How To Prepare For Your Marketing Discovery Meeting

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What is a Marketing Discovery Meeting?

A marketing discovery meeting is a method agencies use to determine if the services they offer match what you, the client, need. You don’t want to waste time with a marketing agency that isn’t a good match for your business. Discovery meetings eliminate wasted time and determine fit early in the process. Don’t skip out on one – a well-run marketing discovery meeting saves time and resources for everyone.

As a client, expect to spend a lot of time answering questions. Agencies, on the other hand, will spend their time asking those questions, probing deeper, and working at determining if the services offered by the agency can help move the needle for you.

Most of all, a good agency will spend most of their time in a marketing discovery meeting listening to you. To make the most of your discovery meeting, we’re going to share what to expect, what to bring, and the information you should gain when the meeting is over.

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When Should I Expect a Marketing Discovery Meeting?

All agencies are a bit different, but generally, you can expect a discovery meeting to be the first touch you have with an agency or after a capabilities meeting.

Capabilities meetings happen when you want to know more about an agency and culminate with the agency presenting all their services to you. It is the flip side of a discovery meeting, although many times, a capabilities meeting morphs into a discovery meeting.

Marketing Discovery Meeting Questions

What Kind of Questions Should I Be Prepared to Answer?

To have a successful discovery meeting, some research needs to be done by both you and the agency. Coming prepared will help streamline the process. The types of questions asked vary based on the type of agency you’re meeting with, but in general, you can expect to answer questions like these: 
  • Tell us about your business.
  • Describe your best customer.
  • Where do your customers come from? Local, regional, www?
  • Describe the audience you are trying to reach.
  • What are your goals and expectations for marketing?
  • What are your top marketing challenges?
  • What marketing strategies have you tried?
  • Of what you tried, what worked? What didn’t?
  • Do you have specific agency services you’d like to try?
  • When working with other agencies, what did you like? What didn’t you like?
  • If the fit is right, when would you like to start?

Depending on the agency and the services you’re interested in, there might be more specific technical questions like these: 

  • Are you currently using analytics? If so, what platform(s)?
  • Are you using a tag manager? Which one?
  • What platform does your website run on?
  • Do you have full access and control of your website? If not, who does?
  • Do you have advertising pixels placed on your site?
  • Do you typically have landing pages devoted to each ad you run?

This might seem like a lot of questions, but don’t worry if you don’t know all the answers. The agency is determining what groundwork may need to be laid for a successful campaign. What’s more, a good marketing agency will have already conducted research and will know the answers to most of these questions. They may simply be looking for confirmation from you.

What Should You Bring to a Marketing Discovery Meeting?

The best thing you can do before a marketing discovery meeting is to refresh your memory about your past and present marketing efforts. As you do, take notes and bring those notes along with you to help the process. Other elements to bring include:

  1. Current marketing materials. Note whether you like them or you don’t like them. 

  2. Stats on leads and conversions from previous efforts with marketing channels noted. E.g., website, blog, social media, paid search, OOH (Out-of-Home), and so on.
  3. Current or most recent spend on each channel. 

Be Prepared to Discuss Scope and Budget

Expect to spend time talking about what you’ll do and what you expect the agency to do. To price services appropriately, an agency needs to understand the scope of what they’ll be doing. Perhaps you only want to work on a particular campaign or have staff in-house to handle all your creative work and landing pages. These are important elements to share when discussing scope.

Budget will largely determine many aspects of your marketing campaign. Not all strategies require high budgets, but some do. That’s why it’s important for the agency to know what you want to achieve, and what has and has not worked in the past. Expect to discuss:

  • Your current spend on marketing solutions beyond media spend. This might include tools and time spent on creative or landing page development.
  • How long a campaign will run. A $12k budget across a year is a much different situation than a $12k budget across a month.
  • What other areas, website, Google My Business listing, landing pages and so on must be involved? Who will handle them? What timeframe?

Looking at Your Business as a Whole

Finally, expect to cover some broad topics about your business. Stepping back and looking at your business wholly helps the agency uncover your strengths and weaknesses. A good agency will use this information to avoid building a strategy based on where your brand struggles.

If you struggle with responding to customers on Facebook in a timely fashion, a campaign promoting your customer service skills in the Facebook platform probably isn’t a good fit.

Bring answers to broad questions like these:

  • What are your business goals?
  • What do you do well?
  • What does your business struggle with or what’s an area that’s underperforming?
  • Who is your main competition?
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Post wrap up

That’s a Wrap! 

Marketing discovery meetings are a powerful way to determine if you and the agency you’re talking to are a good fit. Nobody wants to waste time with an agency that is unable to help achieve their marketing goals. With a little bit of research and some Q&A, you’ll walk away knowing that the agency has a good idea of the areas that need focus and, in the process, perhaps find some clarity yourself.

Are you ready to take the next step in marketing your business? Let’s get together for a marketing discovery meeting.

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