We’ve all told a little porky pie before Sometimes for the greater good, sometimes not. But, when it comes to the Digital Marketing world, honesty and transparency are vital to ensuring happy employees and clients, successful campaigns, and a positive reputation.

So on this Tell The Truth day, how do you spot when a digital marketing agency might be being flexible with the truth?

Some things to look out for include:

Bad promises

Agencies cannot guarantee that they will be able to achieve the best results for you, neither can they guarantee that you will be ranked no. 1 on Google! No one can 100% control how you rank on Google as that is the point of their algorithm. It is all about good marketing and giving your visitors the correct information. So if an agency promises this, they’re lying and can in fact cause long term damage to your Google rankings by trying to get you to number 1, which can cost you again to correct. Overly ambitious promises will only lead to disappointment and wasted budgets. Furthermore, broken promises lead to distrust, with some marketers trying to wiggle their way out of promises they’ve gone back on. This can range from small things such as tricking people into attending an exclusive live webinar that won’t be available online afterwards, to only then send the webinar to people anyway. The other extreme is building many poor backlinks to your site or using other outdated methods for ranking your site. These can see some short term results, only to see penalties and loss further down the line.


Money-driven focus

A lying marketer can show characteristics of only wanting to achieve a financial profit, with no subsequent genuine interest in your business. Alarm bells should also ring if the agency constantly refers to how much profit they’ve made, and how you can become a millionaire thanks to them.


Not telling you what they are doing

Do you know the work they will carry out or are they hiding this behind some Secret sauce? Are they open about the methods they use, or do they show you full reports or just a download from Google Analytics? These are all evidence that the agency are being shady.
If an agency is doing the right things and working hard for you, they shouldn’t be afraid to tell you what they have done. They shouldn’t be afraid of you learning about digital marketing and potentially being able to do it for yourself. You wouldn’t hire an agency if you wanted to do it yourself.

Honesty at SGM

We spoke to our Managing Director, Ant, to get his view on honesty within digital agencies.

Honesty and transparency are the foundation for all solid relationships, Ant says,
External dishonesty always gets found out, and when internal, breeds a culture of distrust which in turn affects the whole agency and taints the good stuff they’re doing.
To combat this, we supply our clients with full digital reports every month for complete transparency. The clients own their work, from the first analysis document to the ongoing updates and strategies. We are keen advocates of transparent documentation as it is the sharing and collaboration with our clients that is the key to our success.

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