7 Questions to Ask When Hiring a Content Marketing Agency
With so many content marketing agencies in the market, selecting the best is often a tough choice to make. First, you want to be sure that the price you pay for your project will deliver ROI. Remember, this decision will be a major part of your company’s entire marketing process, so you need to be keen throughout the hiring process.
In contrast to relying on your in-house team or hiring freelancers, a content marketing agency offers the advantage of quickly seeing results with minimal effort on your end. But not all agencies are created equal, and before you hire one, you must ensure that they’re the right agency fit for your business.
After you identify the potential agencies you’d like to consider further, here are the top seven questions to ask them before signing any paperwork:
1. What Is Your Experience in Our Industry?
While industry knowledge doesn’t make or break a decision to hire, it’s one of the vital factors to consider. If the agency you’re working with already has experience working in your industry, they will have a solid understanding of what makes for compelling content. This means they’ll need to do less research and there’ll be less transition time when they start working for you.
However, bear in mind that the demand for content is always high, and quality ranks over quantity. You may be dealing with a start-up agency that may lack the required experience but is highly motivated to build their brand, and they’re going to put every effort into making sure you are happy. A good content marketing agency will still capture your voice and style without previous experience.
2. What Strategies Did Your Agency Implement for Your Brand?
Take a step back from your content marketing goals and ask your prospective agency about their marketing strategies. Here are some points to consider:
- Why did you decide to take on a specific strategy?
- How do you keep up with the marketing trends?
- What have been the results of your marketing efforts?
- What key lessons have you learned from using your strategies in your business?
A content marketing agency that practices what they preach shows that they believe in the tactics they’re selling. They should demonstrate that they are their marketing practices’ best case study.
3. Can We See Examples of Different Types of Content You’ve Created?
It’s one thing for a content marketing agency to say it can create quality content; it’s another thing for them to have done it. You want to see examples of the agency’s past work before you start working with them.
At this point and time, agencies need to showcase their previous work. It boosts trust and provides insight into how they can successfully run events, campaigns, and projects for clients. The agency can provide case studies of past success stories, they can provide you with the names of their past or current clients, or they can just send a portfolio of their content. Whatever ways they use, make sure that you like the kind of work they’re presenting.
4. What Is Your Research Process?
The content marketing agency needs to understand your industry’s voice, style, and content quality before they begin creating content for your audience. So, this means there’ll be a lot of research to be done at the beginning.
A good agency should have a high level of knowledge in your industry. Find out how your content agency conducts research and if they charge any fee for the time used. Research processes may differ from agency to agency. Here are a few elements that your agency’s research process should include:
- Understand your company
- Understand your goals and objectives
- Know your target audience
- Understand industry and market research
- Know how to conduct competitor analysis
5. How Do You Choose Which Writer Will Be on My Account?
You don’t want to find out too late that the agency has randomly assigned someone to your account from a pool of freelance writers who may or may not have the experience and skills required to create your content. Many content marketing agencies will have a combination of in-house writers and trusted freelancers who have specific subject matter expertise. You can always ask the agency to send you content samples of potential writers that may be assigned to your account beforehand to help you decide whether you want to work with them or not.
6. How Much Will Your Services Cost?
Cost should be one of the last considerations. Always ask this question next to last. You don’t want to risk losing the perfect agency because the price tag was a little higher than you expected. While you need to stay within the budget, keep in mind that cheaper doesn’t necessarily mean better. If the agency is the best fit for you, but they’re a bit costly, don’t settle for a lesser fit agency just to save on marketing costs.
Every agency structures its fees differently, so make sure that you understand the agency’s pricing model. It can be hourly, by the word, or project-based. Look at the value you get for what you’re paying. Also, inquire about the deliverables you should expect, the contract length, and what happens if you want to end the contract.
7. Why Are You the Best Fit for Our Business?
Finally, give your prospective agency a last chance to give their sales pitch and share how they’re going to meet your content marketing needs. Hiring a content agency can be stressful, so it’s important to let them express themselves to help you make the right decision.
Investing in content marketing means high ROI if you work with the right agency. If you’re planning to hire a content marketing agency, make sure you get the right answers to these questions. What’s more important is making sure they have the expertise to help you achieve your goals.
To learn more about content marketing, check out our blog.