Looking for a B2B Inbound Marketing agency? Don’t make another move until you consider this: Do you want to pay for a service or build a partnership? Yes, an exchange of money is involved in either case, but one gives you greater and more sustainable value.
An Inbound Marketing agency won’t be as effective if they’re a one-off, hired gun. Developing a deep understanding of your company and its customers takes time and dedication. To execute a successful campaign you’re going to need a partner in crime (the legal kind).
Spotting the right collaborator requires a trained eye. Even if you feel you don’t quite have it yet, you’ll quickly get the hang of it. Nothing’s ever full-proof, but there are a few signs that speak volumes about an agency.
Check them out for yourself!
Are They Using Inbound for Themselves?
An agency just can’t talk Inbound; they have to walk the walk.
For a quick and easy background check, start your evaluation with their website. Keep these points in mind:
- Can you navigate their site without difficulty? Does their blog jump out at you?
- Is their content relevant and engaging? Do you feel like reading more?
- See any Call-to-Actions? If so, do they draw you to their Premium Content Offers?
- Is there a strategy behind the content? Do the posts seem haphazard?
If the answer to most of these questions is “no”, you should say “no thank you”. It’s unsettling when an Inbound expert doesn’t apply their specialty to their website.
Do They Have Time for You?
You might have found the perfect Inbound agency, but they won’t be much of an asset to you if they’re spread too thin.
Your future Inbound partner should be able to commit to the following:
- At the bare minimum, an hour a week to review results and discuss strategy.
- Do they have the resources to get the job done on time? Content creation isn’t a one person show. Every good team has a Content Strategist, a Writer/Editor, a SEO Wiz, a Designer, and a Developer.
- Do they prioritize a long-term strategy? It typically takes about 6 months before Inbound Marketing shows significant results.
- Overall, your partner has to have the availability to dedicate 40-50 hours per month to your business.
How Do They Determine Success?
Inbound Marketing success goes hand in hand with lots of web traffic and qualified leads. However, that’s the destination. How you get there, and knowing if you’re on the right track isn’t as obvious.
How are analytics gathered? How do the metrics reflect the effectiveness of your campaign?
These are just a small sampling of the questions that an agency has to answer to determine what marks “success” for your business. A milestone for one company, could mean disaster for another. Be skeptical of a guarantee of “success” that isn’t specific to your brand and market.
How Do They View You?
Remember the question about considering an agency as a service provider or a partner? In a similar vein, it’s crucial to be mindful of your potential partner’s motivation.
A hired gun is only out for a big payday, while a partner is focused on building a mutually beneficial relationship. Here’s how you can tell the difference:
- Do they genuinely support your company’s mission?
- Does their previous work embody a consumer-centric, solution-oriented approach?
- What’s their level of enthusiasm? Do they ask more than the basic, run-of-the-mill questions?
- Is a long-term strategy a top priority, or are they more focused on the short-term?
If they’re still looking good at this point, you might have found your Inbound match-made-in-heaven.
The Bottom Line
There’s a lot to take in when choosing the best Inbound Marketing partner for your company. Don’t feel like you have to rush things. You want to get this right, so it’s okay to take your time. The right agency will understand this and move patiently with you.