Choosing a new Digital Agency? – Read This!

Econsultancy have just written an article on “20 things to consider when choosing a new agency“. I had to read this. It was either going to be highly informative or a load of rubbish. Not disrespect to Econsultancy, I value them as a new media publisher – but unfortunatley I felt this was a little off the mark. Some of Mr Chris Lake’s (article author) best and worst comments below (with some feedback!):

5. Are all of the clients on their credentials currently live accounts? You’ll often find different suppliers doing different things for the same client, therefore it’s key to understand what it is they’re actually delivering for the client and whether or not they’re still working for them.

SPOT ON. I see far too many agencies plaster logos all over there client lists when they have only ever done very minor pieces of work for them – be sure to probe questions about exactly what agencies have done for their clients.

12. Make a site visit. Get yourself down to their offices and see them in action. Better still, turn up unannounced and that way you get to see them warts and all. You also get to see the true scale of their business. 

GREAT IDEA. How can a client judge an agency purely on meeting them out of their comfort zone? – I would suggest a few client meetings to get a real ‘feel’ for the agency, the way they work and most significantly, the people you are going to be working with.

15. Is their bite as impressive as their bark? As part of the RFP and pitch process, make sure you ask them to demonstrate their design capability by designing a home page, a category landing page and a product page for your brand. Even if you end up outsourcing the design or doing it in-house, this will give you a good feel for their ability to understand what the customer experience should be and what journeys your customers will need to take on the site. This tends to separate the men from the boys.

RIDICULOUS. I can understand for a design based project why you would want the potential agency to prove the design skills; but asking them to design a homepage, category and listing page is overkill. Any agency with half a brain will know that the design of these pages will only come after meticulous usability work with end users. Plucking a concept out of the air will get them no where fast. Professional usability work sorts the men from the boys – not designing concepts!!

20 things to consider when choosing an Agency

20 things to consider when choosing an Agency

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