From options to opportunities: How to choose the ideal Performance Marketing agency

Author Dan Lifton 6 min read time

If you didn’t know this already, having a strong online presence is crucial for the success of any business. However, navigating the complex world of Performance Marketing as part of the wider digital marketing strategy can be challenging. In just the last 24 months, there have been more changes than in my previous 5 years of working in this industry.

Whether it’s Performance Max and the rise of AI and automation, the iOS 14 update or the rise of TikTok, everything is changing as we know it. So it’s never been more important to have a team that keeps their finger on the pulse and are proactively approaching and understanding this change. You can read more about the pro’s of working with an agency, here. 

That’s where a reputable Performance Marketing agency comes in. A skilled agency can help a business develop effective strategies, boost brand visibility, and drive real business growth. But with countless agencies out there, how does a business find and select the right one? In this blog post, we’ll explore the key steps involved in finding and selecting the perfect agency partner for your business.

A person looking at performance marketing data on a laptop

Have you set your business goals?

Before beginning the search for an agency, it’s vitally important to have a clear understanding of your business goals and what you want to achieve working with an agency partner. This could be generating more revenue, increasing marketing qualified leads, building brand awareness or breaking into a new market. Whatever the goal may be, make sure you have clarity on these and it will help you align your requirements with the expertise offered by different agencies.

What services do you need from an agency?

Every Performance Marketing agency will have its own strengths. This could be strategy, campaign planning or even best in-class reporting and dashboarding. It’s important to look for agencies that specialise in the specific services that align with your goals stated above. Review their portfolios, case studies and client testimonials to assess their track record and the results they’ve achieved for businesses similar to yours. And if you have contacts for the brands they have worked with, there’s nothing better than a personal recommendation.

Do they have experience in your industry?

Whilst not always essential, industry experience is a valuable asset when it comes to deciding on an agency partner. But what are the benefits of having the sector experience? The agencies who are able to show that they have worked with similar companies in your industry understand the unique challenges and dynamics at play. Therefore they are much more likely to have insights into your target audience, competitors and a playbook for effective strategies to drive growth and success based on the business objectives that have been set.

What are they like at communicating?

The key to a successful client-agency relationship is communication and collaboration. During the process of selecting an agency, pay particular attention to how agencies are communicating with you. Are they responsive, transparent, and proactive in addressing your queries? Do they understand your business and ask relevant questions? Agencies that value open and regular communication are much more likely to not only achieve your business objectives, but will also be much more proactive in managing your account.

What are the values of the agency?

Finding an agency who has the skills and services to match what you need as a business is one half of the decision process. The other important element is to understand the culture and values of the agency. Does it align with your own culture? Can you see yourselves working with this agency? Would your team want to be on weekly calls with these people? These are all important questions that need to be answered. Finding a strong cultural fit between your business and the agency will foster collaboration, trusting relationships and long-term success.

Does their pitch answer the brief?

After you’ve found the agencies you want as part of the process, it’s time to create the brief and share this with the agencies ahead of the pitch. This stage is vitally important to understand how the agency has interpreted your brief. Does it match your business goals? Is what they are suggesting feasible based on the budgets and your knowledge of the industry. Once you’ve reviewed all of the proposals, proposed fees etc it’s then about understanding whether you got the “excitement” factor from the pitch and did it seem like they wanted to work with your business.

Are you asking the right questions to the agency?

You can find our recommended questions to ask a Performance Marketing agency here. But before you make the final decision and select an agency partner, you should have a list of questions that you have had clearly answered which give you full confidence in the decision you are making. These should address the technical skills, the account management skills and the client success stories they have previously highlighted to you.

As you can see, finding and selecting the right agency has many elements to ensure the right decision is made for your business. By identifying your goals, assessing the agency expertise and their values and making sure you are asking the right questions through the process, will ensure you make an informed decision that aligns with your overall business objectives. Remember, selecting the perfect agency is an investment in your business’s growth and online success. Take your time, do thorough research, and choose wisely.

We also recently discussed how to select the right agency in more detail on our podcast. Listen on Spotify here, or watch the video on Youtube.

To find out if Overdrive Digital are the right Partner Agency for you, arrange to speak to a member of our team today.


Dan has been working in Paid Media for 5+ years, and has extensive experience in managing strategies and campaigns both in-house and agency side, meaning he knows the best of both worlds.