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9 Non-Negotiable Qualities of a Good Digital Marketing Consultancy

Digital Marketing Consultancy

How to Choose a Great Digital Marketing Consultancy

Hiring a digital marketing consultancy that’ll guarantee first rate results is more difficult than ever.

Digital marketing is growing at breakneck speeds. And with it, so many digital marketing consultancies are popping up to help businesses navigate the uncharted territory of this relatively new medium.

But you can’t just choose anyone.

You need to be very meticulous and crystal clear about who you hire and what they can bring to your business.

We’ll show you the key signs and qualities of every great digital marketing consultancy whilst helping you avoid costly mistakes that’ll hurt your business.

1. They Blog about Digital Marketing Regularly

A great digital marketing consultancy understands the impact of blogging for business.

After all, blogging is at the forefront of every well-oiled SEO machine acting as your sales team.

Good digital marketing consultancies practice what they teach. Do your homework and verify that they have in-depth knowledge about the services they provide by taking a hard look at their blog.

If they produce regular content on a range of digital marketing topics, chances are they’re pretty damn good at it.

Don’t let them off the hook just because they blog regularly.

Their content must contain highly actionable ideas you can implement in your business right away.

Don’t pick a digital marketing consultancy if their content is all skin and no meat. What you need are digital marketing superstars. People who’ve had repeat successes implementing their strategies.

2. They Wear Many Hats

Digital Marketing Consultancy

Remember what you’re looking for. You need a digital marketing consultancy who’ll advise you on your overall digital marketing strategy.

Whilst this does include key skills such as how to identify hidden SEO opportunities, they must also have experience with a range of other digital marketing channels too.

They should be able to look at your entire digital marketing strategy and advise you on the best way to approach each aspect.

You’re not looking for a social media marketing wizard.

You need someone who can reconstruct your social media marketing strategy in a way which aligns with your overall business goals.

After all, that’s what it really comes down to.

You want to feel safe knowing they have the ideas, experience and personnel to get you up to speed in the following areas.

  • Content marketing and SEO
  • Email marketing and marketing automation
  • Pay-per-click advertising (Google and Facebook)
  • Social media marketing (organic and paid)
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Copywriting
  • Referral marketing
  • Video marketing

A glimpse at their website should tell you whether they have experience in digital marketing as a whole or a specific area.

3. Their “About Section” & “Team Pages” Convey Authority

Take a thorough look at their about section & team pages.

Does it scream “digital marketing experts”? Or does it give you the feeling your business’s needs will be outsourced or palmed off to less experienced junior staff?

Whilst the digital marketing industry is an attractive career route for young people, it takes many years to become adept and to understand how to apply growth strategies to businesses with multiple moving parts.

It’s one thing to be a digital marketing enthusiast who dips in several projects from time to time.

But to be a digital marketing professional who can advise and implement appropriate marketing methods for businesses of all sizes, is a completely different ball game.

Go a step further and look at their LinkedIn profiles

What’s the general consensus?

Have they only worked on 2 projects in their whole career? Have they recently switched career paths?

Are they so young that they recently entered this field because it’s got a “New iPhone” feel to it?

Doing this will save you a fortune.

After all your business’s future depends on it. And the last thing you want to do is hand over your SEO campaign to a novice with only a year’s experience.

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Our turnover went from £214,000 to £608,000 after working with Grow

4. They’re Committed to Understanding Your Business Challenges

Good digital marketing consultancies show genuine interest in your business. You’re not just a walking cheque book to them.

During conversations with you, they’ll prioritise tasks which help alleviate your biggest business challenges.

Everything else is secondary.

You need to feel like there’s chemistry, mutual understanding and a shared interest in growing your business.

After all, you’ll be doing your business a disservice by spending time, energy and money hiring a digital marketing consultancy who appears busy, by tackling low-impact issues.

They might do a fantastic job and maybe even put your business back on the map.

However, if your key problems still exist after working with them or it takes 3 months before they look at them, it’s still lost revenue.

You must also have shared expectations. If you hire a digital marketing consultancy who has no experience working with small businesses, they could struggle to get things moving quickly.

You can’t expect 20% traffic growth month-over-month, if your digital marketing consultancy has never had limited budgets to work with.

Expectations must be realistic, and set with both parties’ input.

Doing this from the beginning helps foster trust on both sides and leads to a better working relationship.

5. They Know Which 3 Digital Marketing Channels You Should Experiment with

There’s always a new app, tool and social media platform on the block.

The biggest marketing sites will write a myriad of articles which essentially, all say the same thing.

“100 Reasons Why Your Business Will Crumble and Burn If You’re Not Marketing on X.”

No. Your business will not “crumble and burn” if you’re not present there. And a good digital marketing consultancy knows this and will explain it to you.

They know you have limited resources. So, they’ll recommend a few marketing channels that’ll generate the biggest returns for your business.

The internet is littered with “Top 50 Channels To Market Your Business On With Limited Budget” articles. It doesn’t mean you’ll get results with them though.

Your buyer personas are different. And so are the places where they congregate. A great digital marketing consultancy recognises this, and will only recommend places where you can drive targeted traffic.

For example, imagine you have an online dating website.

Discounting general marketing channels like Facebook and organic SEO, which places should you spend time marketing on?

Other relationship forums, websites and industry experts.

There are hordes of websites teaching the complicated intricacies of modern online dating.

You can easily get your dating app on the map by building relationships with people who can give your VIP access to your target audience.

A great digital marketing consultancy will provide a list of relevant communities and industry experts worth contacting today. And if they’re any good at copywriting (they should be), they’ll help you compose a great intro email.

6. They Know How Great Design Impacts Conversions

All good digital marketing consultancies know there is a positive correlation between great web design and high conversions. They also know that incredible website design doesn’t rely solely on pretty visuals or nifty gimmicks.

It’s all about user experience.

They should be able to recommend web design solutions which support your business’ goals.

For example, if getting email subscribers is your priority, your home page must be designed with elements which help achieve this goal. All without sacrificing good user experience.

A good way to know they understand this is to look at their website.

Is it pretty to look at, but lacking in functionality? Or is it incredibly useful, but looks ugly on mobile devices?

With the amount of quality WordPress themes on the market today, there is no excuse for having a website that looks like you’re still in 1997.

After all, great web design fosters trust. And once people trust you, they’ll be more likely to buy from you.

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Grow’s marketing advice has added over £200,000 to our turnover this year – it’s been our best year yet!

7. They’re Continually Expanding Their Knowledge on Digital Marketing

Marketing is a fast-moving world.

As a business owner who wants to build a profitable brand online, you can’t afford to be left in the dark.

Regardless of how experienced a digital marketing consultancy is, they should always be learning.

Whether clients refer to them as “Kings of Digital Marketing” means diddly squat, if their teachings are now out of date.

Nobody knows everything.

There are new tools, methods, strategies and apps coming out every day to help you improve your marketing.

It’s not worth learning from someone who refuses to learn new things themselves. Besides, nobody likes a know-it-all.

They must continually learn and be hyperactive in the digital marketing space.

If they don’t attend key marketing events or invest in their own development and learning, then how are they improving?

Ask them which marketers they respect or look up to. Ask them what marketing materials they’re currently studying.

What you want is specific names of resources and people worth learning from.

You probably won’t know who these people are. And that’s a good thing, as it suggests they have a keen eye for finding good things.

8. They Implore You to Contact Past Clients

A good digital marketing consultancy will encourage you to talk to past clients they’ve worked with.

If they’re really confident in their ability to grow your business, they’ll give links to their client’s website, key contact information and social media profiles so you can start a conversation.

Why would they do this? Because they know the potential for sales through word-of-mouth marketing is huge. But also, because they’re not afraid of what past clients will say about them.

This leads on to my next point.

9. Their Testimonials Alone Make You Want to do Business with Them

Read their testimonials and case studies throughly. Do they persuade you to take out your credit card?

What makes a great testimonial better than a good testimonial is in the details.

Testimonials filled with positive action words might sound impressive but this alone doesn’t showcase the real impact made on their business.

A gripping testimonial highlights their key business challenges, actions taken and impact made in real numbers.

Whilst their testimonials won’t guarantee you’ll get similar results, they fill you with confidence going forward.

In other words, you’ll know your business will come out in better shape after working with them.

Example of a great testimonial

“MRR (Monthly Recurring Revenue) doubled after 3 months working with X.

We were haemorrhaging money – spending thousands of pounds marketing on channels where our customers didn’t congregate.

He helped us create a buyer persona. A real person with a name, profession and most importantly a face.

We came away from our first session with a 36-point action plan which we implemented with haste. Since then revenue from recurring online sales have doubled.”

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Our revenue increased by 50% after 6 months of working with Grow

Greg Gillespie

The London Academy of Dance

Find out how we can help your business Grow »

10. They Give You the Confidence to Leave Early on

Even the best digital marketing consultancy isn’t immune from failure.

Regardless of what plans they come up with or implement, your business may still fail to move forward.

There must be shared risk and understanding between all parties.

What you don’t want is to put a down payment of 3 months’ worth of marketing help, only to later realise, they’re not the right fit or don’t understand the needs of your business.

A good digital marketing consultancy knows this and won’t tie you down to a monthly retainer.

This is why risk has to be shared between you both. As it gives you the confidence to leave early on, before making an investment that will hurt your business.

Grow has nearly 2 decades of experience working with businesses just like yours. Read our marketing consultancy page to learn how we can help your business grow. And don’t forget to judge us based on the 10 points we’ve stressed on this page.