The marketplace for branding, advertising and marketing agencies in Dublin is very crowded. We should know, as a Dublin marketing agency we’re part of that landscape! But whilst that means we have to be at the top of our game to grow our business, it presents bigger challenges for prospective clients.
That’s why we thought we should try and help out. All of our team has worked in-house/client side at one point of other in their careers, so we pooled our knowledge and experience to create a guide to choosing a Dublin marketing agency, advertising agency or branding agency.
First things first…
Do I need a marketing agency, a branding agency or an advertising agency?
Think of marketing as being a whole cake. Marketing agencies cover most if not the whole cake. Advertising and branding are slices of that cake. As are PR, sales strategy, market research and a host of other disciplines that make up marketing as a discipline. Advertising agencies and branding agencies cover their specialist slice of the cake, so all their staff and resources are devoted to that one thing.
Large firms tend to have large marketing departments with numerous in-house specialists responsible for a particular “slice of the cake” so it makes sense for them to work with a number of specialist firms who only deal with the part of marketing that is their job.
A marketing agency covers all these specialisms under one roof, allowing smaller businesses with maybe only one or two in-house marketers to have a single point of contact for all their marketing support needs.
This is a general principle and not a hard and fast rule as you’ll find some larger firms entrust the majority of their marketing support to a single marketing agency and some smaller firms still choose to manage a variety of specialists supplier relationships.
What’s important is finding the firm that’s the perfect fit for your business. And that’s where this next set of tips comes in…
What to look for in a marketing agency in Dublin
Here are a few things you ought to consider when looking for a Dublin marketing agency:
- Your budget vs. the marketing agency’s costs: There’s no point in selecting an amazing Dublin marketing agency if your budgets and their costs are so far apart that you won’t be able to afford the support you need.
- The range of services you need vs. marketing agency’s offering: Just because a company says they are a marketing agency in Dublin doesn’t mean they automatically offer everything you need. Make sure you have a list prepared in advance and check that against each supplier.
- How the marketing agency staffs the services most important to you: Again, just because something is listed as a service on a Dublin marketing agency’s website doesn’t make it their specialists area. They may even outsource it because they don’t get asked for it very often. This isn’t always a problem, but if there’s a disconnect between the services you’ll need most often and what their team are best qualified to provide there may not be the best fit.
- Quality of work: A good Dublin marketing agency should be able to show you a portfolio of work that is well designed, neat, perfectly spelt and above all be able to talk you through the results they achieved for their client.
- Testimonials and references: It’s easily possible to put up a pretty website, presentation or brochure but actually be unreliable in your service delivery in real life. Make sure you speak to some real customers before you finally choose a Dublin marketing agency, to make sure they live up to their promises.
How to choose a branding agency Dublin
Choosing a Dublin branding agency has some things in common with the previous process, it is just more niche and refined as you are only looking at a single service area.
- The cost of working with that branding agency: There’s no point in selecting an amazing branding agency if you can’t even afford for them to create you a basic logo. Make sure you’ve thought beyond the initial identity creation and have budget to spare for developing and refreshing the brand too.
- A branding agency should be more than logos, colours and fonts: A good Dublin branding agency will offer you a deeper branding process than simply coming up with a pretty look and feel for your business. They should conduct market research if you haven’t already got these findings to hand. They should be able to provide sound marketing rationales for all their proposed creative directions. They should offer ongoing brand management, development and strategy services that allow your brand to be a valuable asset, generating revenue for the business rather than just giving you a presentable public face.
- Quality of branding work: Your chosen Dublin branding agency should be able to show you a portfolio of work that is well designed, features persuasive, stylish copy with no mistakes and above all be able to talk you through how that brand has delivered value for the client’s business.
- Testimonials and references: It’s easily possible to put up a pretty website, presentation or brochure but actually be unreliable in your service delivery in real life. Make sure you speak to some real customers before you finally choose a Dublin branding agency, to make sure they live up to their promises.
How to assess a advertising agency in Dublin
Dublin advertising agencies are renowned for putting on stylish, impressive pitches. But when you choose a firm to work with, you need more than a flashy presentation, you need to know they can really deliver effective creative and advertising services for your business. Here are a few pointers:
- A good advertising agency delivers effective advertising: All advertising agencies like to win awards for their work. It makes them look good to prospective clients and allows them to charge more for their services. However, often the most effective ads are not the ones that win the awards and your Dublin advertising agency should demonstrate an understanding of this. Effective advertising that delivers tangible revenue into the business always trumps an “award winning” piece that was too clever for its own good and therefore had little effect on sales.
- Dublin advertising agency costs: Advertising isn’t a one off cost, you’ll need to use these services time and time again. So whereas you might be able to justify increasing spend on the development of your brand, knowing that this is a one time investment with lesser costs to support it subsequently, for advertising you need to start with an agency that’s priced in a way that you can use it day to day over an extended period.
- Advertising results: Each Dublin advertising agency should be able to talk you through the results behind the pieces of the work in their portfolio, so you know you’re not just looking at pretty ads but ads that actually worked.
- Testimonials and references: It’s easily possible to put up a pretty website, presentation or brochure but actually be unreliable in your service delivery in real life. Make sure you speak to some real customers before you finally choose a Dublin advertising agency, to make sure they live up to their promises.
We hope this helps you in your search. And if you’d like to chat to us about whether we can help your business grow, of course we’d love to hear from you.