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Editorial blog

How to choose an agency

02 Nov 2019

Sara Davies MBE, founder at Crafter’s Companion, gives her top tips on finding you the right help.

Setting up a business, whether it’s born out of a passion or an entrepreneurial mindset, can be daunting. As a business owner, it’s important to understand that while you hold the reins, you can’t possibly be good at everything.

If you’re wanting to undertake a particular project or campaign and don’t have the resources in-house, sometimes outside help is the answer. Whether it’s to assist your company with a complete brand overhaul, a marketing strategy or social media, an agency can often be the best option and could save you precious time in the process.

While working with an agency can be more cost-effective than hiring someone for what might be a short-term job, it is still a significant investment. Bearing these tips in mind can help you to make the best choice for you and your business.

Research

Start with your own research. You might have a loose idea of what you’re trying to achieve by bringing an agency on board but doing your own research and making specific objectives and aims will help you to see who can best achieve those for your company.

Referrals

Referrals from people you know are a great way to find out about agencies that have done a fantastic job and better yet, those that haven’t. You’ll also find that a lot of companies will list case studies with particular campaigns on their websites, so you can take these as another starting point.

Meet up

Always meet an agency before jumping the gun and signing one up. A pitch setting will enable you to ask questions and first impressions. It’s a good opportunity to throw a few curveballs their way to see how they cope with challenges.

An agency’s knowledge and expertise are key, after all it’s exactly what you’re paying them for. As the company hiring an agency, you know your industry inside out and the expectation is that they have the most knowledge about the service they are selling.

Most creative and marketing agencies know the importance of adapting to an ever-changing market and should be able to see how they will fit within your field. The way they do their research and show how they have the tools and experience to do the job will set them apart.

Ask yourself if they understand your business and if they fit with your team. While you want them to take the lead with a brief, you want an agency to be an extension of your business. With that being said, you need to be able to get along and work with whoever has been tasked with the project.

Collaboration

Collaboration should be key. Yes, they may be experts in their field but ultimately, it’s your business. If they can’t work with you effectively then they probably don’t understand you, your business and ultimately your brand.

Passion

Lastly, consider whether they are passionate about the project and your company. Money is the driving factor for completing work but if someone has genuine passion for a project it will translate across the campaign. This will be obvious to you and your consumers and is something money can’t buy.

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