In one sense, your content marketing firm works for you. Its job is to create content and strategies that allow your brand to shine. In another, important sense, though, you and your content marketing firm must work together to achieve results. The firm brings extensive knowledge of digital marketing strategies and technologies; you bring extensive knowledge of your company and your vertical.

Like any relationship, the one you have with your content marketing firm takes some work. You’ve got to invest an effort in it if you want it to be fruitful. The best content marketing tends to come when the client is engaged in the process—not just allowing it to run on autopilot or leaving the firm to fly blind with no direction or feedback.

So what can you do to show that you’re keen to see this important business relationship succeed? A few pointers:

Know what you want.

Different companies hire content marketing firms for different reasons. Perhaps you want to enhance your online presence or combat nasty reviews; perhaps you want to bring in more website traffic; or perhaps you just need some signs of life on your social media channels. However you’d define content marketing success, it’s important to let your marketing firm know it. (And also let the firm know if your goals change.)

Respond to e-mails.

Your content marketing firm may wish to run topic ideas by you, or request approval on certain pieces of content; you need to provide pretty quick feedback or else risk significant delays in the process. Please, make e-mails from your content marketing firm top priority!

Come up with some content ideas.

Your content marketing professionals will do plenty of brainstorming—but when you bring ideas to the table, perhaps based on comments or questions from your own clients, that helps refine and enhance the process.

Offer honest feedback.

The content that’s being produced is being produced in your name—so if you’re not comfortable with it, say so. Of course, there’s also a need to trust your marketing professionals to do what they believe to be best… but when you have questions or concerns, it’s best to voice them as early in the process as you can.

View reports.

Want to make sure you’re really getting something valuable out of the process? Well, so does your firm. They’ll send you plenty of data to review—so make sure you do so, and have a good sense of the progress being made on your behalf.

Get your team involved.

Finally, make sure you’re actually sharing and promoting your content on your personal social media channels—and encourage your employees to do likewise. Create a content company culture, and it will make the job of your marketing firm that much simpler.