6 Red Flags To Look For When Choosing a Digital Advertising Agency

The internet together with, what is more commonly referred to as the “worldwide web”, has completely changed human life ever since their convergence and subsequent global access over 30 years ago. So, what started as just a novel way to interconnect a group of super computers in order to pass information is now so much more. With long existing communication methods/media such as: radio, newspapers, telephones, paper mail and television being redefined to new resources such as email, Internet telephone, Internet television, online music, digital newspapers, and video streaming websites; Add to that the business opportunities provided through electronic commerce such as: mobile commerce, electronic funds transfer, supply chain management, Internet marketing, online transaction processing, electronic data interchange (EDI), inventory management systems, and automated data collection systems and you understand how ingrained the internet has become in present day society. At this moment many companies around the world are currently reviewing their various models in order to integrate an approach that would allow their business to be, easily, conducted online. Fortunately, ever since the Internet and World Wide Web were created, there has been a race to use the infrastructure of the internet, having billions of devices connected to millions of networks, in order to access the billions of related web pages provided by the World Wide Web and from that equate value either through direct B2C (business to consumer) sales, through advertising online via ‘clicks’/views or by other means. The goal is to bring as much organic traffic to a business website as possible, create and deliver the right message through the right online medium and generate sales ready leads within a sales funnel. That is when a digital advertising agency is needed. Digital advertising is about developing a customized digital marketing strategy that includes the most appropriate digital marketing platforms that fit a business’ target audience, and of course, their budget. Clients have a business or product that needs marketing, but do they have a feel for their knowledge and perspective of this digital age? Clients really just want to know that social media can build their business and make money! Many clients have had their businesses or have established their brand for decades, critically, with limited or no help from technology. But during the course of everyday life, clients might do something as simple as sending emails or check Facebook and then decide that maybe digital advertising could be somewhat useful to their business. This is unfortunately where the disconnect can begin. So business owners have to be extra judicious in selecting what would be their online representation. Because, unfortunately while there are now plenty of digital advertising agency options, there are quite a few reasons why businesses should look keenly at all the possible red flags that may deter them from associating with the wrong digital advertising agency.

Digital Advertising Agency Red Flags

  1. Using Overly Promotional Content –   Some agencies focus on promoting their business more effectively through communication tactics than the clients they represent. Businesses should remember it should be about their audience – not the digital advertising agency’s.
  2. Lacking Conversation – Businesses shouldn’t let dialog about their company or product happen without them. Digital advertising agencies should not be ignoring their clients and should be proactively reaching out to them to keep them in the loop about what is happening regarding their online presence. There should always open communication and conversations between digital advertising agencies and their clients
  3. Forgetting to Monitor – to double down on the previous point about regular and open conversations between digital advertising agencies and their clientele. Another red flag when digital business owners are vetting prospective digital advertising agencies to work with is to find out how proactive they are in monitoring. Are they actively listening to what is being said about their clients’ brand? Remember one false move could cost a company millions to try to rectify so, as with everything, it depends on what is allowed. Both sides have to be as proactive as possible in order to stay on top of things.
  4. Assuming Everyone Cares – Does the digital advertising agency understand their client’s audience, and is the agency giving the audience what they want or are they feeding both their clients and their clients’ audience what the digital advertising agency thinks they want to see? It should be noted that, nobody cares about a company, brand or product unless someone gives them a reason to care. Understanding where the audience communicates, and how, will lead to better focus and ownership of the channels available. If a digital advertising agency is trying to connect a business with everyone, then chances are they will end up connecting with no one.
  5. Missing the Incentive to Like – Is the digital advertising agency giving people a reason to ‘like’ or follow their clients, or are they just regurgitating boring content that can be found all over the internet?  Digital advertising agencies should provide their customers with the best possible, long-term digital marketing campaigns, and to ensure the content is always used to the digital business owners benefit and never falls into the hands of a competitor. It is advised that companies must ascertain ownership over all their digital assets, at all times. Any digital advertising agency that refuses to comply, would therefore be a poor fit for any business.
  6. Lacking Creativity – Just because it is a business page, doesn’t mean it has to be boring. People crave content that is fun, sparks controversy, or opens the door to conversation. Social media followers don’t want a news feed or an advertisement. These decisions can only be made if there is a synergy between the digital advertising agency and their client which indicates some form of understanding of business goals and achievable targets. Potential customers need a lot of repetition to see and internalize messages being put out by digital agencies. They need to see the collaborative, between the digital advertising agency and the digital business owners, creative messages probably hundreds of times before that message really impacts. That means that there is no need to change creative direction every few months (or even every year) if it’s working.

It is instructive to understand it is ultimately a people business. So the relationship between a digital advertising agency and a digital business owner may change several times before arriving at a comfortable space for all parties involved. A client could change digital advertising agencies every year because each agency might provide something different for their company’s journey. And that would be fine as the goal for every digital advertising agency is to see their clients grow even if it means the agency help them to grow past the need of their services.

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