How to Find and Hire the Best Agency for your Business

In my opinion, there are lots of good ad agencies in the Phoenix market. I would go on to say that you can pretty much find whatever you are looking for in regard to size, capability, and cost when it comes to your marketing needs. I think perhaps the biggest challenge is finding an ad agency in Phoenix that is a perfect match for you.

WHAT SHOULD I LOOK FOR IN AN AD AGENCY?

There is no one-word answer to this question. If I was on the client side, I would want an agency with experience. I do not need them to have experience in a certain field, but I need them to be experienced in the types of executions that my brand needs to be successful.

Let’s talk about that … agencies that deal in verticals offer both advantages and disadvantages. An agency that specializes in one particular category knows the industry vernacular and may be more aware of consumer trends that affect companies in that space. Conversely, what we typically see when we get a client who has worked with an agency that “specializes” in a certain industry is redundant creative, marginal account servicing, and a costly retainer. In general, I’m not a fan of agencies that operate strictly in one vertical.

If you’re searching for an ad agency, look for experience in execution before you settle for one that works exclusively in your category.

WHAT’S BETTER A SMALL AGENCY OR A BIG ONE?

Well … that depends. And no, not on the size of your company or even the size of your need. You could argue that the best answer to your question might be in the complexity of your need.

Allow me to explain.

Larger agencies consist of teams with specific responsibilities. Account servicing, graphic design, and digital are examples of departments that exist in a larger agency. These teams are assigned accounts that they devise and execute marketing plans for.

Agencies like LaneTerralever, Lavidge, OH Partners, and Riester have both the resources and talent to handle numerous large accounts. Their processes are highly refined. I find them to be very gifted at what they do. I’m equally enamored with the people that work at these agencies. Typically, they are good at what they do and cool as F as well (especially their leadership). If your need was hyper-complex, agencies of this magnitude are well-suited to steward your company to marketing success.

I will go on to say that there are plenty of what I would characterize as medium sized agencies like Colling Media, Anderson Advertising, Ideas Collide, and the James Agency. There are great people working in these shops. These agencies offer the best of both worlds when it comes to quality execution and the ability to tackle complex executions.

As a smaller sized ad agency, I can tell you with zero hesitation that we are equally talented, extraordinary in our own right and arguably cool as F as well. We also have departments similar to larger agencies. With smaller agencies, account servicing tends to overlap meaning that my digital manager could also be actively involved in the look of your collateral assets. For ReThinc, this is by design. We feel that it’s advantageous for us and ultimately for our clients.

In many ways, we as a company mirror what a team at a larger agency might look like. This affords a smaller agency the ability to be a little more intimate in addressing their clients’ needs. It also allows us to be more flexible when a client has a unique need or perhaps even a limitation when it comes to their marketing budget.

In my opinion, they are all great options for anyone seeking marketing assistance. If I was a big company with a potentially complex need, my solution may lie with a small, medium, or large agency.

HOW DO I HIRE AN AD AGENCY IN PHOENIX?

If I was a company exploring my options, I would first do what many consumers do when making a significant purchase. I would go online and do my homework. I would want to see and know who I’m working with, what their qualifications are, and what level of experience they have. I would then look for a philosophical match. Does their blog resonate with me? Then I would assess their body of work … is it appealing to me? Does this company specialize in the executions that my company needs? Lastly and not leastly (made up word alert) … I would check to see what their current and former clients say about them. Think about it, you wouldn’t hire an employee without checking references … why would you not do that when hiring an ad agency?

TAKE YOUR TIME

Once you’ve narrowed down your field of candidates, set up meetings with a few agencies. I think three is a good number myself. I would meet with them at their office so you can see their work environment, meet some of the staff, and get a feel for their culture. I don’t think agencies are overtly salesy (this has to be a word by now) so it should be a relatively painless process.

Often times, you may not be certain of what exactly needs to be done to put your company on a path to marketing success. That’s 100% OK. As part of your interview/discovery process, broach that hurdle with the prospective agency. A good agency should be able to give you some idea of what they think are good steps to achieve your marketing goals.

SIGN HERE PLEASE

Hiring the right ad agency can make all the difference in having the experience you want as well as the results you seek. At ReThinc, we do most of our work under mutually non-binding or short-term contracts. That way, you as the client won’t feel trapped while we as your agency never take your business for granted. Before you sign anything, I would vet that out. I would also make certain that you retain everything that the agency produces as well as all passwords, hosting information, etc.

If you’re in the market for an ad agency and need help finding the one that’s just the right fit for your brand, feel free to send me a note using one of many new contact forms on our fancy new website or email me directly at ed.olsen@rethincadvertising.com.