For enterprise clients or global campaigns, finding a digital production agency with the infrastructure to scale their services can mean the difference between costly trial-and-error and a timely, on-budget launch.
But how can you separate the wheat from the chaff?
At Digitaland, we built enterprise-grade scalability into our production model from the beginning. So we know what it takes to serve enterprise clients and develop global campaigns. That’s why we put together this list of questions, designed to zero in on the providers who can perform.
Find out if a Rich Media Vendors can scale their services
Some of these questions are the same ones we recommend any client ask when screening potential digital production vendors. We’re including insights on exactly how they can indicate enterprise-grade capabilities.
1. How do you handle scale?
Direct and to the point, this is the most important question to ask a digital production vendor. While every campaign will be different, the core components of building a successful enterprise-grade campaign don’t change. You’re looking for specific infrastructure elements that cater to large-scale campaigns.
Look for Rich Media Vendors with a full-time team and on-demand weekend and part-time team. This means they can accommodate any timeline, no matter the number of assets.
For retainer arrangements at scale, good indicators of enterprise-ready infrastructure include tiered pricing and dedicated team sizes that change based on the number of deliverables in a billing period.
2. Are you able to build banners from scratch?
On the surface, hand coding banner ads doesn’t appear to be a skill that scales. It’s more time intensive than relying on frameworks.
But the reason we’re big proponents of hand coding is simple: it allows for better quality control, faster production and more creative deliverables.
Hand coding saves you time and money because it allows your digital production agency to build custom deliverables to your exact specifications. Many frameworks and platforms force you to work within their confines, limiting your creative capacity. A custom ad format that would have hit a snag in a banner-building tool is easy to tweak when a developer knows how to hand code.
At scale, this means less time spent troubleshooting and more time to build out complex HTML5 ads or custom formats.
3. How do you deliver creative files?
There are two options when delivering creative files:
(1) Your digital production agency sends over the files. You or your client upload them to the server. If there are any errors, the files are sent back to the digital production vendor for troubleshooting. Repeat the process until all errors are ironed out.
(2) Your digital production agency uploads the files to the server and handles any troubleshooting on the spot. Once the files are cleared, they’re sent over to you or your client for launch.
Option 1 is time-consuming and frustrating, especially for large campaigns with numerous pieces of creative.
Option 2 takes last-minute workload off your plate and gives you peace of mind, knowing that all your campaign’s files will arrive in ready-to-launch condition.
4. Do you have any experience-based certifications?
While there are several pay-to-play certifications in the digital production ecosystem, the best indicator of a digital production agency’s skills and ability to deliver enterprise-grade services is a select group of experience-based certifications.
These coveted accolades are granted only after a vendor has proven their expertise to a third-party. As a DoubleClick Certified Creative Partner, we can attest to the rigor of these types of programs. The DoubleClick certification is one the few industry certifications that requires a lengthy vetting process – including testing the team on their capabilities – to confirm each agency’s expertise and ability to scale their services for clients big and small.
When getting it right counts, consider looking for experience-based certifications from respected industry authorities.
5. Do you provide creative services?
When you first start looking for a digital production agency to develop banner ad campaigns, you might just be looking for pure digital production prowess. Maybe you already have all the visuals, copy and storyboarding ready to go. You just need a vendor who can transform that into high-impact rich media or banner ads.
But sometimes, you’re not sure what you need. That’s where a creative digital production partner comes in handy.
An experienced digital production agency has built hundreds (or thousands) of banner ads, emails, landing pages and videos for digital campaigns across a wide variety of industries, platforms and devices. They have a feel for best practices, creative insights and what formats drive certain KPIs. They can help you get through a creative dry spell or brainstorm a multi-channel strategy for reaching more of your target audience.
Most important of all, look for digital production vendors who can become trusted partners, advisors and contributors to a successful digital marketing strategy. A team that understands digital creative shouldn’t just look good – it needs to perform well, too. Once you find them, they can transform your campaigns.