If you have not worked with a marketing or PR agency before, it can be difficult to know what to expect, where the lines of responsibility are drawn and what actions are divided between you and the agency.
We have certainly learned over the years that communication is the key to success! You will be assigned an Account Manager who will be your key point of contact. You’ll probably also have access to an Account Executive that will assist the Account Manager, and in the case of KC Communications, you will also have contact details of the Managing Director. Your Account Manager will regularly be in touch, at the end of the phone, an email and of course having regular meetings.
To enable the agency to get the best results, they will require quite a lot of input from you, especially in the first few months. This is because YOU are the expert in your business, and you have the information and news to share that will enable the agency to get the best results for you. It might help to assign an internal person to be the key point of contact for the agency, who has the responsibility of sharing business news and information, as well as approving any content or material that the agency requires. After an initial few months of working together, an agency will be confident in replicating your tone of voice, opinions and messaging and will need less input from you. They can then fully take the reins and really get creative!
An agency should also request your business goals and objectives to make sure that the marketing strategy aligns with them. This will ensure that the agency is able to work towards achieving your results and can monitor and measure their success based on this. You should expect them to be completely honest with you and challenge you if they think certain types of activity are going to help or hinder your success. We believe this is one of our strong points here at KC Communications, and our clients think so too.
Ideally, you will have chosen your agency based on the skill set they have stated that they have. However, in marketing and PR, the industry moves so quickly as technology and trends advance that qualifications can become out of date within months. So, make sure that the agency invests in the ongoing development and training of staff so that they are able to stay ahead of your competition and of course come up with new and innovative ideas.
A decent agency will have access to a range of industry tools to enable them to do their jobs efficiently and to the highest standard on your behalf. These range from website tracking and analytics tools, to press tracking software, media databases, creative software, and even project management tools. Your agency should request access to any of your current tracking tools and use their own to provide detailed reports to you. We have recently started working with a project management tool to avoid endless email threads where information gets lots and productivity is hindered.
Any reports that your agency provides to you should be in-depth and contextual. They should not just state the figures, but analyse, explain and make recommendations based on them. The reports should also take the whole campaigns across all channels and platforms into account and analyse based on cross-referenced data. There is no point in having reams of numbers if they don’t make any sense!
Last but not least, your agency should seem an extended part of your own in-house team. There should be weekly check-ins and quarterly strategy meetings at least. The closer that you and the agency work together, the better the results will be. So why not get in touch to see how we can work together?