How do I Hire a Marketing Agency? 20 Tips

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How do I Hire a Marketing Agency? 20 Tips

While you can decide to go it on your own, hiring a marketing agency like is always the best cause of action for the best results. But, how do you hire one? This article will look to outline 20 tips on how to hire a marketing agency.

The key questions to ask yourself

The following are the questions you should ask yourself when looking to hire a marketing agency:

What is the stage and size of your company?

When hiring a marketing agency, you need to find one that aligns with and understands your needs which is why you should consider the stage and size of your company according to

Startup company – needs to develop the fundamentals before focusing on tactics

Small business – a limited budget, some existing processes, and internal resources

Mid-sized company – looking to scale up and improve marketing performance

Large enterprise – needs expertise and extra capacity to work quicker

Where are you in the marketing program development process?

As is explained over at, you want the agency you hire to match your development stage.

Design – are you designing your sales and marketing system?

Build – are you investing in technology and building your systems and processes?

Grow – are you in the client acquisition, retention, and account development stage?

Optimize – are you working to optimize system performance?

What is your target market?

Are you selling to a mass market, a niche market, or some micro-segment?

Business to consumer – are you selling to consumers?

Business to business – are you selling to other companies?

What is your focus?

Your focus dictates the nature of your marketing program. Are you brand-focused, product-focused, or are you focused on developing long-term customer relationships?

Brand-centric – focused on reach, frequency and, developing a brand preference

Product-centric – focused on pitching your product and its value proposition

Customer-centric – focused on maximizing customers lifetime value

The difference between these options is significant when hiring an agency.

Is your business online or offline?

Do you operate a brick-and-mortar business, is your business online, or is it a mix of both? This is another important operational and technical distinction and will help hire the right marketing agency for your business according to

What is your sales distribution model?

How do you interact with and sell to people? Do you sell:

Through distribution – via wholesale and retail partners as discussed over at

Direct to customers – on-site, with sales reps, or through a website

Network marketing – an army of independent representatives

What is your industry?

Does the marketing agency you hire need to have some industry insiders or do you need a fresh and innovative approach? This is another question that will help you when hiring a marketing agency according to the gurus over at

What is your objective?

What is the purpose of your marketing investment? As articulated over at, there are 4 core objectives to consider:

Client attraction – working to attract new first-time customers

Following-up to close – working to close sales leads more effectively

Client development – working to keep and grow customer lifetime value

Recovery – trying to re-engage lost or inactive clients

All of the above – working to improve sales and marketing system effectiveness

None of the above – focusing on how to use a tactic or software correctly

Which objectives does the agency focus on?

What is your promotional focus?

One of the critical distinctions in marketing is promotion versus attraction. Are you creating demand for an offering or are you tapping into pre-existing demand? Many agencies line up one side of this divide or the other. Which one do you need?

Promotion/demand generation – you are creating demand for your offering

Attraction/demand servicing – you are attempting to tap into pre-existing demand

Which tactics will you use?

If you are ready to engage in promotional tactics, you will want help selecting the right ones. The marketing agency you hire needs to have the expertise and experience to help you achieve business objectives as well as also having that tactic as part of its offerings to start with.

The most common tactics

If you are wondering what these tactics are, then, as articulated over at, the most common tactics include:

Traditional and online advertising

Content marketing

Search marketing

Direct response marketing

Social media marketing

Website development

Direct selling

Event marketing

Mobile marketing

Email marketing

Influencer marketing

Public relations

Selecting a marketing agency

Sales and marketing agencies fall into several broad categories, which include:

Marketing coaches

These are ideal for startups and business owners who lack experience and resources as explained over at The coaching relationship is about developing a sales and marketing program, with your coach directing you to do the right things, in the right order, and in the right way to get results.

Fractional chief marketing officers (CMOs)

As per, fractional CMOs are engaged in a part-time contract capacity, which often translates to a time commitment of 5 to 40 hours per month. What you get is an experienced executive to join your team, for a fraction of the cost of a full-time person. Your fractional CMO is responsible for leading your sales and marketing program.

Marketing consulting agencies

These specialize in strategic planning and tend to be business goals-oriented rather than focused on specific marketing tactics. You hire one to work with you to handle the heavy lifting as these agencies work on strategic goal setting, research, planning, design, technology selection, implementation support, and more.

Graphic design agencies

These are a diverse group since the word design has many different meanings and applications. It could mean brand design, graphic design, product and packaging design, experience design, web design, etc. Designers care about the form, aesthetic, and emotional experience of things, which is why you want them on your team.

Tactical service firms

These are a diverse group of providers. They are focused on promotional activities as covered over at, which could be any marketing tactic including:

Television advertising

Search marketing

Influencer marketing

Public relations

Email marketing

Video marketing

Social media

Mobile marketing, etc.

Marketing technology agencies

These tend to focus on one suite of software or hardware according to Given their specificity, they should be last in your selection process when looking to hire a marketing agency. This is because you want your technology decisions to fit into and support your marketing plans, and not the other way around.

Contract subject matter experts

Also known as individual contractors, they are often subject matter experts. People engage marketing contractors like designers, writers, programmers, videographers, etc. because of their expertise as well as because of their hourly rates, which are often lower than agency rates as revealed over at While these people can be excellent at what they do, you still need to have someone looking after the big picture.

Digital marketing agencies

These agencies focus on helping you increase traffic to your website and improving the value of that traffic. They use various strategies such as SEO and online advertising to drive your traffic, while they can also redesign your online branding and website to improve conversion rates and sales.

Market research agencies

These don’t carry out marketing on your behalf, instead, they focus on collecting and analyzing data specific to your brand. They can help you measure the efforts you have developed and reasonably predict the impact specific campaigns have on their intended audiences. Market research becomes invaluable as your brand grows, but until you are generating data, it can produce diminishing returns on your investments.

Hopefully, you will be able to hire a marketing agency with the help of this article, with more information on this topic to be found over at and