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How Much Do I Need to Know About Digital Marketing to Work with an Agency?

Engaging a digital marketing agency is an exciting moment. It’s likely the first step towards unlocking the next level of potential for your business, and finding out how to reach your ideal audience. It’s also a highly collaborative process—which does present some complexities.

Working together in an area as difficult and often unfamiliar as digital marketing can be daunting for those participating in campaigns for the first time. Will you be able to understand the value of SEO, PPC and other digital marketing principles when the best campaigns are run by experts in each of these fields?

Blink SEO is a full-service digital marketing agency based in Norwich, UK, working with clients all over the world. Over the years, we’ve collaborated with teams and individuals with all levels of experience, from the well-versed, to complete novices. Here’s our take on how much you should know about these practice areas before collaborating with an external agency on a digital marketing campaign.

Enough to understand its potential value

Digital marketing is a technical subject. It involves concepts and terminology you will not be used to using. You don’t need to have worked on PPC or SEO to work with an agency—in fact, that’s usually why you’ve hired them. But understanding the value of these services will help smooth out the process for everyone involved.

These concepts also aren’t as simple as they used to be. Over time, search engines and other online technologies have become smarter and more effective at identifying top-quality, relevant content for users and at filtering out the not-so-good stuff.

This means that organisations should be paying more attention to digital marketing and, ideally, actively participating in the development of the strategy alongside the technical experts they’ve hired.

What should I know?

Again, if you needed to be a complete connoisseur of digital marketing to instigate an SEO or PPC project, you probably wouldn’t have hired an agency. However, there are a few basic concepts we feel people should have some knowledge of before the project kicks off:

What is SEO/PPC?

The chances are, you’re concerned about your website’s performance in search results and the number of leads you’re generating through this channel. You may have recognised or been told that SEO and PPC are the most likely solution(s), but it’s important to understand what these are.

  • SEO: This stands for search engine optimisation. SEO improves the flow of organic, unpaid traffic to your website by optimising a number of factors telling search engines that your website is trustworthy and houses relevant content for its potential users.
  • PPC: Also referred to as paid search, PPC stands for ‘pay-per-click’ advertising. Advertisers place ads targeting specific search terms and pay a fee every time a user clicks on a result.

What are keywords?

Simply put, keywords are the exact words people are using to search for products or services. They are also known, and perhaps more accurately described as, search queries. By identifying the right search queries that describe the information on a webpage and optimising the page for that term, you can drive relevant traffic towards it, and traffic that is more likely to turn into leads.

How long do projects take to yield results?

One of the main benefits of PPC advertising is that its results are fairly immediate and easy to track.

For SEO, the answer is a little more complicated. While keywords are important, there are a number of other ranking factors search engines use to assess websites.

Optimising all of these and building your site’s authority takes time and continuous work. As a rule of thumb, SEO projects can take six months to a year for strong results in competitive areas.

For less competitive fields the results can be near instant. At the start of any project though, this timeframe should be explained to you, so that your expectations are managed and that KPIs can be discussed with clarity as the campaign moves on.

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