You just got a report back from your marketing agency. Everything looks great. Your website is getting more visitors this month and you’re generating more leads. You say “great job”, you sign their check and off they go.

Hold on a second…

Have you ever wondered if the results being presented to you were in direct correlation to the work being done by the agency?

Was the increase in website traffic because of their amazing seo or was it because of your internal marketing efforts? Your recent direct mailer, local media mentions, social media shares etc.

The situation where a client is producing the results independently of the agencies work is a dream situation for most agencies.

Rising and Sinking Tides of Marketing

We all know a “A rising tide lifts all boats” – John F Kennedy,

As great as this is…when the tide is rising…it does end up masking the actual work and results being done by the agency you’re paying good money for.

You have to remember that on the flip side…

“Only when the tide goes out do you discover who’s been swimming naked.” – Warren Buffett

Let’s not wait till the tide goes out to catch this because now It’s too late and your marketing agency has nothing to propel you back up when you most need it.

Properly Tracking is Key

The easiest way to stop this from happening is to make sure your marketing agency is tracking their work properly.

If the agency is not implementing proper tracking techniques then they could always find an excuse for bad months and take credit for the good months. To suffocate any excuses or undeserved credit from being taken, you must make sure from day one that you have an expectation that if they want credit for anything, it must be properly tracked.

Stop accepting their…

“Well you made more sales this month then you have in the past month”

“Your leads have increased by 25% over last month”

“Your phones have been ringing more this month then the prior”

“Your website visitors are up this month:”

“Your bounce rate is down and pages per session is up”

Etc.

Etc.

They will start to grasp for any metric they can to prove their worth.

“Pics or It Didn’t Happen”

By setting clear expectations from the beginning that what can’t be tracked and pointed back to them is not accepted then you set a precedent moving forward that they know they must abide by.

In my lead generation business, we would track every lead that came in and reported it in our online dashboard. If we charged a client for a lead then they could go into their dashboard and listen to the phone call, see what the caller ID was, the length of the call and many other metrics.

I understand that it’s not always this black and white in all the different types of marketing but it’s important that you set the bar high from the start.

Make sure reports are details and not broad stroke. With all the tracking tools out there these days, there is no reason they should be sending you broad brush reporting. The second you notice this, make sure to snuff it out immediately.

Final Wrap-up

So to wrap this up, just remember that good results in your marketing does not always mean good results from your marketing agency. Always ask for them to thoroughly track results and never be afraid to ask questions.

If you want a thorough audit of the work being done by your marketing agency then you can reach us at www.aosaudit.com

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