Landing a significant marketing communications project such as a new website, content marketing program or new product launch is always exciting and gratifying. And being the independent, resourceful soul that I am, I tend to prepare the entire plan before I arrive at my new client’s office charged with vision, a list of suppliers and a scheduled program.
That’s actually a good thing, I’ve discovered working as a marketing communications consultant. Being prepared is good. Believing you own the project, that’s another thing. If you are looking to hire a marketing consulting agency, here are a few tips to help guide you on who to choose.
Marketing Communications Agency Believes in Teamwork
As I’ve gained my experience throughout the years, I’ve realised that presenting a plan created by one person, can sometimes not be viewed as an asset but instead gave the client and the people around the table a weary feeling blended with a touch of distrust.
Even while many times only minor elements would be changed from my original plan, what was clearly happening was that the client and the team needed to arrive at the same place, the same vision as the person who created the plan; me, to make the project happen.
In other words, I needed to spend more time in the pre-planning stage with everyone involved in the project to make sure the team had buy-in and feels they had input in creating the plan. Tip #1: Everyone in the group needs to be or feel involved to help move the project forward.
Marketing Communications Consultant Is Part Of Your Team
This is the most important, whoever you hire should be treated as part of your team. Because you’ll end up spending a lot more money if you give a little bit of the project to the consultant without letting this person know of the whole program or future goals for your company.
Agencies, firms or consultants, which one you hire all will help to make swift and confident decisions, facilitate the entire project and at times will even educate your staff! Tip #2: Understand the benefits of a consultant, bring them into your team to move the project forward.
(And, yes its a Tweetable!)
Select Marketing Communications Agencies Based On Your Company Size
Tip #3: Select an agency based on the size of your business. I strongly believe that for early-stage companies, smaller manufacturing companies with less than 200 people or local spas and retail shops should hire smaller agencies. There are lots of advantages to hiring a boutique agency like The Marketing Boutique, especially being that big fish in a small pond is unbeatable. Smaller agencies win at speed of execution, agility, and responsiveness, including bringing in bandwidth and resources to help your program move forward.
Agencies Bring In Varied Skill Set For Marketing, Communications and Digital
Tip #4: Implement and benefit from best practices and current marketing trends. Today’s marketing is huge. Gone are the days when trade shows, brochures and newsletter are the only tactics needed to help sales. There are inbound/outbound tactics, integrated marketing communications programs and new technologies that can become time-consuming for your staff.
Even writing requires a specific set of skills, copywriting needs a level of creativity and writing for the web is another type of expertise. Agencies, like The Marketing Boutique, offer a variety of services because they’ve worked in different industries. Plus, it’s in their DNA to be a forever student, continually learning best practices and current marketing trends.
Decide what size Marketing Communications Firm is right for you.
Tip #5: Build Your Team-Based On Your Company Needs. That’s the good news. There are so many quality marketing communications and PR agencies out there today to choose from, large to small firms and both have their merits and downfalls. It can also feel overwhelming with so many options.
Size of the marketing communications firm matters. For example, if you are looking to launch a product and need lots of press, media relationships matter. On the other hand, successfully placing a story requires timing, a solid story pitch and opportunity and that because journalists are always looking for a great story. That’s more good news for you as you may not need to go with those large agencies. The important thing here is don’t equate size with ability!
If you need to outsource your marketing communications, we’re your team!
While you’re here why not check out BRANDED! Our online course developed for the small business owner or entrepreneur who wants to develop their brand plan. An affordable, self-paced e-course perfect for junior marketing staff, retail, shops and small to medium business.