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Choosing Your Offshore Marketing Partner

11 Factors To Consider When Choosing An Offshore Digital Marketing Company

Do you need a handy list of factors to consider when choosing an offshore digital marketing partner? Read on!...

Ladies and gentlemen, fellow marketers cite multiple reasons for outsourcing their digital marketing needs. Let us peruse the top three motivations for outsourcing business tasks that an agency holder may struggle with. 

Motivations for outsourcing business tasks

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If you have been struggling with rising costs (both visible and scope creeps), battling acute talent shortages, and are looking to scale your business to name some of your plausible pain points, we are here to help address them. 

With experience and expertise of twelve-plus years under our belt, we know the nitty gritty of hiring a good offshore agency that will help you solve your problems. We understand the importance of making the right decision at this point. Therefore, we have compiled a checklist that you can use to make the best decision for your business. 

1. Try delving deeper beneath what meets the eye! 

We are all tempted to go by agency website claims, user reviews, and listings. But it might be all smoke and screens; therefore, it is important to separate fact from fiction and place greater trust in third-party review sites such as AmbitionBox and Clutch. An important caveat here is that they will majorly highlight reviews from happy customers. However, you can be assured of its veracity.

2. Open and honest communication

Vital for the success of any offshore outsourcing project, good, clear, and honest communication can be the foundation of healthy business transactions and interactions. Observe how well and deeply the agency POCs can address and communicate their standpoints and adapt to yours. Well-documented communication will ensure the seamless flow of execution and deliverables. As an agency owner, please confirm if you can call the offshore agency in case an urgent requirement crops up on your end or any other preferred mode of communication. Also, clarify the response times and your point of contact for hassle-free communication.

3. Account for time zone differences

When you choose to partner with an offshore agency, time zone differences can be a real challenge that needs to be accounted for and factored in. Ideally, you should be looking for agencies that offer assistance in your time zone, or glitches and unmet project deadlines will be inevitable, and no one wants that!

4. Demarcate well-defined, measurable KPIs

The agency may be well-equipped to handle all your requirements; however, if you fail to establish measurable and tangible KPIs before you ink the deal, you might be unable to track the progress and measure success, resulting in wasted time and resources. So, get very clear on your key performance indicators before you get on a call with the shortlisted agencies of your choice. They could range from SQLs from campaigns to revenue from blogs. Grab a pen and a notepad and brainstorm a list of relevant KPIs that will help you stay tuned to what’s cooking and if the initial investment is paying off.

5. Keep local holidays in mind

When you step into a different geographical area, virtually too, you have to account for their own list of holidays and week off. You don’t want to be stranded without support when you have questions to answer and reports to deliver to your clients. Therefore, it is essential to have a one-on-one with the prospective digital marketing agencies regarding their availability and options for support, especially during local holidays. 

6. Ensure that they have the requisite expertise

Digital marketing services run far and wide, and each niche has its own challenges and intricacies. So whether you are looking to amplify your user engagement and ROI with an agency’s Google Analytics consulting services or casting a great first impression with stellar UI/UX design services, before you sign across the dotted line, you must be very sure about their depth of expertise and experience in the respective business domain. 

In order to have a crystal clear picture of that, in addition to checking credentials and accreditations in the respective niche, feel free to request a conversation with their subject matter experts. When on the call, don’t hesitate to ask for references and ask if they have worked with personas similar to yours. Ask, and thou shall receive (politely, of course!)

7. Cost

Suppose profitability is the primary motive behind outsourcing your digital marketing needs, which is quite often the case. In that case, it is highly recommended to zero in on agencies in a country offering similar services at more affordable rates than in your current location. 

Key Factors for Small Business Service Provider Selection

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Not surprisingly, cost remains a major motivator, with businesses reporting a 70% cut back on labor costs when they choose to outsource. 

8. Look for case studies & client testimonials

Every reputed digital marketing agency will have a “learning/resource center” of sorts, wherein you can delve into their case studies, highlighting their experience with previous clients and how they helped those businesses achieve their digital marketing goals. This will indicate the process, what to expect regarding deliverables, and insight into accompanying client testimonials. 

It is always better to hear straight from the horse’s mouth before you make the decision, and reading genuine client testimonials can bring you closer to that.

9. Ensure strong internal integration amongst different service verticals

As mentioned earlier, digital marketing is a wide field with multiple offshoots. You need to be sure of the agency’s cross-vertical integration and synchronization, along with a full range of a la carte services that can be customized to suit your unique needs. 

It is always wise to ensure that the agency will not further outsource your work and offers a repertoire of digital marketing services with reasonable expertise so that you don’t have to deal with multiple vendors.

10. Flexible payment options

Last but not least, you need to look for payment options that suit your convenience. Look for digital marketing agencies that offer easy payment processes like the wallet or the recurrent model wherein you can load up your wallet with enough dough for the project at the start or look for auto payment options. 

Another thing to look out for is a short pay or deduction policy. This indicates the agency’s confidence in its abilities to deliver above and beyond what’s promised. 

11. Check for legal and regulatory requirements

If you are in the healthcare industry in the USA, you might want to consider the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance. Be very clear on the MSA (Master Service Agreement), NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement), SOW (Scope of Work), etc., to know exactly what you are agreeing to.

The Road Ahead

Woah! That’s quite a comprehensive list of factors that should help you get off the fence and make that decision! You might now want to draw up a list of digital marketing services you might want to outsource and those best catered to in-house.

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Naina Sandhir

A content writer at Mavlers, Naina pens quirky, inimitable, and damn relatable content after an in-depth and critical dissection of the topic in question. When not hiking across the Himalayas, she can be found buried in a book with spectacles dangling off her nose!

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