As the proverb goes: A goal without a plan is just a wish.
Success in digital marketing is all about planning your strategy. Without a plan, how will you reach your goal?
"You might need to hire a digital marketing agency if you need insight into your marketing strategy," says Derrick Rehn an SEO Specialist at Integritive. He continues, "Anyone can write a blog post, share a picture on Facebook, or create website content. But is that website content written with keyword searches in mind? Have you considered how you will funnel users on your website to making a purchase or submitting a form?"
If the answer is "no," or "what is that?" your website could probably use a little strategy.
When you have finished reading this article, you should have a broader perspective on how hiring a digital marketing firm can help hone your sense of direction, develop a plan, and partner with you to carry it out until you have the desired results.
Find a clear sense of direction
Jessica Herbine, SEO Manager at Trinity Insight explains, "You might need to hire a digital marketing agency if . . . you don't have the capacity to carry out — or even dream up! — the plans that will grow your business." She adds, "The majority of our eCommerce partners are well-versed in a particular marketing channel or niche, but do not have the in-house resources needed to further expand their online presence and test new platforms and trends."
Handling your own marketing without coordinated, strategic plans can lead to inconsistency. Herbine says, "If you or your team are frequently putting out fires and jumping from project to project, a digital marketing agency can offer a clear plan and sense of direction."
Incite competitor jealousy
"You might need to hire a digital marketing agency if . . . you want to be found online and beat your competition in sales," says Robin Rucinsky, Media Director and President of Thrive Advertising.
Even when your end goal is put this plainly, your business goal still needs a plan.
According to Rucinsky, "Your digital advertising plan, when executed properly, should make all of your competitors fearful and jealous at the same time. They'll feel it when your digital marketing plans are done right, and when they start copying you, which I promise you they'll try, you'll know you've knocked it out of the park! I've seen this over and over again! You don't do your own business taxes, why would you do your own digital marketing if that's not your area of expertise?"
Coordinate your brand efforts
"You might need to hire a digital marketing agency if you are having problems scaling your initiatives — both vertically and horizontally, advises Rich Anand, Founder and COO of Evolvez Agency. "It is easy for companies to adopt a few channels (like Instagram, Facebook, etc.), but creating cross-marketing flows where all outlets work in sync takes time and effort."
If your content planning, social media strategies, and other customer outreach like marketing automation, email marketing, and text campaigns aren’t aligned with each other, you may benefit from an agency’s ability to help develop a plan that incorporates production and distribution into the most cohesive plan. Anand adds, "Plus, you have to ensure that your digital activations are also coordinating with any offline activations that may be taking place. It is usually best if one entity can house both digital and off-line activations to ensure that 1) it gets done, and 2) the messaging is synchronous." You want to present a planned, professional interaction with your customers.
Overcome short-term thinking
Lisa Barone, Chief Marketing Officer at Overit suggests that "You might need to hire a digital marketing agency if . . . you have a mouth full of Thanksgiving Day turkey before you think about Cyber Monday."
If this sounds like you, or your company, you are not alone. "When you are laser-focused on your day-to-day, you become a friend to short-term thinking," says Barone. "You prep Monday’s email campaign on Saturday night and forget about those big holiday marketing campaigns until your customers are already decking the halls."
If you are in a situation where you are so busy with the day-to-day, you would benefit greatly from a digital marketing agency’s ability to develop a game plan, looking forward. As Barone says, "Partnering with a creative agency gives you the benefit of long-term strategy." She adds, "Tapping an agency allows your business to think three, six or twelve months in advance. It ensures all efforts are moving in a unified direction, that nothing is falling through the cracks, and that the many facets of an integrated marketing campaign are talking to one another. It makes the brand look smarter."
Gain a strategic partner
What’s holding you back from establishing a clear sense of direction for your company or brand?Sometimes, it is a lack of resources at your disposal, like time, in-house staff, or knowledge. Quentin Aisbett, Founder of Pocket Insights says, "You might need to hire a digital marketing agency if . . . you don't have the resources to develop and execute a digital strategy to build your brand, attract and engage your audience, nurture your visitors until they become customers, and finally empower your audience to advocate on your behalf."
Although this series of events seems hard to contemplate for people less-versed in the online marketing world, this is #goals.
"I highlight the resources for a digital strategy," says Aisbett, "because this is often what is lacking when things go wrong or things just don't go. Even for companies that have a full-time digital marketing person, it's incredibly difficult for them to find the time to concentrate on the strategy when they have so many day-to-day tactics to manage."
Digital marketing agencies not only consult with your business to make battle plans and clear the path ahead, but they can then take up the reins or partner with your in-house team. "When you have partners who act as an extension of your team," says Herbine, "you can rely on channel experts to do the heavy lifting and take the work off of your plate to achieve bigger and better goals. Sometimes, a little extra man or woman power is what's needed to take your business to the next level."
As a strategic partner, Aisbett explains, "A digital marketing agency can bring all this to you as well as access to more intimate knowledge of the varying channels such as search, email, social, content, and the list goes on." With all of these channels covered and plans coordinated, you will have a better idea of both the big picture and day-to-day needs and goals of your marketing efforts. Strategy.
This article is part of our ongoing series: Top Reasons to Hire a Digital Marketing Agency.