Searching for a new digital agency is a lot like searching for a mate - you spend a lot of time seeing other people (the request for proposal process), you eventually narrow it down to a handful of prospects (the short list), and eventually you think you've found "the one" (the winning agency). After much wooing and negotiation, you agree to move in together (onboarding), and the real "getting to know each other" officially begins (the client-agency "relationship").
The first couple of months are usually pretty blissful - both parties are filled with lots of hope and positivity about the exciting adventures (programs/tactics) to come. But then you inevitably find out things that you didn't know before, that you may not like. Things get a bit bumpy; you start to become disenfranchised with your partner. Then gradually everything starts to unravel - all of a sudden a year has gone by and you're threatening to break up if they (your agency) don't get their act together!
It doesn't have to be this way! There is a way to maintain that honeymoon period indefinitely. And it starts with choosing the right partner in the first place. It's a huge investment to onboard a new agency, so you want to make sure that the agency you choose is going to work out in the long term.
Let's explore the top three considerations when choosing a partner:
Consideration No. 1: Make sure the agency's skills closely align to your needs.
Consideration No. 2: Make sure the agency has the proven ability to deliver.
Consideration No. 3: Make sure the agency can "play well with others."
Of course, there are many other factors to take into consideration when choosing a new digital agency partner, but avoiding the pitfalls above should increase your chances of a long and successful union. Happy hunting!
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Julie is a member of the senior strategy team at Klick Health, focused on online media and digital. Julie initially established and led the media practice at Klick for several years, relinquishing leadership to expand beyond media into additional digital tactics. She brings a wealth of experience in search marketing, digital media, and all facets of digital strategy to bear, helping Klick's clients develop innovative digital solutions. As her role has evolved, so have her contributions to ClickZ, which she has been writing for since 2007.
December 12, 2013
1:00pm ET / 10:00am PT