A good branding agency can help you transform your business and reach new markets and customers. But how do you choose the right one?
Let’s be honest – hiring an agency is a significant investment. And the returns on that investment won’t be immediate. But it can still be a move worth making, even in the early days of your business. Here are some of the reasons an agency could be the best option for your company.
So if you’ve decided that hiring an agency is right for you, here are some key pointers for how to do it.
Consider whether the agency will be able to work in partnership with you beyond the short-term objective of your current project. Can they contribute to your regular marketing activities, for example by managing your social media presence? Do they have a range of services you could see yourself using as your company grows? How about their communication – is it easy to get on a call with them when you need to?
Being unique, fresh and different is definitely something an agency should be able to excel at, and many agencies pride themselves on being one of a kind. But a lack of common terminology and service descriptions can sometimes make it tricky for potential clients to compare offerings and choose between different agencies. Here are some ways to make sure you’re not comparing apples with oranges.
The day rate may be used to calculate a quote or an estimate for the work which you and the agency agree on at the outset, or it can be used on a ‘time and materials’ basis, where the amount you spend is left open-ended so the scope of the project can evolve over time.
Another way of billing is to charge a fixed fee. This is where a product or service always costs the same, and it usually indicates that the agency has a well-established process that they use for all their clients.
Look at the agency’s ‘about us’ page on their website, or review their personnel profiles on LinkedIn, and see what kind of skill-sets are represented and how many staff are employed within each specialism.
For example, are there a lot of senior-level coders and developers, but only a single copywriter or designer? This may indicate that the agency’s strength is design-and-build or app development projects rather than creative ones.
While it’s not an exact science, looking at awards and affiliations in conjunction with the other tips above can be a helpful way to narrow down your choices.