we are a match, contact us for your free inbound marketing assessment. We love asking questions!