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Hiring a Marketing Agency. Retainer vs. Project?

A good marketing agency will take your business goals and the resources in their arsenal and put them together to maximize your marketing efforts no matter what the scope of your contract. But how do you know if choosing to hire a marketing agency on a retainer or a project basis is the right choice? Use some of our top takeaways from each to determine which contract type is right for your business.  



 There are many benefits for hiring an agency on a retainer basis. Your marketing agency will be made up of experienced individuals that are skilled in each area of marketing so instead of hiring one individual that will handle your marketing efforts, you are getting an entire team of experts You’ll not only have an expert team at your fingertips, but they will be intimate with your brand to ensure it is presented cohesively and consistently across platforms. Whether you need to strategize your marketing efforts, have something designed quickly, or have updates to your brand or marketing materials, this team will ensure it is done for you as you need it.  


Another pro of a retainer is that a marketing agency will get the chance to know you and really understand your business goals. Over time, strategy will come naturally to both of you as your working relationship grows. You’ll likely get the same team members dedicated to your account over the life of the retainer as well, so there is comfort in knowing that the processes and understanding of your brand will remain the same.  



 Hiring a marketing agency on a project basis is perfect if that is exactly what you need: a project. Additionally, if you are on a limited budget, this may also be the option for you. Paying a one-time fee will allow you to maximize your budget on the marketing items on the top of your list. Another bonus of hiring on a project basis is to see how the marketing agency performs based on your business needs. Using a project as a test run will help you decide if an agency is a good fit for you and your business.  


A downside of hiring only on a project basis is that you may lose some consistency from project to project, especially if they are not completed back-to-back. The likelihood of having new team members on your account, even with the same agency, is greater so you may run into a small learning curve when at the beginning of a new project as if you were starting over. Additionally, you may find that there is a break in pricing for retainer contracts versus paying only on a project basis. 


In the end, whether you choose a marketing agency for a retainer or a project, it is not always about the money. Either way, you will be getting an experience team of experts on your side, but you will also be forming a working relationship with your agency. Make sure you are comfortable with the work product and values that your marketing agency provides and that they have a solid understanding of your brand and business goals.  



Check Out Our Marketing Agency Resources and These Posts Too: 


Know Your Goals When Hiring a Marketing Agency 


What Do You Mean by Marketing? And Other Questions You Should be Asking a Marketing Agency 


You Get What You Pay For: Cost Benefit of Hiring a Marketing Agency 


What This Marketing Agency Can Dfor You