Today’s consumer is inundated with words, logos, and images, and making your products or services stand out from the crowd is often easier said than done, especially if you’re trying to do it all on your own.
A full-service marketing agency can help you find your customers among the melee and connect with them in a way that keeps your product or service memorable and your business profitable. By relying on a team of skilled professionals and implementing proven industry processes, a full-service marketing agency gathers, tracks, and analyzes the most relevant data for our goals to develop a strategy that will take your business to the next level.
What is a full-service marketing and advertising agency and what does it do?
A full-service marketing agency provides a variety of resources, services, and competencies to meet all of your marketing and advertising needs, and is often the perfect starting point for any business no matter where they are in their lifecycle. Product and service promotion are a constant necessity, but finding the right people for the right purpose–from logos and websites to sales and customer acquisition–can quickly become a long, confusing, expensive, and tedious endeavor business owners simply don’t have time for.
Whether with in-house resources or through third-party contractors, a full-service marketing agency provides solutions to all of these tasks, offering their clients the opportunity to access everything they need to expand their brand and market their business effectively with a single point of contact.
Services offeredby a full-service marketing agency typically include, but are not limited to:
- Marketing and Advertising
- Strategic Planning
- Branding and Design
- Strategy and Research
- Videography and Photography
- Website Design
- Social Media Presence
- Digital Marketing
- Creative Assistance
How does a full-service marketing and advertising agency make money?
Full-service marketing and advertising agencies can charge for their services several different ways, depending on factors like the type of project or contract, the specific services needed, and the duration of the project. Providing different payment options allows the agency to optimize their resources and the client to get the most value for their budget.
Some of the most common ways full-service marketing and advertising agencies structure their billing are:
Contracts. The payment is specified up front as a percentage of profits, or a flat rate for services provided. This provides the security of knowing exactly what the service will cost, and what you will get in return.
Hourly fees. This is a popular option–especially among clients who want to be heavily involved in their own marketing–because it is easily customizable depending on the client, the project, and the goal, and allows greater flexibility throughout the partnership.
Per project. When the hours required to complete a project are unknown, paying per project can give you confidence that your project will be done with a focus on quality, not quantity. You and the agency will determine an estimated budget and timeline, but efforts will not be constrained by hours.
How are full-service marketing agencies structured?
A full-service marketing agency is structured as an independent company who makes your business their business. With in-house experts on everything from digital marketing and creative design to social media outreach and public image, a full-service agency works closely with you to capture your brand and help work toward your goals.
Depending on your company, your project, your contract, and your preference, you may work directly with one specialty or department, or with a full team of experts. Some agencies also assign a project manager or account executive to serve as a liaison between client and company and as a single point of contact.
What is the difference between creative agencies, boutique agencies, and full-service agencies?
Creative, boutique, and full-service agencies may often share many of the same areas of expertise or services, but there are some distinct differences.
A creative agency focuses more on product, service, or brand genesis and development; that is, helping to flesh out a business that is new to its market. This primarily includes design-centered projects like concepts, logos, branding messages, and short term goals, but may come short of actually marketing the new business.
A boutique agency is typically a small business that specializes in a high level of customization for niche industries. They are more likely to work with smaller independent businesses as opposed to larger ones, and while they may offer the same services as full-service agencies, their resources may be less robust or simply more concentrated, such as a few individuals serving in multiple capacities as opposed to large teams for specific skill sets.
A full-service marketing and advertising agency has the ability to take a brand from infancy to promotion and development seamlessly. Everything from the creation of the idea to the design and structure of the brand and even the execution of ongoing advertisement, brand outreach, and business strategy can be achieved with the same company. A full-service marketing agency can help with both short-term and long-term goals for businesses of all sizes, and will typically have experience across a wide range of industries. Larger teams and more resources also give a full-service agency greater capacity for projects of all scopes and sizes.
A full-service marketing and advertising agency essentially combines all of the resources, capabilities, and services of several different agencies. By consolidating everything your company needs for promotion and strategy into one partner, full-service marketing and advertising agencies can save you time, money, and energy, allowing you to focus on what’s really important–running your business.
Is there a difference between marketing and advertising?
Although often combined, marketing and advertising play two very different and crucial roles. While marketing focuses on finding the correct target audience for a business–the “who”–advertising focuses on the “how” of promoting the business to that target audience.
In short, advertising is an element of marketing, and you can’t have one without the other. While some companies specialize in one or the other, a full-service marketing and advertising agency does both, as well as everything in between, for a more cohesive marketing strategy. Using a full-service marketing and advertising agency ensures your business strategy maintains the same professional voice and branding across multiple platforms and channels, and that your goals are nested within each other for better, more sustainable results.
Finding the Perfect Partner for Your Marketing and Advertising Needs
Whether you’re a new business entering the market, an existing business looking to expand, or an organization needing help with public relations and imaging, you need good marketing and advertising. With so many options, however, finding the right marketing and advertising agency to partner with can be a little daunting, so how can you make sure you’re making a good investment?
As you research marketing and advertising agencies, ask questions, such as:
- What is your goal for this partnership? Are you wanting help with long-term strategy, or just a brand refresh?
- What is the experience of this agency? Do they have a portfolio, and what do their past clients have to say?
- Have they worked with brands, services, or companies like yours before?
- What kinds of services does this agency offer? Can you get everything you need from them and can they grow with you, or do you anticipate needing to look elsewhere for future services as your business expands?
- What options do they offer for billing and payment, and what kinds of guarantees do they have for your satisfaction?
Remember, the business of a marketing and advertising agency should be building the success of yours in a symbiotic relationship; the two of you should be working together to achieve the goals for your company. If you don’t feel you are on equal ground with a particular agency or feel comfortable speaking openly with them about your goals or ideas, keep looking.
Make the Most of Your Marketing and Advertising with Freestyle
Freestyle is a full-service marketing and advertising agency with more than a decade of experience in helping businesses, nonprofits, state agencies, and organizations reach their target audience with meaningful messaging.
No matter where you are today or where you want to be tomorrow, Freestyle has the services you need to set the right goals and exceed every expectation, including:
- Web design, to ensure that your website delivers a user-friendly experience that represents your vision and drives your business forward.
- Social media and digital creative, to promote your brand to the right group and continually fine-tune your presence to make sure you always stay relevant and connected with your audience.
- Videography and photography, with highly-teams to help capture your brand and bring it to life through compelling, creative storytelling.
- Company branding and design, going beyond a logo to capture the essence of your business and communicate your story in a unique, creative, and memorable way.
- Strategic marketing, to develop and execute full-scale campaigns designed to take your business to the next level.