Best Online Marketing Agency in Maryland – What Works and What Doesn’t?

If you’re looking to invest in an online marketing agency in Maryland, then it’s important to do some research beforehand. There are a lot of companies offering services, but not all of them are created equal. As a potential client, it’s important to consider what matters most to you as a business. What are your goals? What results are you looking for? Once you’ve got those priorities in mind, then it’s easier to narrow down the field until you’ve got a small list of contenders. From there, you can compare prices and services before settling on a deal. 

The Biggest Differentiator Between Agencies

One of the first things you should consider is how the agency operates. Reputable companies will have clear guidelines about how projects move forward. If you’ve got a limited deadline and money is no object, then go for it – there’s no harm in trying something new. But if you’ve got a limited budget and you need to be mindful of every penny, then sticking with what you know is the better option. You don’t want to waste your money on a fly-by-night operation that doesn’t have the resources to deliver what they promise. In that case, it’s better to find an established agency that has a solid track record and the resources necessary to tackle your project. This way, you can be sure that what you’re getting is what you paid for. On the other side of the spectrum, some companies offer expensive packages that include every trick in the book. While there is absolutely value in this, you can also end up paying a lot more than you need to. It’s better to look for an agency that specializes in online marketing in Maryland and that’s equipped with the right tools to get the job done. Without those tools, it’s like trying to build a house without the proper blueprints – it doesn’t work and you’ll end up wasting your time and money. On the whole, look for the biggest differentiator between the available options and you’ll find the agency that is right for you. 

The Role of the Agency In A Marketing Plan

When you work with an agency, it’s important to remember that they will have a role in laying out your marketing plan. To begin with, they will help you establish objectives and priorities for your campaign. To give you an idea of what they are thinking, here are some of their suggestions: 

  • Reach (Pages/Audience): Looking to increase traffic to your website? Start with banner ads and email marketing. Next, determine which social platforms to use – Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are the big three. From there, you can branch into other networks like YouTube.
  • Conversions (Bounce Rate/Purchase): How many customers are dropping by your site but not staying long enough to make a purchase? This will determine the next step in your marketing plan – retargeting or nurturing leads with email marketing, remarketing, or both.
  • Cost-Per-Conversion (CPC) (Cost to Engage): Keep in mind that CPC is the cost per conversion- this is how much you’re spending on a single action (like filling out a form, liking a page, or clicking a link). It can be helpful for estimating the ROI (return on investment) of an ad campaign. When you reach a certain threshold of conversions, you can determine the next step in your plan – scaling up or down depending on the results of your pilot program.
  • Cost-Per-Acquisition (CPA) (Cost to Attract): Similar to CPC, but instead of focusing on conversions, this measures the cost per acquisition. This includes things like pay-per-click ads as well as lead generation platforms like digital marketing agencies. CPA can be helpful for estimating the ROI of a web ad campaign. When you reach a certain threshold of acquisitions, you can determine the next step in your plan – scaling up or down depending on the results of your pilot program.
  • Overall Cost: This is the sum of the costs associated with getting the project done (agency fees, hosting, email marketing, etc.). When you reach a certain threshold of expense, you can determine the next step in your plan – scaling up or down depending on the results of your pilot program.

With these numbers in mind, you’re ready to establish benchmarks for measuring the success of your campaign. If you want to dig deeper, you can use Google Analytics to track the results of your various online marketing efforts – ads, social media, and email marketing.

Key Areas To Look For In An Agency

When you’ve got a clear idea of what the agency’s role will be in your digital marketing plan, it’s easier to determine the key areas you should be looking for in an agency. Here are some of the things you should be on the lookout for: 

  • Marketing expertise: Every agency worth their salt will have at least one professional with specialized knowledge in digital marketing. This person should have a good understanding of what makes websites go ‘viral’ and be able to pass that knowledge on to you. Some marketing experts may specialize in SEO (search engine optimization), while others focus more on content marketing. Having a team of people with varied expertise is invaluable, as you’ll be able to cover all aspects of your digital marketing plan.
  • Creative: Coming up with effective ads and social media copy is a creative process – it’s not something that can be automated. The best agencies will have experienced creatives on staff that can bring fresh ideas to the table. If you’ve got a clear picture in mind of what you’re looking for, then the creative process should be relatively straightforward. If you’ve got a less-defined vision, then be sure to ask plenty of questions to ensure that everyone is on the same page.
  • Analytics: Analytics is an area where many agencies fall short, but it’s an incredibly important one. In order to measure the success of your various digital marketing efforts, you’ll need to have some sort of analytics platform in place. The best agencies will be able to give you clear direction on how to use analytics to its fullest potential – including which platforms you should be using and the type of data you should be collecting. If you’re looking to cut costs, then this is one place you can directly do so by reducing your dependence on unreliable sources of information.
  • Reporting: The best digital marketing agencies will be able to give you clear, actionable reports outlining the results of your various online marketing efforts. These reports should be easy to understand and allow you to directly jump into the action. If you’re not used to viewing detailed analytics reports, then be sure to ask questions to ensure that the information is presented in an accessible manner.
  • Pricing: When you’re in the process of deciding between competing agencies, be sure to compare their pricing structures. Some companies may offer discounted rates for commercial clients, so be sure to ask about those discounts before signing on the dotted line.

With these key areas in mind, you’re ready to work with an agency that can help you plan and execute a digital marketing strategy for your business. Your specific questions should guide the process of selecting an agency – remember to ask about commercial discounts, agency fees, and projected ROI before making a decision. In the end, not all fly-by-night operations are created equal and you should do your research before making a commitment. With a little bit of homework, you’ll be able to find an agency that meets your needs and has the resources necessary to complete the project on time and within your budget.