How To Choose a Digital Advertising Agency?
We have seen many agencies come and go. Unable to resist the allure of the latest bright shiny thing in digital. Since 2011, Intentional have focussed on doing one thing well; paid digital advertising. Here are 7 things to consider when you Choose a Digital Advertising Agency
Certified Specialist (#OneThingWell)
If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you’ve hired an amateur
– Red Adair
In an unregulated industry, certifications are vital. We take our Google Premier Partner and Facebook Marketing PRO status very seriously. And advise our clients to look for partners who hold these badges. There are many self-assessed methods to run advertising campaigns. The only way to ensure you adhere to best practices is working directly with Google & Facebook.
Since 2011 we have said ‘no’ to a lot of work, so we can protect our ‘yes’ to doing One Thing Well – driving your paid advertising forward. Further, since all we do all day every day is work on Paid Advertising, we can quickly pick up on patterns across industries and apply learnings to your account – you get the benefit of highly specialised, accelerated wisdom, gleaned cross-account, cross-industry. If our advertising doesn’t work – we don’t eat.
Retention of Clients / Long Term View
There’s only one thing more painful than learning from experience: not learning from experience
– Archibald MacLeish
At Intentional the average client stays over 3 years. A fact we are really proud of. Over 50% of our clients have been with us for over 5 years. It can be easy to get short term wins when taking over an ad account, what is supremely difficult is maintaining and improving this result consistently year after year.
Over the years, we’ve seen almost every digital mistake under the sun – some which we inherited, others we have caused and paid for. Not only have we learned (and changed) each time *and* kept our clients through such difficulties, but our relationships have grown stronger as a result.
For example, in the last 12 months for just one of our clients, we handled almost 5,000 individual digital assets flighted over multiple channels – each with different campaign criteria. With so many assets, it’s not a matter of ‘if’ a mistake will be made – but ‘how’. Over the years, we’ve honed our asset workflows to cope with such demands and we continue to learn and improve – whether that’s for internal agency checklists or client side playbooks. What’s important is how we work with our clients to resolve errors so they don’t become repeated mistakes. This particular client had been with us for over 5 years.
We’re happy to provide a reference to any Intentional client to hear about their real life experience working with us or you can view live Case Studies.
If you have not been trustworthy with another’s property, who will give you property of your own?
Every agency will claim they are transparent, but there is a really simple way to tell. Who owns the keys to your Advertising Accounts? At Intentional, we provide transparency you can touch, giving you the keys to your Ad Accounts. It shocks us how many clients do not own this data. In an age of AI x Machine Learning, it’s criminal not to.
We see ourselves as stewards of not just your advertising budget, but of your Brand and all associated assets. Intentional doesn’t own your advertising accounts – you do. We merely look after them on behalf of you during the period you engage us. At all times you own the keys to all of your advertising accounts. At any point, you can login to (or at worst even disconnect us from) your accounts. We don’t buy into the accepted industry practise of ‘renting’ accounts to clients then using the contractual threat of locking you out of your account as an incentive for you to not to leave – we use something else as our incentive: trust.
100% Fee For Service
With great power comes great responsibility
– Ben Parker
Intentional only make money from the management fee invoiced to clients each month. It’s the biggest reason most agencies will not provide access to your ad accounts. They use black box tools to add margin to your monthly advertising spend. This is a particular issue when using Programmatic advertising
Intentional are an independent, 100% Fee-For-Service agency. This has two direct benefits:
- Your Media Budget buys your Media and hides nothing. We don’t hide extra management profit inside your Media Fees nor do we accept commissions or rebates from any source, nor do we add any margins to your Media Spends nor do we operate Trading Desks. Where rebates or commissions are offered by publishers, we alert you and arrange to have those credited to your media buy.
- Unbiased Recommendations. Since we are an independent, Channel Agnostic agency that does not receive commissions, we have no obligation to spend on any one particular Channel over another nor do we have obligations towards ‘Group Companies’ to give preferential treatment. Our only obligation is to ensure the best results for your Brand.
Hire an Advertising Agency
If nobody notices your ad, everything else is academic
– Bill Bernbach
Funny that we have to say this, but in almost 8 years, going to multiple PPC conferences, workshops and marketing summits, there is almost no talk about the art of advertising. There is discussion about settings, algorithms and optimisation – but virtually nothing about copywriting, persuasion and human psychology.
Here at Intentional we use Digital Platforms, but we are in the advertising, not engineering business. We are here to ultimately reach and inspire people. We have to know the technology and algorithms intimately, but that’s the necessary foundation (not the solution) to create great advertising.
A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle. Together they both now produce more light
– James Keller
Finally, for all the advancement that the internet brings the world, it is unfortunate that along with the good, also comes the bad. In our small way, we’re looking to Redeem Digital by directing 1% of all profit towards International Justice Mission. (IJM)
IJM who operate in the Asia Pacific region have been instrumental in both freeing slaves trapped in Sex Trafficking and also in causing systematic change to enable laws to be enforced. Unfortunately, a significant portion of the demand side comes from Australia – so our neighbours are paying the price to fix the problems we are causing.