The underrated value in getting your information from actually talking with another person. No, really, I want you to think about what is happening when you reach out to a (hopefully competent) service provider of any sort – you are conversing with a daily practitioner of a certain specialty and getting to pick their brain. The best part is that, more often than not, they do this initial consultation for free. Now, I am not advocating for you to start calling companies to see what you can learn from them, with no intention of actually purchasing. Doing that would be just as much a waste of your time as it is theirs. Equipped with this list of questions to ask a digital marketing agency puts you in a position to get the most out of your interview with them.
Maybe this approach is not underrated for everyone, but people spend A TON of time behind a computer and get less human interaction than in decades past. This means that a lot of how you get your information comes from reading articles or watching videos for your daily news or any research you do. But what about being able to interact and ask questions in real time with customized responses?
For many, the word “interview” conjures up past experiences that were often less than pleasant. But for small businesses and entrepreneurs just getting started, interviewing a prospective digital marketing agency can provide more value than you might think, and I’ll get into the “Why” of that next.
Top 9 Questions to Ask a Digital Marketing Agency
What is your backlink strategy?
- Love them or hate them, backlinks are still important to a website’s traffic and domain authority. Having high-quality backlinks tends to imply: “Hey, all of these credible resources also acknowledge that my website is a worthy resource; send more traffic.” Get an idea of how they handle this aspect of digital marketing. Even simply asking them about their thoughts on backlinks and their significance can reveal a lot.
Can you provide case studies or examples of past work?
- Request specific examples of successful campaigns or projects they’ve undertaken for clients in your industry. This helps evaluate their track record and expertise.
What digital marketing services do you offer?
- Clarify the range of services they provide, such as SEO, PPC advertising, social media management, content marketing, email marketing, etc. Ensure their offerings align with your business needs (chances are, after speaking to an agency or two, you will quickly develop a better idea of what you need for the stage your business is at).
How do you tailor campaigns for each client?
- Inquire about their approach to customizing digital marketing strategies. Understanding how they adapt their services to meet your unique goals and challenges will help you determine if they are the proper fit for your organization’s goals and culture.
What is your reporting and measurement process?
- Ask about the metrics they track and how they report progress and results (and when you can access them). A transparent and easy-to-read reporting system is essential to gauge the effectiveness of their campaigns.
What is your approach to SEO and Content Strategy?
- If SEO and content marketing are priorities, delve into their strategies for improving search engine rankings and content creation. Discuss keyword research, on-page optimization, and content quality. Do they mention anything about SGE?
What SGE optimization efforts do you have in place?
- What steps would they be taking to evolve with Search Generative Experience and ensure your website is optimized for it? They should have a plan underway and be viewing this as an OPPORTUNITY, nothing else.
How do you stay updated with industry trends?
- Digital marketing seems like it changes every day because it does. Ask the agency about their commitment to ongoing education and staying abreast of industry changes. This will also allow you to get a feel for the agency’s philosophy.
What is your communication and collaboration process?
- Understand how they handle communication and collaboration with clients. Clear communication and a collaborative partnership are essential for a successful working relationship. Ask if you will be assigned one account manager for your account or if you will be dealing with multiple people.
This is not an exhaustive list and, while some of these questions are generic, the way the agency responds to them can reveal a lot about their operation, for better or worse.
Reasons to Interview Multiple Digital Marketing Agencies
Time-Saving: Learning about digital marketing, like many other pursuits, takes time and practice. If you are a small, growing business, you probably don’t have spare time for all the items on your checklist. This is where you can take advantage of speaking to a team of digital marketing pros. We were once a small business, and we’re built by those who also grew their own businesses. We understand the pain points you encounter, and we have more than our digital marketing knowledge to share.
Human Connection: Whether through a video call or an in-person meeting, simply connecting with another human still reigns supreme when building genuine relationships and fostering meaningful interactions. While we still encourage you to research online about each agency, its reputation, and general digital marketing research, we cannot emphasize enough the value of speaking with an agency.
Growth Priming: If you have been building your small business rapidly, you have been delegating and outsourcing tasks to support this growth. As such, you don’t always get all the information you’d like; instead, you receive a scaled-down summary. Speaking to a digital marketing agency can give you a better idea of what’s currently going on in the marketing world. From the latest trends to the best practices, there’s really no better way to get a current industry snapshot. This could be the beginning of a long-term partnership, as lasting ones are often built on trust and transparency.
Facts vs Feelings: Hiring the Right Agency for Your Business
Since you want to feel like you made the right decision about each service provider you partner with, you may feel obligated to go with the first agency that you really connect with. While this is not a terrible move, you are leaving value on the table by not speaking with more. Don’t waste their time, and only reach out to agencies that you are serious about potentially partnering with.
An agency that fits your needs now might not be the best one for your company two years from now. It’s always good to start each interview with respect for the other person’s time. Think about what they are sacrificing to jump on a call with you. I know that sounds contradictory, but if you are genuinely serious about finding a digital marketing agency, even just sharing your pain points and your ideal vision of what a partnership would look like can provide some value to them.
Stop looking at “Hire a digital marketing agency in Boynton Beach, Florida,” on your to-do list. With your newly acquired list of questions to ask a digital marketing agency, why not start by completing our prospect form here, and we will follow up within two business days (but most likely quicker than that!)
P.S. – If you are determined to learn more about digital marketing on your own, Search Engine Journal is another great source of information.