Your Ultimate Checklist Before Recruiting a Digital Marketing Partner

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As a business owner, you constantly strive to grow your online visibility and revenue. The decision to partner with a digital marketing agency can be one of the smartest things a business owner can do.  But when it comes to hiring a digital marketing agency, all businesses should have a careful vetting process. You would want to ensure you get the most qualified and reliable partner.

There are plenty of digital marketing agencies out there, claiming to help your business while using outdated or non-Google compliant methods. So it’s important to be selective. Your business is more likely to thrive when you rely on professional digital marketing services that have proven their worth over time.

Before you hire a digital marketing agency make sure you ask the right questions. This way you will set your business up for digital marketing success. Any serious digital marketing agency or strategist will have concrete answers to the following questions.

1. Are you specialised in any specific services?

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Digital marketing is multidisciplinary and includes a broad spectrum of techniques. The first question you should ask a potential digital marketing agency is what specific services they provide.

Some agencies or freelancers may have a specific area of expertise. Others will combine various techniques to provide a more comprehensive approach. Be aware of these different services and the ways they can benefit your business.

Search engine optimisation

A staple concept in the digital marketing sphere is search engine optimisation or SEO. SEO can make or break a business online. The end goal of SEO is to improve your website’s position in search engines. This is done by increasing the quality and quantity of your traffic as well as exposure to your brand. But SEO consists of multiple strategies, actions and best practices. Below are a few examples of different SEO services digital marketing agencies offer:

  • On-page SEO—Content services that improve total keywords and ranking positions
  • Link-building services—Offsite strategies that elevate overall site authority
  • Technical SEO—Strategies for improving metadata, page experience, and the technical performance of your website
  • Reputation management—Improving reputation signals on review platforms, social media websites, and Wikipedia pages
  • Local SEO—Strategies targeted towards helping your small business rank for location-based searches for specific regions

Social media

In addition to SEO, one of the most critical types of online marketing for your business is social media. Your social media pages such as Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn business pages should help drive traffic to your website. Social media marketing services is the key to online business visibility and success.

Top4 Marketing’s social media marketing is to help you reach, engage and build your business through social media. We will connect your business with people who are aligned with your brand, your purpose, your ‘why’. Our social media marketing services is the key to your online business visibility and success. Together we can inspire and build a highly engaged online community. One who will buy more often, refer more customers, and most importantly, is here to stay. Contact us and our web experts will be in touch!

Content marketing

This is another must-have in the digital marketing world. Why do so many websites have blogs? Because content marketing works! Not having a blog can mean you’re missing out on valuable traffic and potential business. Business blog content helps position you as an expert in what you do. Most online searches lead users to blog content. Search engines want to provide the best experience for searchers. When a user searches for the answer to a question, a search engine prefers to answer those questions. which are linked to well-crafted blogs that use a good SEO strategy.

Here at Top4 Marketing, we employ a highly scientific approach to develop high-quality content that builds your visibility and reputation. Rest assured that each content developed by our web experts are strategic, and data-driven to ensure they are worthy to rank for your target phrases. Contact us and our web experts will be in touch!

Web development

Digital marketing agencies also commonly offer website development services. Your digital marketing efforts should drive people back to your website, where they can find out more about your products and services – and eventually make a purchase. That’s why you need to ensure your website is easy to navigate and updated.

Top4 Marketing offers unique, award-winning and fully responsive website designs from the most talented designers in the industry. Our quotes are tailored to meet your individual needs and fit within your budget. Our results are sure to impress each and every visitor to your website. Contact us and our web experts will be in touch!

Key takeaway

What you need to keep in mind before deciding to work with a digital marketing agency is knowing your specific niche. Ask your potential digital marketing partner what they specialise in.

2. Do you have any experience with businesses or clients in my industry?

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Competing in a niche industry can be tedious and challenging. Make sure you ask your potential digital marketing partner if they have experience with past clients in the same industry as yours. Understanding search intent is essential to digital marketing success. So your digital marketing provider needs to have a nuanced understanding of your target audience, and the types of keyword searches they rely on to find products or services like yours.

Google also has specific ranking factors for different industries. A B2B brand is going to have to meet different criteria than a healthcare company to rank in the top spots. This means you’ll want your digital marketing partner to come up with a completely measured, research-based digital marketing strategy tailored to your specific industry. If your potential digital marketing partner has worked with other businesses like yours, you can rest assured that they can help you outrank competitors faster.

Deciding to enter into a working partnership is no small decision. When hiring a digital marketing agency, you need all the facts and information available to decide if that organisation is right for you. Ask each potential partner you’re considering for case studies and examples of their past results. Therefore, this can help you get a clearer picture of what working with them will bring to your company.

Take this as an opportunity to also understand their efforts within your niche area. Explore the different techniques used and go in-depth to see how certain strategies played out over time. If an agency is truly wooing you as a client they’ll be happy to share past clients that are a point of pride for them. In fact, it can be a red flag if an agency doesn’t have any success stories to share.

Top4 Marketing has worked with some of Australia and Indonesia’s most successful companies. Our digital marketing case studies demonstrate the goal of our campaign, approach and results. See if you have similar projects within your specific industry in mind. If you do, get in touch with our team anytime! Just fill out the form here.

3. Are your SEO strategies Google compliant?

SEO is especially important when you decide to embark on digital marketing for your business. While paid advertising, social media and other online platforms can generate traffic to websites. The majority of online traffic is driven by search engines. Organic search results cover more digital real estate, appear more credible to savvy searchers and receive way more clicks than paid advertisements. In other words, SEO has more or less 20x more traffic opportunities than PPC on both mobile and desktop.

That’s why you need to set aside a question specifically about SEO for your potential digital marketing partner.

Not every SEO strategy is considered a “white hat.” It’s important to be upfront with your potential digital marketing partner and ask whether the SEO techniques they deploy are high quality and Google compliant. If your potential digital marketing partner uses black hat SEO techniques, Google may choose to penalise your website and prevent your web pages from ranking to perpetuity. Any website that appears to be using spammy or low-quality techniques is unlikely to rank well in Google search.

Local Seo for Digital marketiing

Avoid these black-hat strategies:

Before embarking on a partnership with a digital marketing agency, make sure your potential partner avoid these black-hat strategies:

  • Keyword stuffing
  • Comment spam
  • Duplicate content
  • Irrelevant anchor text
  • Low-quality backlinks
  • Niche edits

The reality is that black hat SEO providers are a lot cheaper than high-quality SEO services. Their strategies may work in the short term but Google is always on the lookout for these types of tactics. In other words, paying for the cheaper option will not pay off in the long run.

High-quality SEO providers may charge more but the work they do is higher quality and drives SEO benefits for the long term. The Top4 Marketing team are website marketing experts and one of our specialities is search engine optimisation (SEO). We help clients gain visibility, leads, customers and supporters through search discoverability and getting to the 1st page of Google.

Top4 Marketing is always on our toes with all Google updates and uses only legal SEO methods. We have a proven system developed after over two decades of search engine marketing work. Furthermore, we have many successfully executed campaigns, placing our clients on the first page of Google local and national for highly competitive keywords. Contact us and our experts will be in touch!

4. How much should my company be involved in the process?

Business owners and entrepreneurs have a lot on their plates. Choosing to outsource your digital marketing strategy means lightening the load and delegating multiple tasks out-of-house. As such, when you’re partnering with a digital marketing agency, it’s important to communicate how involved (or uninvolved) your team wants to be in the process.

Check with each digital marketing partner you consider to see how involved your team needs to be. Some agencies charge more for things like keyword research or meta tag implementation. Your team might want to help in content strategy or you may want a hands-off approach where you simply receive periodic reviews of the strategies deployed.

Insight Top4 -Even If A Brand Can’t Do SEO, It Can Still Do Local SEO

You may be involved in:

  • Regular meetings with your SEO specialist
  • Keyword research or content strategy
  • Ideation, editing or publication of content
  • Uploading new pages or metadata
  • Reporting your own analytics

Most agencies will want to have some contact with your team or access your Google Search Console account. Discuss the level of involvement your business is comfortable with or expects so you can be prepared to dedicate the necessary time and resources.

5. How do you measure digital marketing success?

Digital marketing success looks different to every brand. Some brands are hyper-focused on ranking for certain industry keywords. Others want to rank for related long-tail keywords that are less competitive. It’s important to be clear about what digital marketing success means to you.  Thus, your digital marketing partner can let you know whether that expectation is plausible or unrealistic.

Digital marketing success can look like any number of things:

  • More clicks and more converting traffic
  • Improved total keyword rankings and impressions for relevant keywords
  • Better CTRs (click-through rates) for new or existing pages
  • Better PSI (PageSpeed Insights), Core Web Vitals, and mobile usability scores
  • Successful growth in your SERP (search engine results page) average position
  • Improved ROI for your digital marketing budget

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Discuss your goals and how a potential digital marketing partner will measure success over the short term and over time.

Here at Top4 Marketing, we firmly believe that if you’re not measuring then you’re not marketing. When you partner with us, we will set up Google and other analytics measurement tools that allow you to make informed decisions about your marketing channels. Using actionable analytics, we will let you and your team know how good or bad you are doing online. Contact us and our experts will be in touch.

6. What are your pricing options or do you require long-term contracts?

No one would ever enter into a business transaction without getting the facts about pricing and contracts. You’ve found the company you want to go with, great. Now it’s time to start talking numbers. 

Ask for a pricing list for all the different services they provide. Chances are there will be packages for each service, or costs for individual deliverables, such as links or blog posts. Thus, with this information in hand, you can make a final decision if that company’s options are within your budget or worth the cost.

Many digital marketing contracts are based on deliverables which can impact the time required. If you are pursuing a managed campaign, you’re paying for web marketing experts to help you with a number of different projects over time. But be wary of SEO strategists or agencies that require you to lock in for a year without having proven their value to your brand.

Here at Top4 Marketing, our flat-rate unlimited marketing platform. Our team are available to help your business grow online. Join today and as a bonus, our combo 20 plan includes unlimited requests and is backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Optimise your digital presence and explode your website traffic for search engines and social media. Choose a package that perfectly suits your business!

Ask the right questions upfront before hiring a digital marketing partner

Overall, it’s important that you become a strong advocate for your business. Ask the right questions. Moreover, make sure you’re on the right page with the final digital marketing strategist you choose to partner with. Understand the ins and outs of your new digital marketing plan upfront. This will help you find more success and lead to a more successful partnership.

Top4 Marketing is your dedicated marketing and technical team. We set ourselves apart from other agencies in delivering meaningful results with our very own unique geolocation marketing platform, Top4. Built for you by experts, our proprietary technology makes it easy to start and run your business.

Top4 comes with several amazing features baked right in to get your business on the first page of Google. Designed to deliver to your target market using geographic, categorical and demographic targeting. Top4’s Service Area feature helps your business will be found in the very suburbs that your potential customers are searching.

Try it, it’s easy and takes only a few minutes! Join Top4 today!

To find out how we can help you with your Website + Marketing, using our unique location marketing platform called Top4, get in touch today at

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