There are a few things you should consider before hiring an international digital marketing agency to help expand your business globally. All international digital marketing agencies are not created equal. What one may consider important when expanding their business internationally may be of minor importance to the digital marketing agency that want you to retain their services. A list of questions and a well-researched plan to approach several different agencies will allow you to discover for yourself which one is right for you is the best approach.
If you have made it this far you may find the idea of hiring an international digital marketing agency important but you may not have the time to do the research so we have done it for you and are going to provide you with a list of questions that should satisfy you when interviewing various international digital marketing agencies (let´s just call them IDMA´s).
An IDMA should understand your business, how you are currently generating prospects and new customers, what landing pages are working for you, and which ones can be improved. The purpose of digital marketing on an international scale is to grow, grow, grow. You are not doing this to try it out. If you have decided to invest your time into selecting an IDMA you need to be prepared to go all the way. No holds barred. As a result, you have to ensure that the international Digital Marketing Agency feels the same way about your products and services as you and they are willing to go all the way right alongside you.
Get all of the boring and obvious questions out of the way first. You are not asking any of these questions because you feel that you really need to know the answers to these boilerplate questions that have probably already been answered on the digital marketing agencies website. You are asking these questions to get a feel for the people answering the questions and how they answer the questions.
You want to know what kind of impression they make when they answer questions that they have been asked a million times before so you can see if they are still excited about what they do. You want to know that they are enthusiastic about their job even when they have to run through the same old questions with another prospective client (that’s you). If they can get through the questions with enthusiasm and fun you can bet that they will approach your international marketing plan with the same enthusiasm. And that’s what you want. So here they are. The first set of questions.
How long have you been in business?
Have you ever helped a business owner from my industry expand internationally?
If so what country or countries did you help them expand into?
What were the results? (The actual results. Ask for hard data)
Did you have to take a multi-lingual approach when you helped them expand their products into the new country or countries?
How many people do you have on your team?
Will a team of people be helping my company grow if I retain your services or will I just have a single account representative that will be handling my account?
This is the boarding but important part of hiring an international digital marketing agency. The information you will receive at this stage will prepare you for the second set of questions that you will be asking. The second set of questions are questions that you will design and come up with on your own based on the answers you received in round one. Based on everything you hear and see in round on will peak your curiosity about certain aspects of how they plan on doing business with you from a cultural perspective. You also will want to know how they can get you from Point A to Point B, and over what type of time frame.
The second part of the process comes from your own intuition, experience in business, and if this is your first time working with an international agency you will see patterns in the responses they give in round one if you are interviewing multiple firms. Go to town and don’t be afraid to shake things up to see how different agencies respond to unorthodox questions. If they have a creative response with you they will probably have a creative response to issues that arise with you international marketing campaign.
After you complete the process of interviewing several different agencies go with the one you feel comfortable with and retain their services. If you have a product that has been successful domestically they should be able to catapult you onto the global stage. We know we can.
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