We all know how important the role of an advertising agency is in creating an effective campaign. From mainline advertising to creating a strong digital presence, having an agency that understands your brand’s persona is crucial to creating a great marketing and advertising strategy. But how do you select the right agency for your campaign?

Here is a quick step-by-step guide to selecting the right advertising agency for your brand:

Shortlisting the advertising agency:

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We already know how varied the different types of advertising agencies and their services can be. In fact, if you were to do a quick Google search of all the advertising agencies in your city alone, you’ll probably end up with pages and pages of search results. So how do narrow down the list of companies that you want to work with for your campaign?

One of the best ways to do this is to keep in mind three very important aspects of your campaign; collateral, creativity, and cost. These factors should give you a yardstick for selecting agencies as they give you a brief idea of what you need from these organizations. For example, the number of collateral for your campaign will give you an idea of the size of the agency you should pick. More collateral will mean you’ll need an agency that has the resources to deliver quickly and consistently, while more targeted campaigns would do well with creative boutiques and other specialized agencies. Similarly, creativity and agency costs can also give you a proper indication of the type and the size of the agency that would work best with your brand.

Consider sector-wise experience:

Though this may not be a hard-and-fast rule, there is no doubting that having an agency that has worked in your company’s sector is advantageous. This is because the advertising company will have a better understanding of your target market, as working in the field would have given them an idea of the type of creatives your audience prefers. This is particularly relevant if your work is in specialized fields such as healthcare.

If you’re very particular about working with an advertising agency who has worked in your industry, their portfolio of work is a good place to figure out if they’re ideal for your brand. Some advertising agencies also have case studies on their websites which will give you an idea of their thought process for the campaigns in your sector.

Reviewing the creative work:

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Great advertising is all about creating attention for the product. That’s why it’s so important to seek out agencies with very strong creative reputations. But how do you judge an agency’s creativity without actually meeting them?

An agency’s portfolio is one of the best places to start. Every advertising agency has a page on their website dedicated to their portfolio of work. The portfolio page gives you a brief glimpse into the mindset of an agency, how creative they are, what they are capable of and how they execute briefs.

A good tip when look at the portfolio is to pay attention to creatives that match the style and tone of the campaign you wish to create. This is because it becomes very easy to explain to an agency what exactly you need for your campaign, using these as references.

Understanding the range of services that will be needed:

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As discussed, an important aspect you must keep in mind while selecting an advertising agency are the number and range of services needed as this will determine how big an agency you’ll require for your strategy. If you have a campaign that needs to be executed in the mainline, digital and BTL spaces at the same time, a full-service agency would probably be a good choice for your brand. However, for individual collateral or specialized campaigns, a creative boutique would be your best bet for an effective campaign.

 Meeting the agency’s team:

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This is probably one of the most crucial steps towards finalizing the agency you’re going to be working with. When you meet an advertising agency, you’re generally in touch with an account manager and a senior creative. This presents the perfect opportunity to give them an idea of what is required and clear all your queries about the way the agency functions and their work ethic. It’s also a great way of figuring out if the agency is a good fit for your brand.

Preparing the brief:

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The brief is probably the single most important document before any campaign. It’s essentially used as a guide for the advertising agency and tells them what your brand’s requirements are for the campaign. This is why it’s important to take some time to figure out what to include in it as it answers crucial questions such as what the theme, tone and main highlights of the campaign should be. Remember, the brief is the first step in any campaign, so making sure it’s clear and easily understandable is important for creating any great marketing strategy.