For the past 3 weeks I have been quite sick and it has been incredibly hard to be able to work at a pace that is acceptable in my business. Fortunately for me, the team has been running seamlessly and have continued to grow and prosper.

Due to our inherent need for a number of new positions to be filled due to our high growth company, we have to be very careful what clients we take on for now and the future.

As a business we are changing and evolving in a way that is going to change the way people use marketing services.

So when we take on a new client, it is as much us interviewing them as it is them interviewing us. A good culture fit from both directions means that our company will prosper but most importantly, our clients will be more successful from the association and our efforts.

It's really hard being an entrepreneur. It's impossible to understand how much pressure entrepreneurs go through particularly in the early stages of their businesses.

When an entrepreneur starts a business they usually have a budget in mind. Then no matter how hard they try to keep that budget in tact, it always goes over. It's not too dissimilar to building a house.

When a business is launched, we all expect miracles but rarely do they happen. If you open the doors to a shop, rarely do people just flock in. It takes a lot more than that and namely a good brand, reputation of owners and marketing.

More than anything in the world, everyone at Marketing Eye wants to be successful. We want for our brand to take over the world of small to medium sized business marketing and transform the way it is done. 

That cannot happen without change and innovation. 

While we grow it is essential that we build both a team that has the potential to grow with us, and clients that understand our offering and are capable of working collaboratively with us to ensure that they reach their marketing goals.

Next time you are meeting with a marketing company, think about these things:

  1. Regardless of whether you do business with them or not, you want to use your time to create positive word of mouth marketing. You want them to want to work with you even if you don't want to work with them. 
  2. Pitching your business to a marketing agency even though they need to also be pitching to you, allows you to constantly refine your pitch to different audiences and improve how your team interact in a pitch.
  3. Understand what you want out of a marketing company. Be careful that you don't seem like you are all over the place, because as a marketing agency, we know that if you cannot clearly articulate what you want, we are unable to meet your objectives. It's a recipe for disaster.
  4. Never bag your previous agency. Relationships don't always work out, but usually it takes two to tango. Let go of the negative experience you may have had and focus on what you really want to achieve out of working with a new agency. What are your goals? What worked previously and how can you use the experience that you had before to have a better experience in the future.
  5. Know your vision and how to communicate it.
  6. If you are a control freak like many of us entrepreneurs seem to be; understand what role you play in the success of your marketing outcomes. Sometimes you do need to leave it in the hands of people who have the experience to make a difference to your business.
  7. Don't brag about how much money you have to spend. It's the first sign that you are full of shit. By all means communicate a budget, but please never talk about how your business is going to be a $100 million company in 3 years when you just started it yesterday. Unless you are Mark Zuckerberg - you just come across as a knob.
  8. Remember that if you were to choose the marketing company you are interviewing, they will be part of your team. They will guide your marketing efforts and from time to time, there may be things you don't see eye to eye on. Ultimately, you are the client and they will do as you want them to do, but beware that if they do do that, and it fails, it is your responsibility, not theirs.
No marketing company wants to work with a company that has no vision and no clear direction in which they would like to head. Often entrepreneurs come to marketing companies because they need advice or are not sure what to do with marketing. Make sure you really like the person you are about to do business with and can see yourself working with them long term. If for some reason you don't agree on something, make sure you are able to understand the facts from each persons perspective and be open to resolution. 

Try not to "blame" others and know that we are all human and can make mistakes. It's how fast we fix them that counts.

And always, always, work with the nice, kind and reasonable people as this makes your work life much more enjoyable.
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Mellissah Smith

Mellissah Smith is a marketing expert with more than 20 years experience. Having founded and built two successful marketing companies internationally, she is well recognized as a industry thought leader and innovator. Mellissah started her career working with technology and professional services firms, primarily in marketing, public relations and investor relations, positioning a number of successful companies to list on the various Stock Exchanges around the world. She is a writer, technology developer and entrepreneur who shares her thoughts and experiences through blogs and written articles published in various media outlets. Brag sheet: #2 marketer to follow on Twitter (2003), Top 150 Marketers to Follow (2015), Top 10 innovative marketers (2014), 60K+ followers on Twitter with 97% authentic.

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