The business world is a tough place for even the toughest folks. Just about everything is working against you, which is why hiring an advertising agency that gets the job done is such a blessing. It’s one less thing you have to worry about, and understand that being in business means worrying about more than you could have every imagined.
But hiring the right advertising agency for your business is another step that has to be navigated carefully. Should you hire the wrong agency, you waste time and money investing in worthless strategies, and you run the risk of doing irreparable harm to your business and its reputation. You’ve worked too hard for that to happen, so you need to be on your ‘A’ game when hiring an advertising agency to handle things.
How do you know you’ve made the right hire? Here’s a checklist to keep close at hand:
Maintaining Contact with You — A good ad agency maintains regular contact with its clients so that everyone is on the same page, especially if changes in strategy should arise. Nothing brings more anxiety than being in the dark about something, especially your own business.
Agency Will Push Back & Disagree — It can be nice to have “Yes” men around you, but it can be incredibly harmful to your business. You need occasional resistance from someone so that you know that things aren’t quite right & can be addressed ASAP. The same goes with an ad agency. You may have a vision, but said vision may be flawed. The right agency will not be afraid to tell you this. Of course, it bears mentioning that you don’t want to be chastised & rebuked every time you make a suggestion. It’s your business after all.
Similar Values and Cultural Fit — Professional sports teams always talk about chemistry in the locker room. Businesses are the same way. You want an advertising agency that fits well & gets ‘it’. Everyone clicks and all parties are on the same page. Visions align, and the right ad agency becomes part of the fold.
Experience with Businesses Like Yours — Ultimately, though, you need to find out if an advertising agency actually has experience getting results for businesses like yours. They may have a great track record, but your business might have unique characteristics that demand more from an ad agency than the usual client. If that experience isn’t there, you might not be interested in an agency learning “on the job” with you as the guinea pig.
In reality, your approach to hiring an advertising agency is the same as interviewing an prospective employee. You have to run them through a gauntlet of questions and see what they bring to the table. Can they handle constructive criticism? What can they say regarding less-than-ideal parts of their record? What sets them apart from everyone else? It can be an exhaustive search and one that does not come easy. Still, if you know that you can’t handle advertising duties and having someone in-house to handle them might not be feasible, an advertising agency may be the best way to go, so choose wisely.