If you’re looking for a content marketing agency, the vast amount of companies and services that they provide can seem overwhelming, to say the least. Luckily, there are a few tell-tale signs of a good and reputable agency that you can be on the lookout for when considering which company to work with.
1. A Good Website & Social Media Presence
The first thing you may come across when looking for an agency is their website or social media accounts. If you know what to look for, these can tell you a lot about the agency itself.
Is their website up-to-date? Are they active on social media, and is their brand recognizable and consistent? A good brand presence can tell you what the company’s all about. Their social media can also serve as a general idea of what the content services they would provide you would look like.
Although this can be a way to assess any type of company, it’s especially important for content marketing. After all, if a content marketing company doesn’t put out quality content itself, would you trust them to make you good content?
2. Proven Results
Website testimonials or case studies are a great way to judge a company.
A good content marketing agency should have proven results, shown through past clients’ reviews and testimonials. Past clients can also tell you an agency’s core niches and whether they’ve worked with content similar to yours in the past. The presence of long-term clients can tell you that an agency is trustworthy and reliable.
It’s also important to go past website testimonials, though. To truly know if a company is trustworthy, you can scour the internet for any possible negative feedback or cautions. Use a website like Clutch to get totally honest reviews.
If you’re seriously considering an agency that has a few bad reviews, don’t be too quick to judge.Try reaching out to the company to discuss any concerns you may have. If it’s a good company, they’ll be open to discuss how they’ve improved.
3. Modern and Effective Techniques
Content marketing in this day and age goes far beyond creating good content. Making sure the content reaches the right audiences is the second half of the battle.
Marketing strategies and research like Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, should be part of an effective content marketing strategy.
Ask about your potential agency’s SEO practices and make sure they’re doing the right keyword research, content analysis and optimization of meta descriptions.
4. A Diverse Staff
Diversity goes far beyond physical appearance. A diverse staff should include different niches, expertise, experience level and background. Consider things like age and expertise when looking at a company’s staff.
A diverse staff can bring the best of both worlds to your content. Your content will benefit from the knowledge that only comes with a long history in the industry paired with the innovation and creative ideas of someone newer to the field.
5. Solid Communication
One of the most important things when working with any kind of agency is a steady line of communication. Look beyond just basic communication, though. A lot of content agencies will be able to talk you up, but fall short on finished products. Make sure what they’re saying is in plain English instead of industry jargon and that what they’re saying aligns with your vision.
A good content marketing agency should reach out enough that you always know where your budget is going. They should keep you in the loop with where they’re at in the timeline for your project. Also, make sure that the agency puts you in direct contact with the employees that are working on your campaign. If not, you’ll risk your message getting lost in translation.
Communication goes both ways, too. Do your work with an agency that leaves the line of communication open and encourages you to get in touch with a question or comment.
6. A Mission Statement that Aligns With Yours
Any company – from a content marketing agency to a local boutique – should have a clear and visible mission statement and vision for their company.
If your values and beliefs line up with what the agency stands for, you can ensure it will be a good fit for your content. The beliefs that a company holds comes out in all they do, and that includes content. If your beliefs do not align with the agency’s you’re working with, it may come through in the content they create for you.
You should also make sure they put their efforts where their heart is – if one of their major values is contributing to the community, see what they are doing to turn that value into real results.
A shared and honest understanding of what their big picture is will help you in the long run.
7. A Local Agency
If you’re able, finding a local content marketing agency can be a huge help. Especially if your content is geared towards a certain location, finding an agency that’s local can give you valuable insights on your target audience. An established content marketing agency may even have connections within the community that can help you reach even further.
Transparency relates to almost everything on this list. If they’re not honest about deadlines, avoiding certain questions or are not responsive to constructive criticism, it can be a huge red flag.
You should also always be in the know, from coming up with due dates to getting the final project. If there’s even a small problem or bump in the road, you should be kept in the loop and know what happened and what they’re doing to get back on track.
Transparency within content marketing is especially important. It can help you know what they’re doing to reach your target audience and expand your reach with content creation.
If these traits of an effective content marketing agency resonate with you, consider working with PivotPath. We can help you create Real, Recognizable and Relatable content to connect with clients and expand your businesses. Check out our content services here.
Alison Roller is a recent graduate of West Chester University of Pennsylvania where she earned a B.A. in English with a minor in journalism. When she’s not writing, she can be found wherever her cats are. Check out her LinkedIn profile here to connect.