How to Choose the Best Search Marketing Partner for Your BusinessRealizing you need to enlist help with your search marketing needs is one thing—but trying to select the right search marketing partner to assist you with those needs is another. How do you know you’re picking the right company to help you? What should you look for? What makes a company a solid marketing partner? Here’s a look at what you need to consider:
Reputation & Results
Your company’s search marketing is too important to trust to a newbie. Rather than just going with the first search marketing company you find, look for one with an established reputation for achieving results. Consider the work the company has done for other clients. Talk to previous or current clients. Ask colleagues you can trust for recommendations. When a company is backed by authentic feedback, you can have greater peace of mind in choosing it.
Find out what marketing vehicles the company offers. Is it good at online marketing? What areas does it specialize in? Is there evidence that it will do a good job getting your marketing message out? You want to find a company with strong options for growing your brand. Before signing up with one, ask for a breakdown of what they can offer.
The size of a search marketing company might not be the most important factor worth considering, but it is a factor. There is no clear “good or bad” in terms of how big a company should be, but there are questions to ask. If it’s a huge company that serves big brands, could you get lost in the shuffle? If it’s a small company with only a few clients, does it have the expertise you need? How many customers does it have? Does it work with companies the size of yours? Consider all these factors before making your choice.
Costs are certainly an important factor to consider when planning your marketing campaigns—and different search marketing providers have different rates to offer. Know what you can afford to spend, and look for a marketing partner who can work with your budget. Ideally, this includes a customized marketing plan that caters to your needs and goals as well as finances.
It might not seem obvious at first, but a company that communicates with you is a big asset. Whenever you farm out part of your business processes, from marketing to accounting, you want to be in the loop about what’s going on. For this reason, it’s very important that you choose a company that is responsive and clear about expectations and results. Beyond talking to previous clients, you can also learn about a firm’s responsiveness by looking at the way it communicates with you now. When you ask for information, quotes, marketing plans, and so on, is someone responding to you? If not, don’t expect things to change when you sign a contract. Look for a firm with clear communication every step of the way.
Do you currently work with a search marketing firm to promote your business? Why or why not? What other factors would influence your decision to choose a certain company?
This post originally appeared on the Straight North Blog
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