Evaluating your marketing firm

As a marketing professional, I’m always under close scrutiny. Operating in a subjective and, many times, seemingly intangible industry, how can I not be? As someone who is on the “frontline” of working together with our firm’s clientele, I’m also the one who needs to showcase our team’s talent, ability and, more importantly, results. For marketing firms that are not as confident and results-driven as ours is, this can be difficult to do.

Most professionals know and value the power of marketing. However, valuing it alone is not enough. As a business person, you make an investment in your marketing firm partners in order to produce results. So what should you be asking yourself when it comes to your marketing firm?

Consider the following when evaluating the effectiveness of your marketing firm:

Did you and your marketing firm establish expectations and/or a baseline of desired results at the start of your working relationship?

  • Have those goals been met?
  • If not, what can be attributed to not reaching those goals?
  • Was it the lack of support from your marketing firm?
  • Did you change the focus of your business and, thereby, your marketing efforts to another area?

Has your marketing firm taken the time to really understand your business, your market, your products/services as well as your short-term and long-term business goals?

  • Do they ask you the tough questions and provide you with feedback on areas your business may need to develop?
  • Do you have access to more than one person at your firm to ensure you receive the highest quality of workmanship and responsiveness to your needs?
  • Trust your gut. Does your marketing firm feel like a business partner to you or an outside vendor?

You have short-term and long-term business goals in sight. Has your marketing firm provided you with a short-term and long-term marketing plan to correspond with your vision?

Marketing can help transform your company. But, beware of consultants and firms who misrepresent themselves as the experts. In an industry that has no barrier to entry, our world is littered with marketing pros who promise services but cannot deliver the goods.

Take caution in your selection and review process and take the time to align yourself, and your business, with the right marketing partner.

Amber Stidham serves as director of strategic planning for Imagine Marketing.
Contact Amber at astidham@imnv.com

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