when to get a new agency

The Importance of an Agency Partnership (and When to Find a New One)

Having an agency partnership is invaluable. You might have an agency on retainer to manage all of your content marketing, or simply use an agency once a year to complete the only thing you don’t handle in house – the annual report.

Either way, you’re a winner! You understand that nobody has 32 hours in a day, and a good agency is a like a secret weapon in your back pocket.

Just like having a nanny who knows where everything is in your house, and is able to care for and know your children almost as well as you do, an agency partner understands your business, takes the time to learn and understand your business goals, and works hard to help you achieve them.

Is that what you’re getting from your agency partnership?

Your current marketing team may be a team of one.

A lot is asked of marketing directors these days, but it’s impossible to do everything. Some in-house marketers are expected to be writers, graphic designers, social media mangers, SEO experts, video producers, web developers, customer service reps – and the list goes on.

In this situation, a good agency partnership is valuable because it can provide the right sort of team members to help out as certain projects pop up.

Need a video produced that’s better than what you can shoot on your iPhone? Don’t understand the difference between SEO, the CIA, and a BLT? Can’t even figure out how to open Photoshop?

That’s okay! Being a jack of all trades makes you a master of none. Your time is probably best spent focusing on your particular area of expertise. An agency can add strength where there are weaknesses in your in-house marketing team.

On the other hand, you may already have a large internal marketing department. Yet for some reason, that blog post never gets written, and the website that was on your plate for 2016 is now being moved to 2017 while you are putting out another fire.

Sound familiar? You are not alone.

Having an agency that understands your business and can speak in your brand voice will help. The right marketing strategy maintains the awareness you’ve fought to achieve and builds on it even more – while you go put out another fire.

4 Signs It’s Time to Choose a New Ad Agency

1. Communication Breakdowns

When you call or email and you don’t get a response. This could be a sign that you are not an agency’s “big fish” anymore.

Maybe you feel like you’ve been replaced by some new client, and it almost feels like you’re being cheated on.

It shouldn’t happen … but it does.

Big or small, every client deserves to get what they paid for, so don’t let your agency give you the cold shoulder.

What’s almost as bad as getting ignored is not being heard. If your suggestions and concerns seem like they’re going in one ear and out the other, you’re not getting the teamwork mentality you need.

2. They’re a Little Too Old School

Do you ever feel like you know more about the latest marketing innovations than the people you’re paying to help you? Are they suggesting outdated strategies you have no faith in at all?

That’s not a good sign.

Another time to look for a new agency is if they’ve failed to stay current and are no longer making recommendations at all. The marketing world is changing fast, and your agency should be on top of it.

Maybe you haven’t received any advice about what’s trending in your industry, and it seems like your agency is no longer pushing to help take your business further with a new campaign. Don’t let them hold you back!

3. They Don’t Have the Right Resources

Some agencies do a ton of PR and a bang up job with media buying, but they are unable to build a website for you. Others could be social media experts, but they don’t have the writers to create the kind of in-depth content that your audience finds valuable and generates leads.

Not every advertising and marketing agency is a “full service” agency. However, that may or may not be what you really need.

The most important thing an agency can do is understand your company’s goals and objectives and help you achieve them.

Whatever the case may be, it’s always good to know what resources an agency partnership can provide. You should at least have conversations with agencies in your area to find out what they bring to the table.

4. They Aren’t Making You Look Good

Want to look good in front of the boss?

If you’re a marketing director, your agency should have your back and assist in building your professional credibility while convincing the leadership team to vote in your direction.

What that means is, when you have a good idea, your agency should confirm it and stand by your strategy. Then they should help you execute that idea with results that blow everyone away.

Of course, new ideas should come from within your agency, too. The nice thing is, you’ll still get to take some credit!

The next time an agency new business person asks to buy you coffee say “YES!”

You never know when a big idea will land on your plate. Imagine bringing a groundbreaking marketing concept to your boss and being confident enough to say you know exactly how to handle it!

Whether your company needs a project with a quick turnaround, or a complete brand overhaul … your advertising and marketing agency should have the resources to make you look like a million bucks!

Want to start building your resource toolbox?  Element provides everything from in-house custom web development and video production to content creation and public relations.

Get to know more about what Element does! Give Lisa a call or email her at [email protected]

Director of Business Development
Lisa Gaupp is Element's road warrior. She's a people person who brings proven tactics and a disciplined organized approach to the free spirited, thought-provoking mixing bowl that is an agency. Lisa and her husband are raising two boys in the Fox Valley, and she still has her Little Kickers championship soccer trophy from 2nd grade.