If you’re looking to hire or join a digital marketing agency in Singapore, you might have heard that they cost an arm and leg or that working in one leaves you with no downtime. Should you rubbish these claims and proceed or abort the mission? Our take? Don’t let these myths and common misconceptions deter you as they may not reflect the realities of all agencies!
In our first instalment of AKINLive, a Clubhouse podcast that arms you with marketing tips and tricks, we explored the topic of agency myths.
Let’s have a look at some of the key highlights:
Myth 1: "Agency life is intense and there is no downtime"
True and false, depending on the agency culture. While there is no such thing as an easy job, it’s important to strike a balance between working hard and having your own personal time. While agency life can be tough due to the dynamic nature of the industry, that does not mean you will be working around the clock!
As the saying goes, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Finding balance will be crucial in helping you manage and deliver your tasks promptly while having fun and growing at the same time.
Marketing continues to be a fast-paced industry that is driven by creativity and passion — one that allows you to wear different hats. A tip for job seekers? Find a company where you believe its culture fits you best!
Myth #2: “In-house and Agency Marketing Cover the Same Ground”
False. There are several parallels between in-house and agency marketing but the main difference lies with its focus. In-house marketing employees are paid to live and breathe the brand they work for, furthering specific objectives as a custodian of the brand. On the other hand, an agency focuses on offering a diversity of niches that enable them to adapt strategies across different clients, brands and industries.
Both in-house and agency marketing differ when it comes to the breadth and depth of their specialisation and scope. A formidable in-house team does not only consist of a Digital Marketing Manager but other roles such as a Content Strategist, SEO and SEM Expert, and more. Most companies may find it challenging to dedicate time and manpower resources to each marketing element with a limited budget. Thus, it is rare to find an in-house team that is a master at all aspects of marketing.
On the other hand, an agency consists of industry experts and knowledgeable professionals who specialise in specific areas. These are the consultants to turn to for the best practices. If your business is looking for a one-stop shop for all things marketing-related, then you might want to consider hiring an agency.
Myth #3: “Hiring an Agency Is Too Expensive”
False. An agency possesses talents with their own specialised niche who can impart the best practices and solutions. The work an agency does requires round-the-clock monitoring and highly specialised skills such as SEO and tech builds.
The value that they bring to a business is the reason behind the proposed monetary value. It is crucial to understand the needs of your business before deciding if you should hire an agency.
That said, sometimes the best use of your budget might not be to hire an agency! If your business is simply looking to set up simple processes or hire temporary manpower replacement, hiring a freelancer might be more cost-efficient. If you do decide to hire an agency, be mindful that you will be paying for skilled expertise, counsel and years of industry experience.
As a business, you should look towards your end goals and set realistic KPIs for the selected agency. Be sure to evaluate the outcomes and track if you are getting the value you paid for.
Myth #4: “Agencies Value Clients Who Can Pay More”
False. Agencies don’t put a price tag on you. Ideally, you should engage an agency that aligns with your company goals and mission. For instance, if you run a social cause, find an agency that believes in the work you do; if you run a food establishment, an agency that specialises in promoting the F&B scene in Singapore would be your best bet.
Agencies may also be willing to take on projects at a low-bono cost or with a smaller budget if they identify with the social need or if it’s relevant to their area of interest.
The specialisation of an agency is often shaped by the passion and interests of the team members. At AKIN, for instance, we believe that digitalisation is the future of marketing. We love working with clients who are forward-thinking and who embrace technology and data-driven approaches (Hit us up if you think we’re the agency for you!).
At the end of the day, it’s about finding a good agency that can provide the right counsel and advice to help your business succeed. In other words, find a partner and not a vendor. It is vital to know your priorities, values and principles that you hold true, and pick an agency that aligns with you in these key areas.
Hopefully, we've managed to help you distinguish and discern between a value-adding engagement and a low-value agency for your business. As for those interested in joining the industry, we hope you have a better understanding of what goes on in an agency.
Here at AKIN, we design marketing strategies for a restless digital generation by uncovering consumer and cultural truths to help brands articulate their purpose. We design impact-driven marketing campaigns based on data and sound analysis. Possessing a tech-first mindset, we build digital solutions that bring businesses closer to their audiences. Above all, our goal is to help brands nurture consumer relationships that will stand the test of time.
Listen to the full podcast below and follow us on Instagram @hello.akin for more updates. We will see you at our next session of AKINLive!
Written by Nicolette Wee