Where should a business start when trying to find the right professional online marketing company for them?  Here are the key issues to consider.
grow your online business
Is it time to ramp up your online advertising and marketing efforts?

Most businesses are realizing that an ever increasing number of their prospective customers are searching for their services online.  They don’t want to fall behind their competitors in this new avenue.

So you are ready to jump in… but how?  With who?  Or should you run your own Google campaign for your business?

If you are like most businesses, you are inclined to hire an online marketing company.  Why?

Reason to consider a professional online marketing company

  1. You don’t have the time to do your own marketing.  Where would you find 10-15 hours a week to stay on top of it?
  2. You don’t have the expertise.  You know plumbing, or financial planning, or how to run your business.  But, for the same reason you hired a CPA to handle your taxes, you believe that it makes more sense to let an expert handle your marketing.
  3. You crunched the numbers and realized that improvement in your marketing results more than paid for the advertising services of an expert.

Where to find a quality marketing professional?

  1. search online for internet marketing expertSearch online- You can do a search for a profes
    sional online advertising service/company (or related terms).  There are plenty to choose from.
  2. oDesk- Some companies and business owners are going to outsourcing sites like oDesk, or Elance to find what they hope to be a quality contractor for less.  As with most things in life, there are good and not so good options available.
  3. Large national advertising companies like Reach Local, Yodel, YP.com (yellow pages online), and others.  You don’t necessarily need to look for these companies.  They will find you.  There is a huge caution on working with professional online marketing companies like Reach Local, which you can read about in another article.

What to look for in a professional online advertising company?

  1. Not just activity… but results.  Every online marketing firm should be able to show internet marketing guruyou what they are doing in your account (“we added 8,000 more keywords!”).  But, at the end of the day, you need to know that if you spend X, you earned 3X in return.  Find out if they track the return on your marketing investment (ROI), or if they just provide a fancy interface that shows you how many clicks you got (and a ton of other info that can be confusing).
  2. Ongoing improvement through testing.  One of the chief complaints I hear from my clients regarding their experience split testing internet marketingwith some professional internet advertising firms is that they get your account set up, but don’t seem to be doing much every month to improve the results.  Always look for a marketing agency that is testing out different ads (called A/B split testing), weeding out underperforming keywords, adding new ones, updating your website landing pages to match the ads, etc.  Do you realize that by doing what is called Kaizen (continuous improvement), that a mere 7% improvement in results each month can double your profits in just one year?
  3. See their work as a partnership.  This means they stay connected with you (you don’t have to chase them down with questions or updates).  It means they provide ongoing ideas and advice for your marketing.  It means you are convinced they want to help your business grow, not just milk it for income.

For more great (free!) information and ideas on marketing your business, visit 2ndMileMarketing.com