lolajane, Staff Writer, October 7, 2009
An advertising agency web site should contain the vital elements of what that particular agency has to offer your business. You should be able to get a basic feel for what that agency has offered its clients in the past. More importantly though, you will be able to get a sense of what they will and will not provide for your business. Advertising agency web sites offer a glimpse, albeit a biased one, at how that company plans on ultimately increasing your sales. These views are usually biased because they are oftentimes created by that same agency. Advertising agencies have the same goal as any Internet business: making money. They will want to promote their company to the best of their ability in order to get the biggest and best clients. You should always approach agencies with a degree of caution because of this.
The best agency web sites will all offer a few essential points. They will, of course, outline what outcomes they intend on producing. These goals may include increased web traffic, more specialized targeted web traffic, or better advertising and product placement. Regardless of what the outcome, the ultimate goal is to increase the amount of revenue flowing in to your company. The agency should be able to quote what kind of increases they have created for other businesses.
This leads to the second point: past performance. Companies that have been helped by that particular agency in the past may be reported on the web site. Due to confidentiality issues, the agency may not be able to include the internet business’s name, but the agency should be able to at least describe the nature of the business that was helped. Clients with similar customers and services should be duly noted. Again, if this information is not provided on the site, you should be able to get the information from an interview with a member of the agency.
Another point that will be included on the agency’s web site is a list of services provided. The agency may provide for advertisements on popular search engines, increase the amount of key words on your site in order to rank it higher when people search for related subjects, or simply track the demographics of who is actually frequenting your site. All of these services should be listed on the agency’s web site so that potential clients can be better directed. Do not expect to find a lot of details regarding these services– agencies would lose business if they gave away all
of their secrets.
Web design is another typical service that will be included in an agency’s repertoire. The best web design agency for your needs will not only be designed to retain customers, but will also track demographics so that the people visiting your site will increasingly be the ones that are most likely to purchase your services. This can be accomplished through strategically placing advertisements on other sites through viral marketing. With hyperlinks placed on sites that members of your target customers already visit, you will be increasing the amount of quality traffic on your site. There are a few ways to go about doing this. Publications written by your company may promote your site. Blogs and forums are another key method. By constantly getting your name and company’s name out on different web sites and forums, you will increase name recognition for your company. This in turn will lead to customer curiosity and increase your web traffic. The more people who visit your site, the more you will sell. One other relatively new online tool is the Web 2.0 site such as Myspace, Facebook, and Linkedin. These social networking sites can put you in touch with individuals, who may be interested in your products, yet are unaware of your company’s services and products. It also allows current customers to keep updated with your company’s news.
Another way to target the demographics of your site is through a series of pointed questions. Questions that identify the location or the age of your visitors are simple yet effective. If you are looking for a younger demographic, you may want to design your site to be driven towards attracting the youth with informal content. Likewise, if you are trying to attract businessmen and women, a professional and formal look will be most effective. Again, a web design agency will be able to tailor your site to best fit your needs.
You might be able to find quotes for the particular services provided, but do not count on finding this key piece of information though. Most of the time, you will have to actually contact the agency for a price quote. Even then, this may not be an accurate appraisal of what you will actually be charged. Services such as pay per click advertising on popular search engines can be helpful but unpredictable. Still, the agency should be able to provide an estimate of the cost based on past clients’ results.
Specialized agencies can be the answer to your company’s needs. If your company has a specific niche market, these agencies should be able to serve you the best. Whether it be in advertising through specific channels or publishing intelligent articles that relate to your company, an agency that states it works in a specialized niche can be beneficial to your business since they know the intricacies of your clientele better than you may.
Most importantly though, an advertising agency should promote themselves as being completely objective. Their alternative viewpoint allows them to more completely identify the problems that your company has and then address them. Because ad agencies are objective, they may come up with solutions that individuals within your business have not thought of. This is perhaps the most important aspect that agencies provide. An outsider familiar with your industry may be able to point to trends within other companies that your business is not yet following. Keeping up with the competition is just one key area of focus that an agency can provide. You can find the best advertising agency for your business by looking through your local phone pages, searching the Internet or asking other business owners.