I think we can all agree that all agencies are not created equal. There are agencies all over the world, in all sorts of markets, that are both excellent and embarrassingly bad. So what makes a business owner, marketing manager, or web team pick which agency is the best fit for them?
Well… if we were to poll the majority of small businesses, we might find that most companies elect the agency that has the lowest price and the highest recognition. You’d think that sounds pretty reasonable, and you’d be right! Any important member of a company understands that they always need to get the highest quality product for the lowest total cost… but, is that really all there is to making a decision as important as creating a new website, re-branding a company, or even creating branding for the very first time?
The answer is a resounding… NO!
When contemplating investing hard-earned money and valuable hours to getting important work done, think twice about just working with the first convenient option you hear about. There is so much more to design, development and marketing than just a transaction based on standard business practice.
So what is it then? How can you avoid the easy-to-make mistakes and really get the best value and product at the end of the day?
GO LOCAL. Yes, I mean local – local.
Think about it. No other agencies have a better opportunity to make an amazing product with the most effective strategy, Here’s why:
No doubt, most if not all businesses have run into some sort of communication problems whether it be internal or external. Nobody needs any more of that crap. Working with freelancers or agencies is already a task in itself, why make communication and interaction a burden? Working local affords a huge array of benefits in communication, organization, and accountability.
Looking to get a project done with a large scope? Complex components? Maybe even confusing strategies? Nothing is better than face-to-face interaction at a location you are already comfortable in. Any good local agency worth their weight LOVES meeting with clients in person to establish a relationship of trust, accountability, and understanding. Of course, you may find yourself emailing and calling your agency, but when you need to express your concerns, voice your strategy or just confirm your working with real life people, a meeting in person can accomplish far more than any email could.
We’ve found that many clients and businesses already have thorough plans and strategies. They just have a difficult time putting these plans into words relevant to the actual project. Good local agencies know this, expect this, and allocate time specifically to meet in person with their clients.
You are an expert in your field. You’ve spent years learning your craft, honing your business and developing your plans for the future. So, why should you assume any agency will come on board on the same page as you and your team? You shouldn’t!
You’ll be hard-pressed to find an agency, regardless of their proximity, that will know as much as you do about your niche or market. The key here is to work with an agency who can understand where you work, where you live and why you do it. Local agencies have a huge advantage over other agencies by starting off with far more context.
These local agencies walk the same streets as you, visit the same places, and in many cases market to the same audiences! Use this to your advantage and leverage commonalities any chance you get! When you find an agency that understands you and your goals, you’ve started a beautiful relationship that should last for years to come.
In today’s age, any digitally accessible company can choose to work and sell in the global market, targeting the “big fish”, avoiding the “small guys” that they think are a waste of time. Agencies that work local by choice actively fight this mind-set. The best and normally most effective agencies work with clients that they believe in, that they want to help succeed. If you find a local team who is not only willing to work with you, but aligns their mission to help businesses just like yours grow – you’ve found something worth investing in.
Working with an agency should be more like an extension of your team, rather than hiring some company to do something you’d rather not. Find an agency who was born to help businesses and people just like you.
So, does this mean you should jump straight into contract with the first local agency you come across? Of course not. Do your research, meet in person, take some time to learn about agency prospects. The goal is to find a partner who is willing, able, and prepared to work with you on the level that you need.
Many businesses might not have an agency close enough to be considered “Local” – that is not terribly uncommon. But, that does not change any of the core values listed above. Locality can immediately help reduce many of the headaches that come along with hiring agencies, but it is not the only factor. Find an agency who you can trust.
If you are having trouble finding an agency who you can work with you as team, let us know. We’d love to open up the line of communication, discuss your needs, and help you achieve your goals.