🚩 5 Red Flags When Hiring an Agency 🚩

CEO & Co-Founder, Vendry

Knowing how to hire a digital marketing agency that will bring positive results and a pleasant experience in the working partnership will save a business months of wasted time, energy, and budget. This article will share some of the most common obstacles faced when hiring an agency.

Red Flag 1 - Agencies That Handle All Services

It is nearly impossible for an agency to specialize in every service. The idea of centralized strategy and communication can seem appealing, but ask how the agency is organized and who your point of contact will be. If they don't have a pod structure with a marketing or growth strategist as the lead, there's a low chance your strategies across channels will be aligned.

Red Flag 2 - Project Managers As Your Point of Contact

Don't get me wrong, project managers are vital to a team's success, but if your point of contact does not have experience in the service you're paying for, meetings will be like playing a game of telephone. If performance is bad and you want to understand what's happening, you don't want to hear, "That's a good question. After this call, I will ask the team and get back to you."

Red Flag 3 - Guaranteed Results

If an agency promises you a certain ROA, RUN! Especially if they haven't run an audit on your account and don't clearly understand your P&L. Every business, ad account, and audience is different. A strategy that works for one business may not work for another, so it's hard to promise replicated results.

Red Flag 4 - Initial Long-term Contracts

Yes, there are instances like enterprise deals or services like coaching programs, SEO, or CRO where initial time-bound contracts make sense. But, agencies requiring you to sign a 6-12 month contract from day one can be a big red flag. The first 2-3 months is an excellent time for the agency and the client to see if it's a long-term partnership. Only once you've gone for a test drive should you consider doing a 3, 6, or 12-month contract at a reduced rate.

Red Flag 5 - Non-disparagement Clauses

What is a non-disparagement clause?The clause states that you won't say anything negative about the agency or its products, services, or leaders—in any form of communication.Imagine starting with a new agency, thinking you'll get the amazing results they promised, only to end up stuck in a long-term contract with poor communication and performance. And when you're finally free from the contract, you can't share your experience with anyone.