Late evening. Alyosha with red eyes looking tired looks at the screen. The table is disappointing numbers. Sales cost several months, advertising does not work and, apparently, is not going to. Having gathered his will into a fist, Alyosha takes the only right decision: to surrender into the hands of a marketing agency.
However, Alyosha doesn’t hang up without a fight and is not going to surrender without a fight: he has a lot of valuable advice from network marketing experts, he went through several webinars and was at a conference in Singapore. In general, he knows exactly how to make a business successful and prosperous. In addition, the guys from the agency does not necessarily tell all the problems - they will manage. They are not hired to spy, but to increase sales and raise brand awareness. Or what else is there?
Do you think the agency will succeed in marketing marketing for Alyosha? That is unlikely. Alyosha is doing everything to prevent specialists from doing the work.
You must understand: the marketing of the company in the hands of the agency will be successful when not only the hired specialists, but also you, will invest in the work on it. What to do for this, I will tell. For convenience, divided the advice into three groups:
- What you must do to be sure.
- What you can do, but it is optional.
- What absolutely can not be done.
The information in the article is useful if you plan to contact a marketing agency (hereinafter MA) or have worked with it, but got a negative experience.
What you should do when contacting a marketing agency
Each item is binding. Work with the agency as a "partner partner" and then your company will enjoy pleasant changes.
- Tell the agency about its role in your coordinate system.
Tell MA what place it will take in the company: for example, it will be an outsourced department tied to an internal schedule. Or are you ready to accept it as an independent company and respect the need for information 24/7. If disagreements arise, refuse to cooperate.
- Conclude a mutually beneficial agreement.
Read the agreement of the MA. If necessary, make a protocol of disagreements.
It is important to understand that at the stage of concluding an agreement, no specialist can guarantee specific dates, traffic and positions. A paid service contract and its subject matter are actions and processes, but not the result. The subject of the contract for the promotion of the site can not be the final and measurable result. About "in the top 3 for 2 months" or "increase in attendance by 4 times in six months," there can be no question.
To begin with, experts evaluate the status of your project, give general recommendations and forecast of the results that can be achieved with baseline data. If you have a different vision of the goals, discuss with the project team their realistic nature and, after prior agreement of the goals, agree on the conclusion of an additional agreement in which you can write specific numbers and timelines after 2-3 months of cooperation.
I recommend adding applications with the following information (if any):
- description of the target audience with which to work;
- economic feasibility of concluding a contract - indicate for what reasons you are applying to MA and whether it really makes sense (promotion of a new product is an economically beneficial investment; writing texts on the dead platform of the catalog is not);
- permissible work practices, permission to use copyright.
New arrangements fix in writing: in the mail, instant messengers, Skype. Duplicate all discussions by voice in writing, so that there will be no different interpretations of approvals.
- Honestly voice the budget at the beginning of cooperation.
Do not shy away from the answer to the question about money: a business promotion strategy is based on accounting for available resources. If you promise mountains of gold, but at a crucial moment pour a small pile of river sand, be prepared for the loss of accumulated results.
- Give access to the business.
Tell AI about the company: about employees and team relationships, suppliers, how customers react to changes, etc. This will help to identify weak links at the stage of product and service formation.
Take the time to negotiate with the contractor to give expertise on the business. If you send it to look for information on the Internet, get ready for the same level of strategy development as in the available sources.
- Mark the structure of the company.
Assign responsible persons. Additionally inform MA contacts:
- Accountant - save marketers from financial issues;
- courier and his superior, if you transfer the paper / product samples in the traditional format.
- sales staff to clarify customer information;
- advertisers and smm-specialists (if any) to analyze and improve their work.
Report dismissals of key individuals and individuals whose assistance may be theoretically necessary for an MA. Immediately assign other employees to the vacant places in order not to delay the interaction process.
- Decide on deadlines within the company.
Set aside time for responsible staff to communicate with AI, if their work does not imply a sudden break. Check with agency specialists.
- Standardize and systematize.
Agree on reporting forms and submission algorithm. Sort the documents that you transfer to MA by groups - financially separate, grocery separately. This will save time on the implementation of organizational issues.
- Do not hide dissatisfaction, but express it correctly.
Speak any displeasure. People work with you, not robots - they can be wrong, do not understand the actual moments of the business or have a different point of view on its development.
- Conduct an audit in your company.
When you get the result from MA, check the work of your employees. It is not enough to start working on the strategy - it is necessary that the staff does not impede changes and can work out new applications.
What can be done, but it is not necessary
Completed the previous items? Congratulations! You have excellent prospects for collaboration with the performer. Now make collaboration even more productive.
- Make a list of fears and concerns.
Make two lists for MA. The first one is technical — turn on personal fears in it — they will deceive and run money, will not pick up the phone, and so on. Phoned when he and his colleagues are ready to calm down to close your questions.
- Set priorities in tasks, including probable ones.
Decide which sudden tasks to prioritize. Allow the AI to deviate from the strategy to solve them. Artists will be able to independently manage time and not be afraid of sanctions for their decisions.
- Try to be friends with the agency.
Attend MA workshops, respond to invitations to the office. Allow jokes and liberties in conversation. So the atmosphere of work will become friendly, you will quickly feel the team spirit. Do not go on too informal communication. You can drink together at corporate parties, but you don’t need to have common children after him.
- Allow the agency to help fill out the brief.
Ask the MA in what form it is more convenient for them to receive information, take into account the wishes. Take help in filling out the brief: quickly understand what is expected of you and provide information without water.
- Conclude SLA if you are applying for a special quality of services.
SLA (Service Level Agreement) is a tool that regulates the relationship between the customer and the performer in a quality field. It contains a request for the level of service and results. It complements the normal contract and is not binding.
- Interact with all performers on your project.
Discuss with the agency the opportunity to communicate with people who are responsible for performing various tasks (texts, videos, photos, advertising). It will save from a damaged phone.
What in no case can not do
- Climb with tips on promotion, if you do not have relevant knowledge. In case of doubt in the methods of AI, hire an independent auditor. Warn performers about checking for explanations. If the auditor assesses the actions of the IA as unacceptable, draw up a protocol of disagreements and ask for the elimination of errors or terminate the contract.
- Hide that they did not understand something.
- Do not make a request for a specific list of services. Give MA the opportunity to understand the business and propose solutions. A fresh look is always helpful.
- To part militarily, if the cooperation did not work out. Solve issues within the legal framework, write negative reviews, but do not lie and do not embellish.
Use these rules and be able to get along with any marketing agency. Good luck!