Marketing can be a complicated endeavor, which is why businesses of all sizes work with external agencies to fulfill their needs. The increase in expertise and experience can significantly benefit your brand.
But of course, outsourcing your marketing efforts is not as simple as handing over everything about your brand to someone and letting them go rogue. Instead, it's a strategic partnership that ensures success through close cooperation and a consistent message. To accomplish that goal, here are 4 steps that can help make your outsourcing efforts successful.
1) Know Your Audience
Above all, you should know as much as you can about the people your marketing will attempt to reach. Building an effective marketing strategy is only possible if you know the demographics and preferences of your audience, a fact that remains true whether you or an external agency will be in charge of your promotional efforts.
A marketing agency can help you conduct an in-depth audience analysis. But the more knowledge you can bring in terms of your intended and actual customers, the better. What is your geographic reach? What age ranges will most likely respond to your messages, and where do they spend their time? If you know the answer to these types of questions, the transition to outsourcing will be much smoother.
2) Define and Specify Your Brand
Similar to your audience, you should also have at least some idea of your current and intended brand identity. When your customers think about your products or services, what is their impression? Would you consider your offering reliable, exciting, necessary, or something else?
Working with a marketing agency can help you build a consistent brand that focuses on your products' benefits to your audience. But that brand needs to be at least partially based on the tangible features and benefits your brand can provide.
3) Collect Existing Efforts
Another helpful step for your marketing agency may be the types of efforts and materials you have used to promote your brand in the past. These may include anything from your current website to examples of emails, direct mail pieces, or brochures that you have used for marketing outreach.
Any comprehensive marketing campaign will either build on your existing brand, or re-build your brand to develop a new or adjusted identity. The success of either of these steps depends at least in part on knowing what your audience already knows about you, and how they perceive you based on previous outreach efforts.
4) Establish Collaboration Parameters
Finally, start thinking about the structures in which your marketing efforts will be outsourced. You probably won't simply hand off everything, set a budget, and allow free reign. Instead, you'll want regular opportunities to get in touch, communicate any changes or updates about your products and services, and receive success reports on current initiatives.
Setting these parameters early is key. For example, you may want to set up a weekly or bi-weekly call that allows both parties to check in and exchange information. The more open you are about your collaboration and communication needs, the more likely you will be to find a partner that can accommodate and embrace them.
Working with an external agency will help make your marketing efforts more strategic and successful. But that's only the case if the foundation for the collaboration is laid correctly, and if the agency has all the information they need to help you succeed.
Of course, your agency may be able to help you in some of the above steps. You may know your audience prior to the engagement, but work together on a more comprehensive audience analysis to optimize your marketing channels and message. Still, these four steps set the groundwork for success, ensuring that your outsourcing decision will help your business grow.
Our expertise and experience can significantly benefit your brand, give us a call or send us a note today at Small Dog Creative 661-702-1310!
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