Are you a value shopper? When it comes to a few products, I’ll buy store brands or shop for lower prices-but only for products that don’t “matter” as much as others. But when it comes to service, I’ll pay a premium to ensure that I get top-notch results, especially when it comes to service for my business.
Depending on what type of service you’re looking for, there’s almost always a company to meet your needs. In some cases, the premium isn’t based just on quality, but is also determined by the amount or level of service you need. Here is a quick overview of a few options in the world of websites and marketing:
BASIC WEBSITES. Local or national companies can provide basic websites. Of course, we always recommend local (even if it’s not us). You may want to ask the following questions:
- Is the design based on a template, or is it customized?
- Do you write the copy, or do I provide it?
- Do you provide photos, or do I?
- Do you host the site? What are the fees? What is the contract length?
- How long will it take to complete the site?
ADVANCED WEBSITES. These companies can provide a more robust website with more personalized service. They often include interactive features, photos taken on your premises and customized content. Questions you may want ask:
- How much of my input will you need to write the copy?
- How much experience do you have with on-site photo shoots?
- What aspects will we be able to update ourselves once completed?
- Will you “walk us through” the process?
MARKETING PLANNING AND IMPLEMENTATION. A full-service marketing company can work with you to put together a comprehensive plan incorporating a wide range of marketing elements (including websites) to ensure that your target audience is effectively reached. Things to find out:
- What range of services do you offer?
- How do you interact with your clients?
- Do you offer different levels of services based on client needs?
- What are the contract requirements?
- Tell me about your client relationships
As a general rule, you should also find out how long a company has been in business and determine what extra value they bring to their clients. For example, DLA Creative is a boutique marketing firm. We’re focused on meeting the needs of clients who are extremely busy and need an agency that can take the bulk of marketing off their to-do list-or at least streamline the process. For other companies, the value added is a quick and easy website produced at an economical price.
No matter what option you choose, now is the time to start-or keep-investing in your marketing and online presence. Remember what Mark Twain said, “Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising.” iBi