Content Marketing

How to Choose a Creative Agency in 3 Steps

There are three key factors you must use when measuring and choosing a creative agency, for both you and the agency to be successful.

Creative Agency Selection
Mathew Slavica

Mathew Slavica

Founder, Digital Stand (Sydney), Industry Keynote Speaker. Obsessed with helping our clients grow.

A creative agency is measured or should be by three key factors. As creative work is no longer subjective based on design or based on perception.

Creative agency performance is now intrinsically linked to the story the data tells us. And that story is happening in real-time.

Creative Agency Measurement Criteria.

There are three key measures we feel are the foundation of measuring creative performance on social and or digital platforms.

1. Your Key Demographic

First and foremost, a creative agency must understand your ideal demographic. Or the persona and personas most interested in your product and or service.

The best creative content starts with empathy. It starts with an understanding of your target market's needs, wants, desires, goals, and or pain points.

Who are we targeting and why are we targeting them? What problem are we solving for them or how are we enabling them? What language do they use to communicate? What do they know about our brand or not know about us?

Are they in the awareness, consideration, or decision stage?

Are we creating content for direct sales, or creating a funnel for later conversion?

Or for that matter are we thinking far more strategically, and thinking about our version of a viral loop. Where we acquire new leads, customers, and advocates at every stage of the process.

With the data currently available to us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and other social platforms. A creative agency can now deeply understand your demographic to a level that was previously impossible.

How many people can we target? Who is active on the platform? And part of the market are we trying to own?

With these social media marketing insights, a creative agency can start to create content that the consumer will respond to.

In essence, it takes the guesswork out of the process. It does not

replace the "creative" aspect of the content but informs it at a deeper level.

We no longer need to have subjective opinions about if this piece of creative improved the revenue line, or was it this one? We can tell in close to real-time, which piece of content pushed the needle.

This can then inform the rest of our content, provided we have set up multivariate testing correctly.

Multivariant Testing

And once we understand the creative that is the most effective in obtaining revenue growth. We can use this model to inform our broader creative strategy.


2. Native Content

The creative content itself must be native to the platform and medium it is using. It must show an understanding of how these platforms work, to be considered as genuine and authentic.

The three answers it must seek to address for our identified persona, are:

  1. Extrinsic - Is the message believable?
  2. Intrinsic - Does it matter to them? Is it something they need, and or want?
  3. Philosophically - Is it part of their story of how they see themselves?

As you would expect a creative agency which addresses these areas significantly improves the chance of success for any advertising campaign.

If we demonstrate a deeper understanding of our target market, by using their language, their pain points, we significantly increase the likelihood of a successful campaign.

However, an important point to note here is that the creative must be native to the platform.

Let me provide you with an example. A lot of creative agencies will create content that works well on Facebook, but then also choose Instagram as part of the advertising distribution channel.

This is, of course, is an easy option within the Facebook platform. However, what easy option ever works out?

Yes, this one does not either. The creative you use can, of course, be the same messaging and imaging across different social media platforms. Although if you want it to succeed, you must design it in the dimensions recommended by each of the social media platforms. Notice the different appearance below?

Of course, this is a lot more work. But let's consider the alternative for one second. We run an advertising campaign on Facebook, Instagram, and or LinkedIn using only one dimension. On Facebook, the campaign performs well, but on Instagram, it just does not work.

On this basis, we decide our audience, is not on Instagram and direct all our efforts towards Facebook! Leaving us with no alternative platform should this audience start to falter.

We made our decision on the wrong input and as a result, missed another potential channel because our creative was not native to the platform.

An experienced creative agency, that knows social media advertising will guide you through testing every platform for its effectiveness.

They will ensure each campaign and its associated content is native and optimised to the platform and audience.

This can often result in one type of creative working well on Instagram, and a different piece of content works well on Facebook.

It is further informing our approach not only on the creative but the creative that works best on each platform.

3. What is Data Telling Us?

Last but not least is performance. What is the live data telling us about the advertising content we have created and launched based on the above criteria?

Is our target market responding to it? And which content is our persona responding to the most? What content are they sharing and what content are they engaging?

Social media platforms offer close to real-time data performance metrics. Creative agency content is no longer subjective.

And this is one of the defining areas for any creative agency when it comes to social media advertising.

As we explored above, there may be times when one piece of creative performs well on one channel, but we need a different approach on another.

But let us take this example further. For the moment, let's assume your target demographic spans a couple of age brackets. For the moment, let's use the age range of 25-34 and 35-44. Have you ever stopped to think that someone in the younger demographic may respond to different creative than someone in the 35 years plus range?

Data allows us to dive a lot deeper into creative performance segmenting and adjusting based on feedback. By using data to inform our campaigns we all become better marketers.

You will know when you see an excellent creative agency because you will be having similar conversations. Or they will be expanding on the above line of thinking.

Using data and creative provides you with an unfair advantage for them and their clients.

Today's creative agency is using data to win for their clients. If you are interested in understanding more, you can contact us here. We are a full-service social media and creative agency based in Sydney.

If you have not already done so, please feel free to download the social media playbook below.

11 Key Social Media Mistakes


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