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3 Things Marketing Agencies Should Tell You About Marketing, But Don't

By Danny Starr on Sep 13, 2016 9:57:00 AM

I am fortunate enough to have worked on both the agency and the client sides of the marketing coin.  This means that I have been on both sides of the conversation around what it takes to deliver marketing that works. 

Marketing agencies like to make it seem like they have all the answers and clients like to pretend that they have all the power to make decisions.  Both sides think that the other side has it better.  Clients think agencies sit around spit-balling ideas and having Nerf gun wars and marketing agencies think clients spend all of their time waiting until the last minute to say that they need something done. 

Well, I'm going to tell you 3 things marketing agencies should tell you about marketing, but don't. 

1. Marketing Is Difficult

2. We Don't Have All Of The Answers

3. How to Save Money

Let me take a few seconds and unpack each of these statements.


1. Marketing Is Difficult

Marketing agencies like to make you think that marketing has gotten so complicated that there is no way you could do any of this stuff on your own.  The truth is that doing marketing well is difficult but getting most of the way there yourself is probably a lot easier than it used to be. 

The proliferation of tools like Hubspot (this post was written in Hubspot), Unbounce and even website platforms like Wordpress have made it easier than ever to market your product or service.  You just need to find the motivation and know when you need to bring in outside help – that's the hard part.


2. We Don't Have All Of The Answers

Who likes to admit that they don't know something?  The truth is that marketing is a dynamic and fast-paced field with constant updates and changes.  Thirty years ago, you only needed to worry about a few things: what stores are my products in, what do my newspaper ads look like and how many people are lined up at the cash register. 

Modern marketing involves online and offline tactics, two-way communication channels that let you connect your brand directly to the consumer and more.  Good marketing agencies know what they know, know what they don't know and are willing to say "I don't know, but let me find out for you". 


3. How To Save Money

Effective marketing isn't always cheap  but it doesn't have to cost as much as a Honda Civic.  If you and your agency don't have the kind of relationship where you can be discussing pricing in an open and honest way, then perhaps you should be looking for a new marketing agency.

Good marketing agencies will be able to justify pricing and should have the knowledge, track record and/or results to back up what they are charging for the work they are doing for you.  If aren't sure about what you are being charged for, ask.  Afterall, what's the harm?

Marketing is a process that results in sales revenue.  Marketing agencies like to make it seem like what they do is magic but the reality is that it's just a process. 

"Art resides in the quality of doing, process is not magic". 

- Charles Eames

If you'd like to know more about what a marketing agency can be doing for you, contact us


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Topics: Marketing Agencies

Danny Starr

Danny Starr

Danny Starr the Director of Marketing Strategy at Cyan. He has been working in marketing since 2001. He spends his free time with his wife Kirsten, their two sons, and their dog Murray.