Ran Mullins By Ran Mullins • January 9, 2018

Seven Things to Look for in B2B Inbound Marketing Retainers

checklist_leadThere are plenty of reasons to power up your inbound marketing efforts. According to the 2017 State of Inbound Report, inbound marketers are more satisfied with their approach than outbound marketers. In fact, 68 percent indicated that their inbound marketing strategy was effective.

There are many different facets to your inbound marketing strategy and execution. Finding the right inbound marketing retainer means a few things. The best company works as an extension of your organization — it's like having the top-of-the-line digital marketing experts on staff without the payroll expense.

Your current staff can fortify their efforts with a well rounded team. An extra advantage of this is that your new partner will be able to help you amplify results, while freeing your in-house staff to concentrate on other important aspects of your work. It's an exciting time for your company, right on the precipice of growth.

Of course, the success of your partnership depends on finding the inbound marketing retainer that fits your organization. Here are some tips to help you find the best agency to suit your individual needs.

Top Seven Qualities to Look for in B2B Inbound Marketing Retainers

  1. Do they fit your company culture? When you hire a new employee, their credentials and experience are only part of the process. You also want to make sure that their personality fits in with your company culture. Your inbound marketing agency serves as an extension of your company. Before making a final decision, you want to make sure their company culture fits with yours. Meet the staff who will be working directly with your company and assess whether it's a good fit.
  2. Do they have experience in your industry? There are many inbound marketing retainers who specialize in digital marketing but work across industries. There are other agencies that specialize in a few, niche fields. Specializing in that way means that the agency understands the intricacies of your industry and how to reach your target audience. You don't necessarily need to find an agency that only works in your industry. But they should at least have worked with clients who have comparable business models.
  3. What is their process for assessing your current marketing protocols? Your marketing agency isn't just writing content or designing your website. Those might be some aspects of their services, but what you really need is an agency who understands where you are now. Without understanding your current and past marketing strategy, they won't be able to set benchmarks for growth or create a forward moving plan of action. When you're looking at possible partners, ask questions about how they assess your business. What information do they need from you and how thorough are they?
  4. Are they strategic partners? How do they work in helping you create an inbound strategy to yield results? You want a strategic partner. You might be in the market for an agency that just handles certain aspects of your marketing, and that's great. But an agency that offers full assessment of current and future strategy will mean that every part of their service is clearly thought out to help you attain set goals.
  5. What services do they offer? A full service agency will offer all aspects of your inbound marketing reach. You want to really pay attention to the services they offer and how they align with what your business needs.
  6. How do they communicate with sales? Does their strategy seek to deliver qualified leads? The real goal of marketing is to deliver conversion. You want an agency that understands that the marketing efforts need to align with your sales team's objective. This means mapping out precise customer personas and qualifying those leads through the best metrics before they reach the sales end of your funnel.
  7. What is the schedule for deliverables and how do they handle reporting? Your agency should deliver concise analytics reporting so that you can see your tangible results. Make sure that the agency you retain documents your journey in a way that you can understand and use to steer your progress.

Finding the right B2B inbound marketing retainer can take time and diligence. But that ideal partnership will be well worth the effort. A great agency alleviates the workload from your own staff while offering expanded growth.  Rbookend2.jpg