Marcoms agencies are usually hired when a company recognises the need to do something it has neither the capability nor the capacity to handle internally. Growing pressure to maintain a presence in the digital arena is fast becoming one of the main reasons companies turn to agencies for outside assistance.
An agency will come in to pitch their ideas, which company executives ideally get very excited about, and a decision is made whether to engage the agency or not. However, agencies may hit barriers once the strategic planning begins in earnest and more people within the company get involved.
The types of teething problems can vary greatly, but here we have tried to identify some of the most common gaps that can be found between agencies and their clients for digital services, along with some guidelines on how to tackle each particular stumbling block as it crops up.
In any company, the internal marketing team can face resistance from the rest of the company with regards to sharing, data analysis and content generation. Where different departments store up information to use for their own benefit or needs, this results in ‘silos’: separate departmental storage containers of data and information hardly ever shared or used in collaboration between each other.
What’s the solution?
From the start, agencies have to be aware that existing internal communication methods and the organisational structure within a company can affect how information is shared among different departments and teams.
Therefore, if existing internal barriers are likely to affect the results delivered by the agency, an internal communications workshop between executives and heads of departments could be instrumental towards solving collaborative problems more effectively.
Every company has to strive towards nurturing an open communication environment among all its employees if it wishes to succeed in a competitive market. This will in turn foster more cooperative team frameworks, making the sharing of information interdepartmentally more fluid.
Ownership of digital channels
Another issue may arise if marketing teams feel reluctant to share control of their social media accounts and other digital platforms with an outsourced agency.
What’s the solution?
Any reluctance to share the ownership of digital platforms can be solved by mapping the roles of everyone who has social media or digital responsibilities, and making it clear how the teams will work together to create content, channel customer feedback and queries through to the right people, and ensure that timely responses are given.
Some clients choose to retain complete control of posting agency-generated content and responding to comments and queries on social media platforms.
Others opt to let the agency post scheduled digital content while they retain control of all queries and ad-hoc posts.
A third option is to give the agency full ownership and set up a process where the agency handles all posting, interactions and queries on social, channelling complaints and other issues through to the internal team via email. This can free up the internal team to focus on their core tasks without having to worry about constantly monitoring multiple social media channels.
There is no right or wrong choice – it all depends on a company’s objectives, needs and available resources.
Click here to see part 2 of this discussion. In the meantime, you can find out more about better use of social media by visiting the Pinnacle Marketing website: https://www.publitek.com/services/social-media.