Corporate Marketing Agency Content


As a Content Strategist for Bayshore Solutions (now Spinutech), I was tasked with contributing to the agency’s blog. Below are a couple of samples.

How to Determine How Much Agency Support You Need

If you’re tasked with leading marketing strategy, you’ve probably asked yourself this question: should I keep all marketing initiatives in-house or outsource projects with a reputable marketing agency?

How you invest your marketing strategy depends on your resources and goals. Regardless of a marketing department’s size or expertise, some teams may find themselves leaning more heavily on support from a full-service digital agency while others benefit most from focused support in specialized areas. To help you determine how much agency support will earn your marketing team the most ROI, we’ve compiled a list of questions to get you started.

Ask yourself, is your company task-driven or strategy-driven?

Think back to a time when your team started a new marketing campaign or launched a new product—was everyone focused on quickly getting items checked off the list to meet deadlines, or were they dedicating a larger portion of allocated time towards vision, strategy and planning?

Both strategy and execution are equally important, but the end results skyrocket when these two components are in sync.

If your team excels at creating marketing assets — perhaps you have amazing brand storytellers and designers — but find that overlooked details are being uncovered when you’re knee-deep in a project, then your team may benefit from strategy support from an agency.

Alternatively, if your team is full of masterminds who thrive at planning the how, why, when and where of digital marketing pieces but are falling behind on estimated timelines, then your team could see a world’s difference by bringing in execution support from an agency.

Does your team have the bandwidth to reach your company’s marketing goals?

Maybe your team’s pain points don’t have to do with their strategy or execution capabilities. If you have a marketing team that’s adept in both areas but still find yourself pushing back deadlines or looking at subpar results, then the issue may be inadequate time and resources.

In this case, the best starting point is an open discussion with your marketing department to get collective insight on what would best help move the needle. From this conversation, you can better gauge the amount and duration of support your team will need.

For example, if your team is struggling with recurring deliverables, like blogs, social media or email campaigns, then you may want to consider an ongoing agency retainer that covers the projects your team doesn’t have the capacity to accomplish on a weekly, monthly or quarterly basis.

However, if your team is struggling because of a new project or launch that burdens them with additional work on top of the typical day-to-day — like a website rebuild, for example — then you may want to consult with a digital agency for a one-time project.

And, if your team is experiencing a combination of the two bandwidth issues mentioned above, working with an agency on a one-time project is a great way to see if they’re the right fit for an ongoing monthly retainer to help move your team closer to your company’s goals.

Do you have urgent upcoming deadlines or projects smoldering on the back-burner?

Even if growing your marketing team is a plan currently in the works, can your immediate projects and goals wait while you source new talent, interview prospective employees and onboard team members? If there’s an immediacy factor weighing on you, your team could benefit from a full-service digital agency that can partner you with a skilled “pre-packaged” team that’s ready to tackle looming marketing projects.

Are there certain areas of your marketing strategy that aren’t performing as well as others?

What are the top three strengths and top three weaknesses of your marketing department as a whole? Once you’ve compiled that list, you can begin connecting the dots to see which specific components of your digital marketing strategy needs extra support.

While some companies may need help with everything from brand development to content strategy to website design, others may need help with specific niche areas, like paid search ad campaigns or email nurture campaigns.

And, if you choose a digital agency that is known for being collaborative, then outsourcing support isn’t just a quick solve to fill in gaps temporarily. It’s also an opportunity to set up your internal team for success in the future. By working closely with experts, your internal team can work on those areas of growth and build a stronger, diversified skill set.

For example, let’s say you have a skilled writer on staff who doesn’t have a strong understanding of SEO best practices. By working closely with an SEO strategist from a collaborative digital agency, they can become more versed in that area of marketing — and while they may not necessarily become experts, any professional development for your team is only an added benefit for you and your company as a whole.

Bayshore Solutions is an end-to-end digital agency providing customized brand storytelling, web design & development, e-commerce, digital marketing, creative, and hosting solutions to companies seeking to grow their business. For over 23 years, we’ve helped clients define their audiences, create compelling stories, implement innovative technology, and grow their brands.

Contact Bayshore Solutions today to discuss how we can help grow your business through expert digital marketing.



10 Questions to Ask a Digital Marketing Agency Before Hiring Them

When you hire a digital marketing agency, you enter a relationship. And just like any promising business relationship, it should be a mutually beneficial partnership that lasts for years to come. After all, if you’re going to invest time and budget towards an agency, you want to make the most of those valuable resources.

To help you choose a digital marketing agency, we’ve compiled a list of 10 fundamental questions you should ask before entering a partnership.

1. How large is your agency and how long have you been in business?

While bigger isn’t always better, it’s important to understand how many resources an agency has available. Assess what aligns best with your company’s primary goals and initiatives. If your company is looking for a wide range of digital marketing support, an agency with a larger team that can provide end-to-end solutions may work best. However, you may not want an agency so large that you get lost in the shuffle — a personal understanding of your business goals makes all the difference.

Additionally, the length of time an agency has been running can be an indicator of their success. Digital technology changes quickly and agencies come and go, but a nimble agency with a strong talent base continues to evolve and stay relevant.

2. What marketing tactics does your agency specialize in?

The most effective marketing strategies combine cross-channel tactics. Depending on your goals, you might focus on content, search engine optimization, user experience, lead nurturing, pay-per-click ads, or any combination of these. A major advantage of a full-service agency is subject matter experts in each of these areas work alongside each other for a cohesive strategy. Choose an agency that excels in all of the tactics you require.

3. Do you have experience in my industry?

Every industry has nuanced themes, terminology and customer behavior, so it can help if your agency has worked with other clients in your industry or a closely related one. Ask about customer testimonials and case studies.

That isn’t to say that a marketing agency has to have worked with a company exactly like yours. One of the strengths of an experienced digital marketing agency is that their team is accustomed to working with a variety of different clients, and know the research and questions required to execute great work. But, it can definitely be reassuring to know that you’re partnering with an agency that knows your field.

4. What is your process for working with my team?

A marketing agency with a strong team should have a general, streamlined process to keep communication open, and willing to tailor their processes to make your life easier. Some companies may want weekly check-ins with their agency and deliverables sent over as they’re ready, while others prefer monthly meetings and deliverables packaged in one monthly email. Whatever you prefer, the agency you work with should be flexible to accommodate you.

5. Are all of your team members local and readily available?

It’s important for you to know where the team is located geographically. For one thing, a shared or nearby time zone makes scheduling meetings a bit easier. In addition, you may feel more comfortable meeting with your digital marketing team in person, so you may want to choose an agency that is local to you, willing to travel to meet with you, or in a location that is easy for you to visit.

Many marketing agencies use offshore or third-party contractors to carry out their work. You may not mind, but you may feel more comfortable knowing that the people with whom you meet regularly are actually the ones speaking on behalf of your brand.

6. Do you have design and development resources at your agency?

Most digital media today relies heavily on visuals and interactivity, from social media content to a whole website design. When your agency partner makes recommendations, especially for your website, they should not limit their recommendations because of their own skill limitations. With a full team of designers and developers, they should be able to handle whatever works best in support of your goals. Plus, using in-house designers helps keep all of your assets like ad creative, content designs, and more, on brand.

7. Do you have experience in my preferred platforms?

If you’ve already built sales funnels and systems into a content management system (CMS) that works well for you, make sure your agency knows how to work in that CMS. Some marketing agencies specialize in certain CRMs and marketing platforms. If you prefer a certain CRM, like HubSpot, you might inquire about the agency’s partner status with the platform. Agencies that have achieved a high status level with your preferred CRM have proven their expertise.

8. How often will we meet or receive reports on performance?

Naturally, you will want to know how your efforts perform and keep tabs on your ROI. Make sure that the agency can provide you with the frequency of touchpoints you prefer. Also ask about what each performance report entails. What information is covered? Which members of your team should attend? Will you receive access to analytic reports in real-time? You can ask to see samples of performance reports, which is helpful if you have a strong preference for how you digest information, or if you need to pass the information along to your leadership.

9. How do you report on status and budget?

You want to make sure that you partner with an agency that has amazing project and account managers, so you don’t have to worry about projects going way over budget or over time. Your agency should be able to explain whether status and budget reports come in the form of a weekly, personalized email, in automated emails, a real-time dashboard or other method. You may also want the opportunity to talk through these reports during your regular meetings.

10. What are your company’s values, and do they align with ours?

We all know culture fit is essential when hiring internally, but it’s also important in hiring a digital marketing agency. You need both teams in sync and communicating efficiently — which means you should choose a marketing agency you feel good doing business with. For example, look for an agency who takes a proactive approach to solving your problems and who views themselves as an extension of your team.

Bayshore Solutions is an end-to-end digital agency providing customized brand storytelling, web design & development, e-commerce, digital marketing, creative, and hosting solutions to companies seeking to grow their business. For over 23 years, we’ve helped clients define their audiences, create compelling stories, implement innovative technology, and grow their brands.

Contact Bayshore Solutions today to discuss how we can help grow your business through expert digital marketing.