Top 7 Things to Expect From a Search Marketing Agency

Search is evolving and you need to improve your Search Engine Marketing programs to keep up with competition and demand. Here are seven points that you should analyze about your SEM agency to be sure they can properly address your needs. Also, remember to always look beyond the sales pitch as many agencies have polished the sales pitch to reflect what you want to hear as opposed to what they truly offer.

1. Professional and speedy customer service.

Real-time communication is here. Make use of it and make your customers part of the experience.

2. Knowledge of the client’s target market.

The client expects you to be knowledgeable in the market vertical they compete. If you are not an expert then talk to the client more often.

3. Being pro-active and flexible in your strategy.

Don’t wait for the client to tell you that a keyword is flying off the handle and spending too much. Monitor the performance and come to me with ideas and data. I care more if you tell me whether we are reaching and surpassing our business objectives.

4. API connectivity.

There is just no way around it. I believe there is not business case that can support not having Google Adwords API connectivity for your app, is there?

5. Thought leadership.

Clients are hiring your agency  to teach them and educate and to have interesting conversations on how to use the channel more efficiently. Yes, I do realize that a lot of times [the client] seem rather obsessive about minute things but the reason is that they are trying to learn and most of the time this is all new to them. The agency needs to lead the way and show the opportunity ahead.

In some cases, your client might be years behind the market leaders in terms of knowledge and experience, but if you apply resources, hard work and a well thought out strategy, your clients should be able to catch up pretty quickly to the market leaders.

6. Global presence.

An increasingly important point is to have true global knowledge and presence. Large companies are going to demand that you have a presence wherever they are. If your company is not lean and flexible enough to adapt to these demands quickly, you might see your client target pool shrinking.

7. Be creative.

If you want your company to be a great company, allow your people to be creative, to think out of the box and to stay ahead of the market so that you can beat competitors. Search Engine Marketing is a data-driven field and encouraging and practicing creativity can be challenging. However, you have the blessing of data which allows you to test your creativity and realize whether you are right or wrong very quickly.

Although data is comforting, you need to make sure you are looking at the right data. You need to play by the rules and then learn how to break them. That’s the beauty of SEM.  It not only it levels the playing field, but if you apply a disciplined approach to innovation, a boost in campaign performance will follow.

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