One of the common questions we hear from clients is, “Should I hire an industry-specific agency?“. That’s an excellent question because specific industries are more complex than others, and not all generalized agencies understand those markets well enough to advertise to the correct target audiences effectively. However, there are many situations where an agency with robust experience can outperform a specialized agency if the industry is more straightforward in nature.
I’ll provide some great examples to illustrate my point. A complex industry that requires experience and intricate knowledge of the target audience, the impact seasonality has, the nuance of insurance and payment, and a deep understanding of the decision-making process are behavioral healthcare and addiction treatment centers. A generalized agency with no experience in this industry will fail 100% of the time. It would take them months, if not longer, to even establish an acceptable baseline level of performance. Even then, that baseline will change because they’ve not experienced the impact seasonality has on the industry. Quite frankly, it’s a disaster.
Addiction treatment centers are not in a league of their own. Eldercare, the financial services industry, and E-Commerce based businesses are some other great examples of situations where a deep understanding of HIPAA, Financial Services Compliance, and PCI Compliance are essential. If your generalized full-service agency has this experience, then you could have stellar results with them. If they don’t, then you might need to seek out a specialized agency.
An example of a substantially easier industry is working with an HVAC company or a Collision Center. It’s easier because we’ve all most likely shopped for an HVAC company when our furnace goes out or a collision center when we’ve had an auto accident. The user searches and they most likely call the first name on the list or the first name they recognize. Because of this, any competent agency that knows how to do lead generation can quickly generate results for these types of industries. In these cases, it rarely makes sense to go with a specialized agency because they are probably giving you a generic one-size-fits-all solution. They are most likely working with your competitors. They lack the expertise and knowledge that an agency working with various clients is likely to possess. You could get a competitive edge working with a competent agency that is not specialized in your industry.
Let’s discuss some pros and cons of specialized vs. general agencies.
Generalized Agency Pros
- Knowledge of many industries
- Understands market trends
- Leverage techniques that work in different verticals
- Less likely to work with competitors
- Can help you think outside of the box
Generalized Agency Cons
- May not understand your industry as well as they should
- May apply techniques that work for other industries that don’t work for yours
- May require additional onboarding and learning time
- May not care to deep dive into your enterprise for a long-term partnership
- Understands your specific industry
- Can “talk the talk.”
- Can share learnings of other clients in the same industry
- May have streamlined pricing and processes.
- May lack broader knowledge of marketing outside of the industry
- May work with your competitors
- May provide a one-size-fits-all or cookie-cutter work product
- May not be loyal or exclusive to you
- May share your inside information with competitors
As you can see from the above information, there are many pros and cons to both examples. Our opinion is that an agency that services a variety of industries but has substantial expertise in a few is the best fit. Here at Mediaura, we are experts in Healthcare, specifically Behavioral Healthcare and Addiction Treatment Centers. We have over 12 years of experience in this field alone and have worked with dozens of businesses, both large and small, across the United States in this industry. You would be hard-pressed to find a specialized agency that knows more than us in this field. We are also very familiar with building E-Commerce brands, working with QSR’s, Food & Beverage, Spirits, financial services, accounting firms, and more. And yes, we also work with the local HVAC company and Collision Center (and have tremendous success at that).
When deciding on an agency and comparing generalized agencies vs. specialized agencies, it’s essential to know if the agency has experience in your industry and whether they can deliver the results.
If you would like to schedule a consultation to speak with us about your business, we would be happy to have a discussion to determine if we’re a good fit for you.