The word transparency gets thrown around a lot these days, but what does it mean in terms of your relationship with an Internet marketing company? You want your digital marketing firm to be upfront with you regarding all aspects of their activities. That doesn’t mean that you have to become a marketing expert, but it does mean that you can insist on your agency sharing information with you, and you will then need to take on the responsibility of storing that information, should you need it. Let’s take a look at some common areas of concern between an Internet marketing company and a client, and how you can build a transparent relationship from day one.

1) Site changes log: Top agencies keep track of changes they make to clients’ sites. This is good practice not only for allowing clients to know what changes have taken place, but also for the agency to track these changes, as well. This is especially helpful when trying to solve an issue that is causing a barrier to indexing or a drop in site traffic.

2) Shared editorial calendars: All content that is created needs to be approved by clients before it goes live; that is common practice. Shared editorial calendars allow clients to follow the progress of content marketing campaigns. Agencies and clients can also then review what has worked and what hasn’t, so they can agree on new content initiatives.

3) Shared link reports: This is really important from the client’s perspective because the client can then track the accumulation of links over time. The agency can explain how the process works and how the accrual of links sometimes takes weeks or months. The client can double check the links to ensure they are relevant and don’t come from any low quality sites.

4) Comprehensive list of project management, email accounts, social, and other logins used to run account: These can easily get buried in emails. Ask your Internet marketing company to provide them on a secure project management sheet that you both have access to. There’s nothing more frustrating than being locked out of logins to your own accounts. One word of caution: Access is great, but if you don’t understand some of the accounts, ask the agency. Use care when reviewing information to ensure that nothing gets altered or mistakenly deleted.

5) Meeting notes: It’s likely that you keep your own meeting notes when you meet with your agency. Ask them to forward their list of to-dos after meetings so you can compare it with what you have in your notes. This is a good way to ensure everyone is on the same page.

6) When your engagement ends, then what? Some clients find an Internet marketing company that they love and they stay with them for years. Others may wish to move on. Ask your firm what the protocol is for ending the relationship; i.e., information sharing that will help you move on to the next company, if you choose to do so. If you follow steps 1-5 above, you should be in pretty good shape should you wish to move on.

All of the above items are some of the ways agencies can live up to their promise of transparency and superior customer service. Organically serves the Gatlinburg area and national customers. We believe in transparency and putting client communication first. Talk to us today and let’s begin your journey to great ROI from your online marketing.