Most people have a pretty good idea what marketing involves, and for those in business the Four Ps come to mind immediately (price, place, product and promotion). However, a digital marketing agency in San Francisco or elsewhere is a bit different, building on that foundation but entirely operating in the Internet world instead of general contact with all consumers.
No surprise, the city by the Bay just north of Silicon Valley is a big embracer of digital marketing, so it pays to know and understand the discipline when considering how to choose a digital marketing agency in San Francisco to do the work.
Because of the fluid newness of digital marketing, many companies are not yet going to have a group with the requisite skill set to perform a proper breakthrough into the digital field. As a result, a number of companies choose outsourcing and contracting for digital marketing services. That said, doing so blindly can be catastrophic, especially when marketing campaigns need to launch by specific deadlines.
Types of Digital Agencies
There are plenty of providers in San Francisco. The key first step is to know what your needs are because digital marketing projects can obtained from a number of different types of providers. These include:
- Full-service providers - These agencies take over every aspect of digital marketing that a client may want. This choice is particularly helpful for those who have no skillset or resources whatsoever and need to get up and running quickly to have a market impact. Their services take over all design, development, and implementation tasks, so a company just has to provide the goals that needs to be achieved for their specific services and or products. This option also needs the biggest investment.
- Specialty firms - Particularly attractive when a company knows what digital marketing is and means for the business, but they need an expert to come in and address a particular aspect, such as rewriting a website to be SEO-focused versus general context.
- Freelancers - These are individuals who work as their own sole proprietorships or as independent contractors. They often work best on a project basis, helping out with one-time, fast deadline needs. Once finished, they are usually let go until another project comes up.
- Marketing services providers - These are traditional marketing agencies who have taken on digital services to expand their business and reach.
Unless a business has experienced, skilled resources in-house, getting started using digital marketing is usually best done by choosing an outside team that covers most aspects in package. As the campaigns gets up and running, changes can be made after the fact, tweaking the details or who has what task for maintenance or changes.
While it may be attractive to have multiple agencies involved, each handling a different task, they will tend to squabble with each other to get more business or control of the details. It's not worth the headache.
Services Available from a Digital Marketing Agency in San Francisco
From providers in San Francisco, the following services are the most common type of work regularly performed for companies going digital in marketing:
- Website development, planning, strategy, and implementation (including both content and e-commerce)
- Building effective email campaigns.
- Search engine ranking improvement and related cold-contact marketing
- Digital advertising
- Mobile device marketing
- Building or improving a social media presence
- Tracking or explaining Internet analytics
Just because a firm is hired to do the work for a client doesn't mean that their staff will be the actual designers producing the work. It's a common model for small digital markets to outsource again various pieces of a project and then stitch everything together to match what a client wanted. For this reason a company needs to confirm if a digital marketing agency will be outsourcing any parts of a project and which ones.
Last Notes to Consider
Ironically, a good number of digital marketers will have very thin understanding of traditional marketing principles and techniques. They are predominantly focused with Internet tools and trends, so the fundamentals of marketing are often not within their training.
This is possible because digital marketing is far more focused on coding and website display than it is on messaging and content. Ergo, a business still needs to be in the driver's seat on the content and what it says about their product or service.
Finally, when choosing a digital marketing agency in San Francisco or anywhere less, a company should take the time to be comfortable and choose wisely. Hiring a firm often involves a contract which can be hard to get out of prematurely later on.
BroadVision Marketing invites you to spend some time with us for a free Complimentary Marketing Strategy Session and learn about how our digital marketing agency functions.
Jaco Grobbelaar is the owner of BroadVision Marketing. BroadVision Marketing works with business owners to put in place inbound and outbound marketing strategies that consistently secure new clients. The BroadVision Marketing Training Center is located in Petaluma, CA and primarily serves companies in the San Francisco Bay area.