Using the services of an advertising agency is a crucial step in the growth of any company. But many fledgling businesses make fundamental mistakes during the process of hiring an agency, which could damage their reputation and harm future marketing campaigns. Avoid these mistakes and you should find an advertising agency that complements your business and arrives at better advertising solutions.

Inadequate Research
Many businesses looking for marketing support fail to look into the range of services each advertising agency offers. Which agencies have experience in your sector of the market? Who are their current clients? Consider which agency you would be happiest working with. And more importantly, which one will best represent you?

Not Creating a Clear, Strategic Brief
Clearly communicating your long-term marketing ambitions will help you secure the right advertising agency. Be confident. Define how you wish to work together. What can they expect from your team? How much are you willing to compromise? The best agencies will respect total honesty, as it gives them an immediate insight into the marketing aspirations of your company and the character of your team.

Being Too Busy to Fully Cooperate
During the initial review process of each advertising agency, make sure you’re available to talk by phone as much as possible, or at least via email. If you don’t communicate effectively in the early stages, it could harm your future partnership and undermine your marketing plans. No advertising agency will be able to give their best work to an uncommunicative client.

Not Providing a Budget Range
An advertising agency that receives your proposal with a clearly defined budget cap or range will be more equipped to offer you a realistic marketing program. Most advertising agencies will know how to successfully work to a budget to meet your objectives, but if they’re in the dark about your financial commitment, how can they be expected to find adequate solutions to your marketing needs?

Having a Vague Operational Strategy
Before sending proposals to any advertising agency, be clear about who will be working on which tasks with the agency. Do all the people on your team agree about your marketing goals? If not, make sure you iron out your differences before any advertising project begins. Having to deal with your internal conflicts and operational failings will annoy any advertising agency, and could permanently damage future relations.

Being Inflexible
It’s true that an agency may not know your business better than you do, but they do have the advantage of an objective standpoint. It’s therefore important to listen carefully to what an ad agency advises and be willing to change your marketing strategy from time to time. After all, they probably have years of marketing experience, and know the most effective advertising strategies. Having an inflexible marketing approach will only stifle progress.

Expecting Precisely Defined Fees in Advance
In the initial stages of reviewing each advertising agency, it’s tempting to want to know precise agency fees. But before you have awarded the job to an agency, you can’t really expect precisely defined fees for every aspect of an advertising project. After more detailed research of your marketing needs, they can be more accurate. In the initial stages, however, don’t be too distrustful of an agency that can’t define every single fee.

Not Meeting Face to Face
Once you have a short list of agencies to choose from, it’s always beneficial to set up meetings to discuss your requirements and assess the marketing potential of each agency. If you don’t meet face to face, how are you going to know if everyone will truly get along? You may even change your initial thoughts about one agency, which could lead to hiring another more suitable team.

Failing to Keep an Ad Agency Informed
If you decide not to hire a particular advertising agency, have the decency to let them know your decision. They’ve probably given you enough of their time to warrant your appreciation. Besides, you might need their services in the future. Failing to keep them up to date will only harm your reputation and could weaken future marketing initiatives.

Choosing the right advertising agency can take some time, but preparing properly can ensure you team up with the ad agency most suited to your company’s marketing needs. By avoiding these common mistakes, you’re more likely to enjoy a successful partnership that results in the best advertising solutions and helps your business flourish.