The average small business puts about 10% of its revenue toward its digital marketing budget.

When you’re spending that much money, you want to make sure that your digital marketing strategy is on point. Hiring a great marketing expert will do that. Hiring a bad one is like taking that 10% of your revenue and burning it.

Finding the right digital marketing expert is vital to your business’s success, but it’s not necessarily going to be easy. Knowing what to look for starts with knowing what questions to ask.

In this post, we’re going to tell you 7 questions that you should always ask before hiring a digital marketing expert. Marketing a small business gets more complex with each passing year, so keep reading and make sure that you have the right digital marketing ideas backing your company and products up.

1. What Is Your Process?

Every digital marketing firm has a process by which they get results for their clients. By asking each one what their process entails, you can figure out which marketing expert is most conducive to the way that you want your marketing campaign to operate.

Being creative is one aspect of digital marketing, but an expert should be goal driven and strategic about how to achieve their goals. No two processes will be exactly the same, but if they can clearly explain their process to you, then it’s probably well-developed and proven to be successful.

While you’re in this realm, find out what areas of digital marketing they specialize in. A lot of digital marketing experts will claim to work in everything from web development to social media management. Not all of those will be able to walk the walk.

If you’ve got specific areas you want to focus on, you need them to have that kind of expertise.

2. Have You Worked With Similar Businesses?

Industry experience is an important factor in which digital marketing expert you’ll end up choosing. You never want to pick one that’s never worked within your particular industry before. Ask if they have familiarity with your industry and if they do, ask to see some examples of successful campaigns with comparable businesses. 

In many ways, previous success in your industry is the most important thing to look for. They won’t need any hand-holding when it comes to crafting the right social media, SEO, or PPC campaigns for you, as they’ve already done it before. 

3. Who Do You Have Working On This Project?

Bigger digital marketing companies will have experts from different fields working for them. On one hand, this can be quite enticing because it should mean that you’re going to be set up for success in multiple realms of digital marketing

On the other, you need to ensure that you’re getting all that they’re promising you. If you don’t have access to all of the team members that you need, then they aren’t giving you the best possible service. 

Another important thing to consider is your point of contact with the company. You need to make sure you’re being updated on a regular basis with results, changes, new ideas, etc. Communication is an important part of this entire process – don’t settle for a marketing expert that can’t tell you how things are going.

4. What Are Your Measurables?

Speaking of results and communication, you should also find out how they measure success. The metrics that a particular expert uses need to be in line with the metrics that you use to gauge a successful campaign. To get on the same page, it’ll be helpful to communicate your expectations right off the bat.

For instance, if you’re looking to boost conversions, it’s not going to help you to have your social media numbers reported. Although social media is an important cog in the process, conversions mean that your website is actually doing what it’s supposed to. 

In this scenario, the measurables they should be looking at are click-through rate, landing page traffic, and conversion rate.

5. When Will We See Results?

When you start out as a digital marketing expert, it’s important to get your head wrapped around the timelines involved. Any marketing expert that tells you that you’re going to see results right away has nothing to back that up with. 

Inbound marketing techniques require time to develop, which can be tough to stomach. You always want a digital marketing company to shoot straight with you. It could take 6 months for the initial marketing efforts to start working their magic and 1-2 years to be able to look back and see significant improvements.

6. What Is Our Involvement?

Before you pose this question, ask yourself how involved you really want to be in the marketing efforts. The reason you’re hiring a digital marketing expert is to have someone that knows what they’re doing come up with digital marketing ideas.

That being said, there should always be some degree of collaboration involved between yourself and your marketing expert. It’s your company, your brand, and your reputation on the line, so you need to have input in important marketing decisions.

Finding out what they’re going to need from you on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis can help you figure out which marketing company to go with. 

7. How Much Will This Cost?

Finally, you’d be remiss not to find out how much this is all going to cost your company. Some marketing agencies charge on an hourly basis or retainer fees, while others will charge a flat rate for particular projects.

How much a campaign will cost you, in the end, will depend on what you’re asking of them. This is when it’s a good idea to talk to multiple marketing experts to get a sense of the disparity between fees.

With all of the information, you can make the right decision for your needs and your finances. Staying within your budget is always a good idea, but the right digital marketing agency can take your business to new heights.

Choose the Right Digital Marketing Expert ASAP

Now that you understand a bit more about how to choose the best digital marketing expert for your business, it’s time to start looking at where your business could improve.

If you want one of the best full-service digital marketing experts in the world, look no further than Drive Social Media. We specialize in paid social media marketing on Facebook and Instagram, but we’re really a full-service marketing firm that can boost SEO, improve your website, and create next-level content for your brand.

To find out how we can take your marketing efforts to the next level, contact us today.