Many marketers look to hire an in-house design team so that they can always have on-brand ad creative made by team members that are looped into the day-to-day intricacies of a business. However, for companies that are looking for a specific area of expertise or others that can’t hire a full design team, working with an agency to produce ad creative can provide outsized benefits.

At Primer, our focus is on creating top-notch growth marketing creative to test social media ads. And we test a lot of ads. To limit the time spent back and forth in review stages, we’ve learned some tricks that help assure our partners that they’ll get perfect creative every time.

Here’s how to get perfect creative every time when working with an agency.

Align on Vision and Goals

The first thing that should be discussed, even before signing a contract with an agency, is your goals. Share:

  • what you are willing to invest now and in the future
  • what channels you want to start with vs. what channels you want to expand to 
  • types of media you’ll want to use
  • what resources you can provide vs. what is expected to be provided by the agency (such as videos of paid UGC for ads)

You may be tempted to hire an agency to solve an immediate problem, but it would be much more beneficial long-term to make sure they can help you reach future goals as well. Launching Facebook Ads with static brand-content may be your priority right now, but if you know you’ll eventually want to expand to TikTok with creator UGC, you’ll want to make sure you hire an agency that can create branded ads, video ads, and film UGC footage. That way, you won’t have to find a brand new agency 4 months down the road.

Related: The Growth Marketing Team Members You Get When You Hire Primer

Embrace the Agency Partnership and Speak in Problem/Solution When Reviewing Ad Creative

Designers don’t know your brand as well as you. Likewise, you as a growth marketer may not know everything they know about design best practices. There are many intricacies on both sides that contribute to the success of a creative asset. It’s important to lean on each other for expertise and ask questions. 

Review Ad Creative With Your Agency

To get better ad creative, try to speak in “problem and solution” rather than critiques. For instance, our designers are focused on conversions, not brand marketing. This may result in an asset that may look different than your typical brand creative. Instead of requesting direct edits, find out what they were trying to achieve and help them to do it in a more on-brand way. You might even learn some conversion best practices along the way! 

While simply telling them what to do might be faster, it would be more time efficient in the long-run to discuss the thought process behind their design choices and identify the problem of why it doesn’t work for your brand. That way, the designer can learn from those mistakes and make amazing creative that converts both now and in the future.

Embrace these great opportunities to learn from each other and build a more solid partnership, keeping in mind that everyone is working toward the same goal.

Related: Meet the Primer Design Team

Make Detailed Creative Briefs or Discuss a Detailed Creative Strategy

When discussing the creative strategy or putting together a creative brief, you’ll want to be as detailed as possible in order to get the best creative. The agency needs to know your vision. If you don’t have a very clear vision, that’s okay, but be open to assets being a bit off from what you had expected. The designer can only know and activate on the details you explicitly provide. Sharing any inspiration (and why you like it) is also extremely important, especially if you don’t have a lot of visual assets.

It is always helpful for both parties if you can hone in on your vision for an asset or campaign and provide lots of details. From there, the designer will fill in the visual gaps based on your brand guidelines and design best practices.

Related: Free Creative Brief Templates for Video Ads

Maintain Close Communication on Results and Goals

You’ll need to stay in sync on what ad creative worked, what didn’t work, and why. Over-communication is better than under-communication, but we think we’ve struck the right balance. We meet with our partners every 2 weeks to discuss the past 2-weeks ad performance, creative wins, and how we’re tracking on goals. We also discuss new opportunities and strategize campaigns for the next 2-week period.

While you may think an adjustment to a goal regarding your creative strategy may be fairly obvious, your agency may have a totally different viewpoint. Make sure to speak these thoughts aloud so that they don’t fall through the cracks!

Your Next Agency for Ad Creative?

Try these 4 things to start getting perfect creative every time when working with an agency!

Need an agency? We can help you hit your goals faster with our high-volume creative testing strategy. Learn how!  ↓