Managing Your Relationship With Your Online Marketing Service

Recently, I blogged about how to know when it’s time to outsource your online marketing, and how to choose the right company to handle the job. Now that you’ve selected the ideal company to handle your online marketing, here’s how to manage your relationship with them.

  • Share your goals. You’ve set goals and a budget; share that information with your online marketing company to make sure they are clear on what you want. Know what you want.
  • Learn what to expect. Find out what you can realistically expect from the company so your expectations aren’t out of proportion to reality. For instance, if you expect an SEO campaign to quadruple your number of website visitors overnight, you’re going to be disappointed; changes to a website’s SEO generally take a couple of months to pay off.
  • Put it in writing. Your outsourcing partner probably has standard contracts in place for projects like yours. Make sure to read it thoroughly and clarify anything you don’t understand. Just because it’s a standard contract doesn’t mean it can’t be modified; it never hurts to ask.
  • Create a marketing plan. In addition to a contract, you should work with your outsourcing company to develop a plan for what they’ll do and what role you’ll play.
  • Develop a communication plan. How will you communicate with your outsourcing partner? Will there be weekly conference calls, monthly status updates or “as-needed” emails? Know what to expect and what you are expected to do.
  • Keep up your end of the bargain. If you need to provide the online marketing company with things like marketing copy, logos or photos by a certain deadline, make sure you do it—otherwise, they can’t do their job.
  • Don’t micromanage them. Yes, you’re in control of your online marketing overall, but now that you’ve hired an online marketing company to help, step back and let them do their jobs. Otherwise, you’ll only get in the way.

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Rieva Lesonsky

Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at, follow her on Google+ and, and visit her website,, to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.