Questions To Ask Your Marketing Company After Seeing No Results

Hired a marketing company and have not seen results? You're not alone. Here's questions you to ask your marketing company to see if you need to pull the plug.

Questions To Ask Your Marketing Company After Seeing No Results

Have you ever hired a marketing agency and saw no results or progress after several months? Are you wondering whether you need to pull the plug or keep them around for a little longer? You are in the same boat as many other business owners out there. Unfortunately there are thousands of marketing agencies out there who promise the mountain but deliver a pebble.

If you have been put in this position, we have put together some questions you can ask your marketing agency, to see if they are on the right track, or need to be let go.

How are you measuring our success?

During your initial conversation or discovery session, you should have gotten the question, "What does success mean to you?" From there the agency should try and explore deeper to find either a monetary, time, presence, or traffic value to set as a benchmark for a goal. This is vital for any marketing strategy. If you and the agency see your success differently, then there is a huge problem.

If your marketing agency does not have KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) in place, or does not have a platform for tracking "success," then you are most likely wasting your time and money.

What Strategies Have You Tried & Can You Explain How They Have Been Successful?

This seems like the exact same question as the first one, but it is very different. Now that you have found out how your marketing agency is measuring your success, it is time to find out what strategies they used and why they are not working.

Before you go all gung ho on them with "whatever strategy you are using, is not working." Find out why they think it is working. More knowledge is better than less, so take your time to find out what strategy they have used and why they think it's working. If they don't have an answer or are reluctant to disclose the information, it's probably time to pull the plug. If a strategy does not seem to work, the first thing they should do is reach out, and let you know that it is not working and they need to change direction. Not every approach will work, which is why you change strategies when necessary.

Can you show us how our blog posts are ranking?

Blogging can be a great way to gain traffic to your website through quality content, but if your blog posts are too frequent, or compiled of general information that can be found in a vast amount of places, your blogs could be more of a waste of time and resources. Instead your marketing agency should be seeking posts with quality content and heavily optimized for on page and technical SEO. If they are posting too frequently they probably do not have time to focus on the important parts of blog posts. Ask for analytics on how the keywords and traffic is doing from the blog, as well as any google ad campaign metrics.

How many ads are we running (if any)? And how much are we spending on ads alone?

Depending on your type of advertising you will probably need to spend at least $1500 in ad spend alone, not including the cost to manage and create content. If you are spending less than that, you are most likely wasting money and not getting the right testing for a proper and effective ad. Ideally you want to hire an ad agency separately to manage your advertising accounts, as that is a business of its own and takes a lot of knowledge and time. Companies who offer everything could be a red flag.

What ads are we running? Can we see them?

Facebook transparency allows you to see you and your competitors ads that are running directly from your page. You can check on them yourselves. But if you do not have time, ask your agency to see them and make sure they are following your branding guidelines and accurately portraying the message you want. If it is not, ask them to explain their strategy for a better understanding.

If they are putting out generic ads with little research, you will be wasting money on an ineffective ad. There is a long process of A/B testing, trial and error to find an ad set that works best for your company. You should see more than one at a time in most cases to be most effective.

Where are your graphics coming from?

This is a bigger concern than people realize. There are companies like Pixsy that scour the internet to find copy written content so they can sue. If your marketing agency is using images or graphics that are not licensed, you can and probably will have a copyright infringement letter on your desk at some point. Even worse, since you gave the marketing agency permission to run your site and accounts, your business is held liable, not theirs.

Check to make sure they are using a credible stock design store like Adobe Stock, or a paid version of FreePik. Even better if they are designing everything from scratch, although this does take a lot of time. If you are on retainer, the marketing agency will use a blend of both to save you and them time and money.

If you find out they are using copyrighted content. Make sure to immediately remove all images or graphics from your website, print collateral, or social media platforms. You may also want to reconsider working with that agency as this is Design 101.

How many hours are going into our project?

If you are on retainer you can skip this question as you agreed to set hours prior to starting.

If you are on a flat fee basis, this will help you understand their process and whether the appropriate time is being taken to care for your brand. If you are paying for social media management, blogs, SEO, and advertising. That will easily take 40 hours plus per week to work on your project. Imagine you hire an in-house employee, to do everything for you in place of the agency. How much time would they take? You can loosely estimate how many hours you think it would take based on your intuition. A good agency will keep track of those hours so when a report is sent out you can see where most of the time spent is going.

Note: Not all hours will be used on a retainer. If there are 5 hours left unused because the marketing agency is effective, this does not mean you get reimbursed. You can however average the hours left over after a 6 month period to renegotiate how many hours you need for the future.

What does my workflow look like on my CRM or email marketing platform?

If your marketing agency is creating blogs, landing pages, social media campaigns, or any other type of click funnel, there needs to be a solid workflow for those incoming leads in place. Ask your agency what that workflow looks like, how leads are captured, and navigation in a world of information. Every agency should have a solid plan past just capturing a lead and putting it into a database.

When you should let your agency go.

If your agency holds back from answering any of these questions, it may be time to look elsewhere for marketing services. If all the questions are answered, but you are unsure about the process, there is nothing wrong with digging a little deeper or asking for clarity on the topic. A marketing agency's goal is to bring consumers to your business, but also create a solid relationship between you and them. Most agencies should want to help you better understand and be satisfied with their process.