1. Who are your clients?Are the agency’s current clients and campaigns similar to your line of business? Look for an agency with expertise in your company’s market. High-tech companies shouldn’t hire retail advertising agencies.
2. How long have you operated?Select an agency that can prove its financial and personnel stability. Longevity also indicates the level of experience in the markets the agency touts as its specialties. There has been considerable consolidation in the industry. Make sure the agency is a strong survivor, not struggling to compete.
3. How big are you?Size matters for advertising agencies. A small startup shouldn’t hire a big agency, which likely will be too costly and won’t be able to advertise effectively on your company’s scale or give your campaign the attention you deserve.
4. When can we meet with your team?Meet with the potential advertising team early and often before you make your final decision. Really get a good feel on whether that team consists of the kind of people you want to work with and who have sufficient experience, energy and creativity in your company’s market. Also ask yourself: Does it seem like they are recycling old concepts?
5. What do you do besides advertising?Nowadays, advertising agencies must do much more than merely design ad campaigns. They should also be able to handle branding and messaging, marketing consultation, and public relations. That mix gives them a 360-degree approach to marketing and, more importantly, helps cut your marketing costs.
6. What are your ethical standards?People in advertising constantly face ethical choices. Ads for reputable companies should not have to lie or even exaggerate, and an agency’s client companies must be able to verify the claims they make about the products in their ad campaigns.
7. What is your methodology for developing ad campaigns?Often, agencies will begin by pitching products or services to potential customers before choosing the type of ad to run. They will usually tailor their methods to a list of goals your company offers them, but make sure your goals align well with their services.
Catch up on my current posts along with industry articles