I find myself doing this more and more lately because I've discovered I know as much as if not more about social media than the agencies I am hiring. I'm not just testing agencies that I currently work with but more often than not I test agencies I'm considering working with. If you are an agency here are a few thoughts to keep in mind. I'm just one marketer so take this for what it's worth to you. These are some questions I ask.
- What would you do if you were me right now? – this is probably the easiest question for them to answer because likely they have been thinking about this.
- What's an opportunity I have missed? – this will tell you if they've analyzed what you've done so far, or even know for that matter. Did they do their homework, are they aware of your brand history in this space?
- What's something you love a competitor or partner of mine has done? – this will show you if they are paying attention to current campaigns besides just their clients. Watch this one, giving standard answers like the subservient chicken would warrant a follow up question like, Why? I also set boundaries like "in the last two month"
- Twice now I've been interested in contacting agencies from something I've seen or read. I didn't know anyone there so I've sent emails from the 'contact us' link on their site. This has yet to get any response at all. I've also put out a call on Twitter to see if they are combing the web for mention of their agency. Surprisingly this hasn't worked either. Man would I be impressed with an agency and definitely want to work with them if they picked up my mention in Twitter and responded.
- This is not the time to play it close to the vest. I was at an agency not long ago that failed to mention a partnership they had with a vendor I was interested in working with. I had to connect the dots and bring it back to the agencies attention. This led me to feel the agency wasn't sharing all options with me. Not sure why this was the case, but confusing for me none the less.
It's an interesting time to be a marketer. So much to keep up on if you are in digital marketing. I see the agency/client relationship as a partnership and as such I bring as much input to the ideas as the agency does. Long gone are the days we as clients sit back in our smoke filled board rooms (think Mad Men) and wait for creative agencies to bring the dazzle.