Creating a digital marketing RFP for your marketing strategy is one of the first steps in creating a successful campaign. While many do’s, and don’ts surround an RFP, it can be pretty overwhelming to start from scratch. If you’ve ever thought about making one, you’re aware of how difficult they can be.
And yet, with a few minor differences, all of the proposals you get are roughly the same. You’ve built this company from the ground up to become a multi-million dollar entity, and now digital agencies want a piece of your pie in their clean suits and fancy shoes. This guide will walk you through what to include in an RFP, how to distribute it, and how to follow up.
What Is A Digital Marketing RFP?
The RFP is a formal proposal for a company’s digital marketing services. It is frequently utilized by businesses looking for a digital marketing agency to satisfy their expectations.
The term “request for proposal” (RFP) is often used interchangeably with “bid request,” “proposal request,” and “proposal submission.”
While there are many types of RFPs, the main purpose of this document is to gather information about various vendors’ qualifications and services to make an informed decision about which vendor should be chosen for a project or contract.
In other words, it’s a formal way for companies to solicit bids from potential vendors, usually through an online portal called a Request For Proposals (RFP) system.
How Long Should The RFP Be?
The length of your RFP will be an important factor in how quickly you can get responses from vendors. You should make it as soon as reasonably practicable. If you have a lot of requirements, you may need to break up your RFP into sections and send them out individually to different vendors. This involves obtaining input on each section before moving on to the next.
The average length of an RFP is between five and eight pages, but some can be as long as 30 pages or more, depending on the scope of work involved. For example, if you’re outsourcing your digital marketing agency recruitment process and multiple stages are involved (e.g., phone interviews, video interviews), it may take longer for vendors to respond than if they just have to provide pricing information and references.
Are RFPs Necessary?
RFP aims to help you make better decisions about your marketing and advertising. The following points will highlight why an RFP is so important:
1. Make sure you know what you are purchasing.
2. Know the options available to you.
3. You need to have a way to compare different vendors’ proposals side-by-side.
4. You need to be able to ask your vendors the right questions and get answers that you can actually use to compare them against each other.
A Perfect Request For Proposal for Digital Marketing
The best way to plan for success is to write an RFP that will help you evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your current digital marketing strategy. The right RFP can help you identify your needs and determine how well a vendor can meet them. The wrong RFP may lead you to choose the wrong company.
Here are some of the most important things to consider when putting together your RFP:
Collect Background Information
The first step in creating a digital marketing RFP is to collect background information on the organization and its needs. This will help you identify the right vendors, create questions relevant to your organization, and craft a compelling request for proposal (RFP).
You can get the facts you need from a lot of different places:
- Internal documents and data
- External research (online, industry reports)
- In-depth interviews with people knowledgeable about your organization’s goals and challenges
- Observe how your organization works on a day-to-day basis.
Identify Your Goals And Objectives
Digital marketing is not just about increasing traffic and leads. It’s all about attracting the ideal visitors to your site, earning their confidence, and transitioning them into clients.
You can make major investments in your potential customers and how to approach them digitally if you know your aspirations. Once you’ve defined your goals, you can then identify which digital marketing tactics will help you achieve them and which ones won’t.
For example, if your goal is to increase brand awareness among millennials in the U.S., social media advertising or a paid search ad campaign would be good. However, if your goal is to generate sales leads for a new product launch, remarketing might be a better option.
Get Specific About Your Budget
You probably have a general idea of how much money you want to spend on digital marketing. But if you want to do it right, you need to get specific about your budget.
Determine how much time (in hours) and money (in dollars) each activity will take. For example, if you’re looking for an agency that can handle social media management and strategy, that could take an average of 20 hours per month. That implies you’ll have to set up $1,000 each month for digital marketing.
You should also imagine how much money you would like to invest in each online marketing channel. For example, if you want to increase traffic by 10% in the next year through SEO and PPC ads, consider spending $50,000 total on those two areas combined — or $25,000 per year on each one individually.
Explain Your Decision-Making Process
You need to explain your decision-making process to the vendor. This is important because you don’t want them to think that you are just going through the motions and are not seriously considering their proposal.
The best way to explain your decision-making process is by providing them with a copy of the evaluation criteria you used to evaluate each proposal. You can include the evaluation criteria in your RFP response or send it at a later date once you have selected a vendor.
If you have not decided on specific metrics, you may need to provide an overview of some of the key benefits and considerations that led you to select one vendor over another.
Your Company’s Culture And Work Environment
Our culture and work environment are very casual and friendly. We have a lot of fun during the day, but we also know how to buckle down when we get things done.
You should try new things and continually look for methods to enhance your procedures. You would also be a bit geeky, which means you love learning new things and trying new tools.
Your team should be comprised of individuals from various backgrounds, each with their own talents and viewpoints. You should also believe that diversity makes us stronger as a company, so you actively seek out talented people who can bring something new to the table.
How To Respond?
A Request for Proposal (RFP) is a formal process company uses to solicit bids from suppliers and contractors. An RFP is an opportunity for your company to reach out to potential partners and vendors while also understanding your clients’ needs.
The first step in responding to an RFP is to read the document thoroughly, which will give you an idea of what information the buyer is looking for in their response. The next step is to create a response that meets all of their criteria and addresses their concerns.
You might predict any follow-up inquiries from the client after sending your statement. They are likely going through several vendors at once, so they may need more information from you before making their final decision.
Check the complete document and make a list of ambiguous points or require clarification. If you have questions about specific parts of the RFP, ask your contact at the company who sent it to you.
Hopefully, we’ve given you plenty of insight into the process and digital that other agencies have already gone through. But even if you’re not sure where to start as an agency, our basic tips should still get you on your way: do your research and make sure that you send out an RFP that’s clear and precise (as well as detailed). However, you should always ask questions.