Questions Brands Should Answer Before Selecting A Marketing Agency


Questions Brands Should Answer Before Selecting A Marketing Agency

Here at AgencySparks we think a lot about how brands and agencies connect with each other and subsequently work together.

Before we make connections for brands/clients with potential agency partners, we like to understand the brand needs.

There are questions that on the surface would seem to be serving the agency, but by answering them, the client can ensure that their needs are better met:


  • Has the project been budgeted? What is the budget range?


  • Who on your team will be involved in the selection of the agency?


  • What is the nature of the project for which you need help?
  • What is the business driver that caused this project to be considered?


  • When are you looking to launch and complete the project?
  • Are there factors that could affect the timing of the project?

In addition to these key questions, we like to ask about desired outcomes, past agency relationships, and the selection process.

Answering these questions results in a better match with the right agency which ultimately helps solve the marketing challenges. We're just matching all the pieces to make the perfect puzzle. 


Marketers Toolbox - RocketReach


Marketers Toolbox - RocketReach

What is RocketReach?

RocketReach is a tool for lead generation that uses big data to access specific contact information.

Why is this tool helpful?

Sometimes heavy research is not enough to find every email, number, and person’s profile information. This tool is one of the most accurate email search engines that will save users’ time prospecting

How is it used?

Using the Google Chrome extension, the API accesses information from over 250 million professionals and six million companies from over 50 sites to provide the user. 

Who would benefit from using Owlmetrics?

RocketReach benefits anyone in sales outreach or lead generation.


Users can sign up for free but different pricing options offer additional features.

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Perfect Interview Questions to Fill Empty Marketing Roles


Perfect Interview Questions to Fill Empty Marketing Roles

Hiring a new candidate for a marketing role can be challenging. Sourcing qualified candidates and then assessing both their capabilities and compatibility with the team can be difficult. It is imperative to ask the right questions to ensure that the person is the best fit:

While some questions should be asked of any potential marketer, there are some unique attributes for each role:




Vice President of Marketing

Chief Marketing Officer

The VP of Marketing (VPM) is the bridge between director level marketers and the C-Suite. They work with and manage multiple marketing disciplines/departments to ensure the success of a project. VPMs must exhibit most of the attributes of the CMO in addition to a keen sense of responsibility and nobility, excellent communication skills, understanding of the multiple marketing departments and facets, decision making, and people skills.


Forbes listed Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) as the most “extreme” executives since they are ultimately in charge of driving marketing for the entire organization. CMOs need to be imaginative, innovative, unconventional, engaging, agile, outgoing, and have an extremely high emotional intelligence.


Director of Marketing

The Director of Marketing evaluates the consumer’s needs and caters the products/services and marketing strategy to the target audiences. Marketing Directors need to be as creative as the CMO/VPM, but require an eye for strategy and direction. The Director of Marketing must be results driven, a strategic thinker, and calm under pressure.


The top three roles will most likely hire roles for the categories below. Use the following marketing interview questions to form a solid marketing team.






Market Researcher

Brand Marketer

The data and marketing analysts must be skeptical, analytical, methodical, and synthetical. A skilled market researcher must communicate findings, connect data points, have the empathy to relate work to customers, and keep an open mind to eliminate any confirmation bias during research.  

The brand marketers represent the brand’s image. They are the product and brand managers and brand strategists who have a strong voice, understanding of, and passion for the brand. Brand marketers are organized and informed about the latest marketing trends and industry news. Their actions and strategies are led and supported by a blend of qualitative and quantitative data.



eCommerce/Email Marketer



Content Marketer

eCommerce marketers are data-driven but also have the creativity to message appropriately to prospective and current customers. They need to show their eagerness to learn and adapt.

Content marketers are the representatives of the brand who create the copy seen by the public. These digital, content, and social media marketers must exhibit creative, strategic, and analytical thinking in addition to witty/humorous and strong writing skills.




Despite the different responsibilities of the marketing roles, there are some common questions that should be asked of any potential candidate. The goal is to assess emotional intelligence, agility, creativity, strategic thought, and communication skills for all marketing candidates.

 Marketers start in an entry-level position before becoming a Director of Marketing or a Chief Marketing Officer. Here is a visual representation of the marketing career path and the evolution of job titles. 

Marketing Interview Questions

  1. Why do you love marketing?
  2. How hands on have you been with your past companies’ marketing initiatives?
  3. How would you describe our company’s brand voice? What aspects would you change?
  4. What is your approach for building a brand?
  5. What KPIs do you always include in a marketing dashboard?
  6. How do you keep your skills sharp?
  7. What are your personal values and how would you apply them to our company?
  8. What brand has been inspirational to you from a marketing perspective and why?
  9. Describe how you leveraged data in a past role to inform marketing?
  10. Knowing what you know already about our company, where would you begin to make changes in our marketing approach?
  11. What role within your marketing team is most crucial to you and why?
  12. What creative in a previous role are you most proud of and why?
  13. Describe a marketing “blunder” you made and how you made up for it.
  14. How do you see content creation fitting into your strategy here?
  15. How do you go about mentoring your team?
  16. How would you do this job? Where would you begin? What are your priorities?
  17. Which marketing channel do you think is most important to our company and why?
  18. When was a time you solved a problem using an unorthodox method. What was the problem, what was your approach, and how did it work out?
  19. What is a potential yet unexpected threat to the marketing industry? What would you do about the threat?
  20. How would you explain a complex issue or change in process to a client or colleague?
  21. What is the benefit of having a strong social media presence for a brand? Would you ever advise against having a social media strategy? Why?
  22. How do you think you can use the current advances in the marketing industry to impact our business?
  23. Tell me a little bit about yourself. Now tell me about yourself using our brand’s voice.
  24. Tell me about a time you had to get super creative to solve a big problem.

During the interviews, ask yourself if the candidate has:

  1. A strong sense of self and an ability to pinpoint personal strengths and weaknesses

  2. A thorough understanding of your business and exhibits the business’ values

  3. Excellent people skills, consideration for others, and communicates efficiently

From the highest level at CMO to the entry-level content creator, all marketers should be curious and driven, have a strong sense of emotional intelligence, pay attention to detail, and extremely collaborative. When conducting a marketing job interview, make sure the candidate has these fundamental traits to ensure a successful, goal-oriented marketing team.

Candidates can impress their interviewers by asking questions such as:

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  • What metrics will be used to measure my success?
  • How do you envision my role contributing to the success of the organization?
  • What have been the most successful recent marketing programs and were there any that flopped?
  • What are the biggest recent marketing challenges that the team has faced?
  • What roadblocks do you see me having to tackle in the role, should I get it?

How does a marketer at an entry level nail the interview? Practice these questions, study the company, and have a strong sense of your personal brand. Are you currently a marketer at an entry-level position and want to climb the ladder to become a CMO or marketing director? Check out the Marketing Career Path.


Jump on the Straight "Fire" Live Video Phenomenon


Jump on the Straight "Fire" Live Video Phenomenon

There was a time when everyone knew Carol Burnett was the queen of comedy and that Johnny Carson was THE man. That was a time when there were fewer channels and re-runs weren’t a thing, so everyone was watching the same thing at the same time for the first time. 

That was a long time ago. Since then, TV and video have exponentially evolved. Video is insanely accessible to the point where adults are watching up to five hours of video a day - but not necessarily in the living room with the family gathered around. 

YouTube plays a huge part in video “evolution,” but so does mobile devices, broadband proliferation, and the smartphone. Since the creation of YouTube, where most videos are easily accessed, a new phenomenon has arisen: Live Streaming video. 

Live video was not born yesterday. In fact, the first live stream video app, Meerkat launched in 2015 (and, since then, is now deceased). Recently multiple social platforms' streaming services like YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, and Twitter have capitalized on the “live” phenomenon and brands are taking full advantage of the benefits. 

Why Go “Live?” Because, it’s “F.I.R.E.”

FRESH- The “live” video brings back the novelty “must-see-TV” feeling that pre-DRV TV once had. A “first ever” exclusive look into content at a specific time where no one knows what is going to happen next can be exciting. The unexpectedness increases consumer engagement which increases potential likes, shares, comments, and impressions. 

INTERACTIVE - Live videos are as close to face-to-face content without a brand being physically present. Streaming enables real-time commentary and interaction with viewers. When a consumer feels involved in a brand’s process and content creation, their excitement leads to brand loyalty and consumer engagement. 

REAL - The live broadcasts are real-time videos where anything can happen and nothing is completely planned. Brands use live streaming to show the “making of” or backstage efforts of an event or operation, lifting a curtain to reveal their authentic true identity. This potentially vulnerable tactic humanizes the brand, thus builds a trusting relationship with followers.

EXCLUSIVE - Live streaming apps like the trivia game HQ are taking the world by storm. By having a scheduled “tune-in” time, HQ creates a shared experience with their users. Followers plan their evenings around this specific time and feel the thrill of competing for a limited time offered reward. 

AgencySparks uses the "Marketing Mindset" series to grow followers and provide marketers with marketing insights. The video series is recorded on Facebook Live, which tends to get more impressions and reactions from followers than the standard uploaded video, then downloaded to YouTube as evergreen content. 

Brands should leverage social media platform streaming, regardless if it is Twitter’s Periscope, Facebook Live, Instagram Live, YouTube Live. According to Neil Patel, 63% of people from the ages 18 to 34 regularly create or watch live-streaming content. Realtors’ Social Media Strategist, Marki Ryhal, found that consumers are watching live streaming videos three times more than uploaded videos. People want to be shocked, involved, and excited. That is why live stream videos are predicted to grow into a $70 billion industry by 2021.  

Live streaming is a whole new beast for social media marketers to tackle. Entertaining the consumer and capturing their interest is not the only benefit from investing in live videos. Viewers’ data collected from live videos inform future marketing campaigns and lead outreach strategies. 

Going “live” is insanely cheap and expectations of consumers, at this point, are low. Just about any brand can leverage broadcasting live videos. 


Marketers Toolbox - Zencastr


Marketers Toolbox - Zencastr

What is Zencastr?

Zencastr is a podcast tool for long-distance interviews.

Why is this tool helpful?

This tool allows marketers to record high quality interviews with remote guests. The tool simplifies recording and uploading to make the podcast process convenient and easy. Zencastr also accounts for bad connections and recording mishaps by offering a backup storage plan and connection fallback plan.

Listeners are guaranteed an easy-listen and are more likely to become a returning subscriber. Increasing the engagement of the consumer will increase followers and eventually could generate leads. Without the hassle of multiple recording steps, guests are also more likely to return as interviewees. This builds a base of trusted experts and credible episodes. 

How is it used?

Zencastr records each independent voice and offers a soundboard for live editing. After the recording is finished, they are automatically delivered to the user’s Dropbox because of the cloud integration. The user has access to additional features like post-production editing to enhance the audio quality.

Who would benefit from using Zencastr?

Anyone who wants to start a podcast with guests. The guest does not even have to leave their home and can easily participate.


 Zencastr pricing options for high quality podcast recordings. 


The Powerful Marketing Superhero Within You


The Powerful Marketing Superhero Within You

The Dark Knight, Black Panther, The Justice League, The Avengers. Heroes come in all shapes and sizes. They do not always wear a cape or a mask, but, instead, dedicate their time to making a difference.

By advertising for helpful products and services, marketers aim to improve the lives of their target consumers. Marketers, in one way or another, are heroes.

What are some of super powers these marketing heroes possess?

Sonic Hearing

The ability to listen and understand is a power all marketers must possess. Nothing of value can be produced without the ability to hear the needs and wants of the consumer. If there is no consumer, there is no business.

Optimize this power of listening by being empathetic.

Super Speedster

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The marketing industry, technology, and consumer preferences are constantly changing. Marketers must act quickly to adapt to certain trends, social media platforms, and technology like artificial intelligence and virtual reality.

Optimize this power by adapting a willingness to accept a change in direction. Keep up with changes in technology and update process systems regularly.


The sorcerer possesses the ability to create magic out of thin air. Their creative campaigns attract consumer interest, increasing engagement and following.

Optimize this power by making the unthinkable choice, encouraging innovation and inspiring creative thought.


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Information is available everywhere but only this hero knows how to make it useful. X-ray evaluates the consumer and determines WHO they are.

Optimize this power by using tools like Google Analytics and Lucky Orange to track the consumer’s engagement with the company. Segment the audience based on their interests and target specific groups with personalized messaging.

Telepathic Teller

The telepathic marketer already knows what the consumer wants today based on previous data, but can predict their behavior in the future. Before the consumer even states what they want, the telepathic marketer has a campaign and product perfectly designed for the target market.

Optimize this power by learning everything about the current state of the consumer’s behavior and mind. Become an expert at predictive marketing.

Gadget Guru

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The Gadget Goer is specifically handy with the “web,” but can tackle any new gadget thrown their way. They are masters at work-arounds and skillfully back-up the team with the most up-to-date tech to make them look good.

Optimize this power by investing in new tools such as the ones we feature in the Marketers Toolbox. Become proficient at available tech like mobile and embrace the digital world.


One decision, careless campaign can jeopardize the reputation of a brand. The healer specializes in public relations - managing crisis and rebuilding a tarnished brands’ reputation.

Optimize this power by having a clear understanding of the brand’s voice and values when launching marketing campaigns. Be aware of the necessary steps needed in case re-branding is in the cards.




To become an invincible marketer, a marketer must possess or have a team possess all of these powers. AgencySparks works with a number of agencies who have some, if not all, of these super powers.

 AgencySparks Marketing superheroes strengths in the marketing industry. 


Marketers Can Predict the Future and it is Wild


Marketers Can Predict the Future and it is Wild

Everything is new at the beginning of a relationship. Quirky habits have yet to be discovered and preferences are unknown. As time wears on, we learn just about everything about our partner. Just like a romantic relationship, brands owe it to their consumers to know their preferences, habits, and behaviors.

Access to data and analytics play a role in equipping a brand with the necessary knowledge to cater messaging and predict trends. Predictive marketing is gathering previous consumer behaviors, using statistical algorithms, and machine learning to predict future outcomes and inform new strategies.

Predictive marketing improves the brand-consumer relationship. Since the digital age has sped up processes, consumers expect personalized products that are instantly delivered.  

How does predictive marketing help the marketer?

Improve Lead Generation

Predictive marketing fuses the sales-marketing relationship by supplying the sales team with high quality leads. Analytics determine interested prospects’ behavior and tendencies. Sales can then become more productive and focus their energy on capturing and nurturing these leads.

Segment Personas

A consumer wants to be the brand’s priority. The brand can show they care by using the collected data to segment each consumer into a specific group or demographic. After establishing detailed personas of the consumers, optimize each target audience by tailoring a personalized (but not creepy) marketing message.

Shape Future Products

Gathering and tying together all of the consumers’ data lets marketers anticipate buying behaviors and the popularity of certain trends. Future projects, marketing campaigns, and strategies can be altered depending on this newfound knowledge. After all, history tends to repeat itself.

Predictive marketing shows the brand’s investment in the “relationship” and increases consumer trust and loyalty. In fact, according to Salesforce, conversion rates increase about 22% with predictive marketing methods.

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Using big data to predict consumer behaviors is not a new concept. Forward looking analytics - where artificial intelligence sends out an automated and personalized message at the right time in the consumer buying process - is where predictive marketing is headed.

Certain brands have already gotten a jump start advancing their human-machine marketing efforts. This Adweek article outlines Amazon’s current offerings - Prime shipping and automatic replenishment - and articulates the future roadmap. Soon enough, Google’s “push notifications” will become proactive (perhaps ordering you a Lyft or Uber at just the right time). Data analyzing the user’s tendencies will become proactive and predict what is best for the consumer before the consumer says anything.


Marketers Toolbox - Asana


Marketers Toolbox - Asana

What is Asana?

Asana is a web and mobile project management application that helps teams stay connected and on track of tasks.  

Why is this tool helpful?

More goals are achieved when progress and productivity can be tracked and employees held accountable for tasks. 

How is it used?

The platform allows users to visualize the standing of projects - whether or not they are completed or in progress - with lists and calendars. Employees can also prioritize their work and report on their productivity as well as receive feedback and comments from superiors.

Who would benefit from using Asana?

Any team could benefit. Small or large projects can be assigned, monitored, shared, and approved using this tool. This simplifies and organizes the project planning and execution process.


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Marketer Speed-Dating Fuels Connections that Last


Marketer Speed-Dating Fuels Connections that Last

Roses are red, Violets are blue, We connect marketers, That much is true.

As matchmakers for brands and agencies and true masters of connection, Valentine’s Day is by far the most important holiday for AgencySparks. We celebrated by hosting one of our ever-popular Marketer’s Breakfasts.

Unlike past Marketer’s Breakfasts with themes such as customer experience, creativity in the workplace, or data measurement - this particular event was focused on “speed-dating.” 

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Esteemed brands such as Georgia Pacific, Honey Baked Ham, United Healthcare, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), among many others were courted by our well-vetted marketing agencies for five minutes at a time. With a precise elevator pitch, some silly conversation starters, and thoroughly entertaining conversations, brand and agency representatives networked in rapid succession. Although speed dating can seem “forced,” attendees described the event as “easy-going.” The format  encouraged natural conversations with people who may not have met otherwise.

This proved successful. Andy Monfalcone, the Senior Brand Director for Serta Simmons Bedding, said that AgencySparks “takes the ‘work’ out of networking.” Others stated that the event was great for networking because of conversations that were “relevant, helpful, and easy.”

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Given only five minutes to talk to a business client at any moment, what would you say? What would you do?

As a representative of a brand or agency, it is important to simplify the needs, strengths, and weaknesses of your company.

Agencies - it is not about you. Your job is to make the client feel important. Spend 60 seconds on your pitch. Be sure to include key work you have done and problems you have solved for clients. Then spend the next four minutes LISTENING. Does your agency actually fit the needs of the client?  

Clients - Know what needs to be fixed. Be open minded and listen. Selecting an agency that will actually meet your demands is challenging - listen for capabilities and experience that is relevant to your brand.  Also check for chemistry, since this agency could become an extension of your marketing team.

Brands and agency people were pleased with the opportunity to speak with like-minded influencers. Alan Magee, the Director of Brand Marketing for Moe’s Southwest Grill, stated “AgencySparks takes the time to curate the right people in the room for real conversations that really help marketers.” Moira Vetter, CEO of agency partner Modo Modo, agreed that AgencySparks events bring together the “real brand decision-makers and thought leaders in Atlanta.”

Jennifer Morgan, the Manager of Marketing at the High Museum of Art may have summed it up best when she stated “AgencySparks is a brilliant connector of people.”