Behdad Jamshidi, the founder of CJAM Marketing based in Vancouver, BC, has developed expertise on how to find the best marketing agencies for US-based businesses in any niche. After consulting for over 500+ businesses as a sales engineer for a major Canadian telecom company, he found that marketing is the key element to businesses growing, scaling, and retaining market share. He shared some of his valuable insights and the many marketing challenges businesses face.
According to Behdad, the biggest challenge for businesses in the world of marketing is being overwhelmed by the illusion of choice. But the reality is that many marketing agencies simply cannot deliver on the outcomes they promise. After vetting over 641+ marketing agencies, Behdad maintains that he would personally never work with 85% of the agencies and partners he has interviewed. This scarcity of skills makes it incredibly challenging for businesses to find the right agency that can help them achieve their marketing goals.
And what about finding just one agency to handle all of your marketing needs? Impossible – Behdad has seen it firsthand. One agency cannot execute all aspects of marketing well. You need multiple partners for different skill sets. Picking a single partner who is right for your business is hard enough, but having to pick four, for example, is infinitely more difficult and time-consuming. CJAM Marketing has done all the work for you, Behdad explains. He has tested, observed, and questioned hundreds of agencies and hand-picked only a chosen few who are skilled experts in their field.
Another obstacle to their own success that businesses face is not adopting a coherent marketing strategy early enough. In Behdad’s experience, businesses often struggle to build an organized marketing strategy because they do not have in-house marketing expertise. This means they launch marketing campaigns that lack focus and a long-term strategy, costing them money and opportunities. To avoid these mistakes, businesses need to educate themselves on the basics of marketing or seek help from a reputable agency or a marketing broker like Behdad.
Businesses also struggle with understanding how much marketing should cost or what it takes to run successful campaigns on certain channels. Unfortunately, this means some businesses end up getting taken advantage of by agencies charging for subpar work. For example, Behdad explains that most Search Engine Optimization (SEO) campaigns cost between $3-5K. As another example, businesses can expect to pay a retainer of about $8-10K for organic TikTok strategies and ads. It is important for businesses to do their research and understand the effort and nuances involved in different marketing channels, as well as the costs associated with each.
So what should businesses look for when vetting an agency? Behdad recommends that you look for experience, specialization, and results. You should ask for case studies and results for clients in similar industries. Also, look for agencies that have a solid structure internally. Meaning they are not growing too fast, have a low churn of staff, and truly live by the values they share.
Behdad also suggests that businesses should ask about the agency’s process and make sure that they can communicate effectively with their team.
Finally, businesses should look for transparency in pricing and contracts. “Make sure you understand what you are paying for and what is included in the contract,” he says. “Don’t be afraid to ask questions or negotiate terms. I’ve seen way too many businesses overcharged for terrible work when they thought they were getting a deal.”
With his partners, Behdad helps businesses build the right marketing teams. “I love to see my clients achieve their business goals and to be a part of that journey with them,” Behdad shares. With his unique combination of technical skills as an engineer and years assisting mid-market customers, Behdad has successfully matched over 200 clients with the right marketing partners.