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Should you break up with your digital marketing agency?

We recently stopped working with one of our large multi-national customers. It was our decision as an agency to do this. The break-up was smooth and we all parted as friends. There were a number of reasons for doing this. The mental health of our staff, structural and staff changes inside the client business, and new and unrealistic growth expectations (It gives our staff no satisfaction to work on accounts when they aren’t making a difference, or are unable to meet the client’s targets, especially when they might be unrealistic.)

Another agency has taken over the accounts and we’ve helped them through the transition. They’ve taken on a mammoth task and it got me to thinking about how sometimes it’s the clients that jump ship because they think a new agency is going to give them better returns, and massively increase their revenue.

Don’t get me wrong. There are valid reasons for moving agencies. Sometimes you need fresh eyes on the account, a change of creativity, new skills the agency doesn’t have. But if you’re moving because you think you can get better revenue growth elsewhere be careful about what promises are being made.

The dotted line is under Happy Monday Google Ads Management, the solid line is the new agency, and equates to around $20K a month in sales. While you need to give them time to settle into the new account, be mindful that changing agencies does not always mean better growth, sometimes it’s the opposite.

Digital Marketing is not always about “exponential double digit growth”, sometimes it’s about maintaining a level of sales or leads, in ever increasing competitive markets.

If you have noticed a drop in sales and leads, it may very well be time to hire a new agency, however, you need to look at your overall market. Has there been a change in consumer behaviour? Have new competitors entered the market? Is there an overall decline in sales across your entire market?    Remember don’t shoot the messenger if there are external factors having a significant impact on results.

Reasons to move agencies?

  • Poor performance
  • Poor communication
  • Poor project management
  • Lack of ownership of your PPC accounts
  • Lack of transparency of work being completed
  • Cultural misalignment
  • You aren’t receiving monthly reports or performance updates.

If you do want to move agencies

Transitions to a new agency can be tricky. Here are a few critical things to consider when going through the process of finding a new marketing agency.

Gain Ownership of your assets: Always remember, before exiting the existing agency, you should gain control of all assets, tools, materials, and content collateral. Some agencies won’t do this so make sure you check and terms and conditions or agreements you have in place.

Know your “why”:  It’s important to reflect on and fully understand the “why” behind your decision to go in a new direction. What ultimately made you end your last relationship and what are you looking for in a new relationship? This will help you to set clear and realistic expectations for your future marketing agency. You need to have clarity on what those expectations really are.

Give them time:  When you make the shift to a new agency, keep in mind that they are new to your organisation. They will need some time to become familiar with your products or services. They will need to familiarise themselves with historical performance data and metrics and to develop a strategy. As much as we all wish it could be, this doesn’t happen overnight.

If you would like to talk to us about your digital marketing requirements and how we might be able to help then please feel free to reach out.