little red flag

4 Red Flags Your Digital Marketing Agency Might Miss

Whether you’re considering hiring a digital marketing agency or have been working with one for years, there are certain things your marketing agency should never do. Keep reading to learn what these red flags are and how to look out for them – you might be surprised.

1. Be a ‘Yes-Man’

If your marketing agency never gives you pushback, never tries to get you out of your comfort zone, or doesn’t really get into the nitty-gritty of what exactly they’re doing for you – you’re working with a yes-man. You want to work with a marketing agency that feels like an extension of your team as if they worked in-house with you. The right marketing partner will stop at nothing to help you achieve your goals and guide you on the path to success.

Since working with a marketing agency is a partnership, there should be give and take and constructive conversation about what’s in your best interest. A trusted partner will give you an honest opinion on ideas that are great, while also giving you a strategic, real-world take on any ideas you think are amazing but might not actually be in your best interest.

Your marketing agency is more than just a partner, they’re like a best friend always looking out for your best interests and keeping it real with you. And when it comes to your brand, you need a marketing agency that will both support you and push back when needed.

2. Offer a Cookie-Cutter Solution

A good marketing agency will take the time to develop a strategy that meets your business’s unique needs and goals. Be wary of an agency that takes a black-and-white approach. You’ll be able to tell the type of agency you’re working with by how they initiate things with you and whether or not they adjust and adapt as needed. If you’re working with an agency that doesn’t flex and flow or offer data-driven solutions – it might be time to reconsider who you’re working with. Because chances are, they’re offering all of their clients the same strategies and making all the same promises.

Your business is constantly changing and evolving, just like the digital marketing industry. With these two things ever-changing, you need someone in your corner who can create a flexible plan designed to meet your needs and is ready to pivot when needed.

Additionally, you want to partner with a marketing agency that is transparent, honest, and always keeping a line of communication open with you. If you have questions, you deserve honest answers.

Transparency and open communication are two things we strongly believe in here at WebLocal. When you work with us, we’ll take the time to get to know your business from the inside out so that we can gain a thorough understanding of your needs, struggles, successes, and goals. And on top of that, we stay honest with our clients every step of the way. This is your marketing plan we’re talking about after all – you should be just as much a part of the process as we are.

3. Promise the World

And by the world, we mean things like promising the #1 spot on Google search results from day one or boosting your social following to one million in one month. While these might be real goals for some, you’ll only get these things quickly through shady, fleeting tactics that won’t last in the long run.

When it comes to establishing a partnership with a client, we always err on the side of under-promising and over-delivering. Anything else is reckless, careless, and frankly, a huge red flag.

The only way to long-lasting success is by working with a digital marketing agency that will help you build an effective paid search and social plan, create thoughtful campaigns for brand awareness, and develop strategies that will generate the most qualified leads possible. When it comes to digital marketing and the public face of your brand, it’s best to play the long game. This doesn’t mean you won’t see any results in the short term, but it does mean that you may have to be patient for results that will last.

Remember, good things take time. And by all means, you can shoot for the stars in terms of your marketing goals, but please work with an agency that won’t promise you the world without delivering an atlas.

4. Only Share the Good Stuff

Data is information – it’s how we know what is and isn’t working. Using hard numbers, graphs, and charts, you’re able to see how your marketing strategy is performing. While data can tell you how your business is accelerating and growing, it can also show you your pain points, weaknesses, and all the ways your strategy is underperforming. Unfortunately, many marketing agencies don’t shy away from manipulating data to paint a positive picture. This could look like making the good stuff look better and the bad stuff look not so bad, or only sharing the good stuff and leaving out all the bad. Either way, it’s dishonest.

Whether your brand is a household name or a start-up, you’re going to have good days and bad days, as well as good numbers and bad numbers. Some campaigns will be home runs while others will flop – that’s just the way it goes. The data presented to you should reflect reality, not just what your agency wants you to think. But this isn’t a bad thing. In fact, hard data is the best way to know what and how to improve. And how your marketing agency responds to this data is how you’ll know the type of agency you’re working with. If they create an action plan and adjust and adapt as needed, showing you how said changes perform along the way, you’ll know you’re working with an all-star team. As we said, if your agency only shares the good stuff, or overinflates the good stuff, you’ll want to start asking some questions. Additionally, just because the data looks good, that doesn’t mean changes can’t still happen. Digital marketing is always evolving, with new tactics and ideas being strategized all the time. Now in some cases, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. But if things are looking good and your agency has ideas of making things look even better, that’s a conversation worth having.

The Takeaway

The key takeaway here is that an honest, transparent agency that creates a strategy around your unique needs and is ready to adjust as needed is the type of partner you should be working with. You want to work with an agency that has clearly defined processes for onboarding, managing your account, timelines, communication tactics, and more. Remember, your marketing agency is an extension of your team, so take the time to partner with an agency you trust.

When you work with WebLocal, you won’t have to worry about the things listed above. Transparency, honesty, data-driven solutions, flexibility, and the willingness to pivot when things just aren’t working is what you can expect as a client of ours. We’re the type of agency that invests in you, your future, and your goals. Ready to talk? If so, click here.

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