Understand best practices - what information and requests/questions to include and not include. Learn common pitfalls, e.g., asking for a big creative assignment in a vacuum, not assessing agencies' ability to generate insights, not understanding how they
- Now, you're ready to sit down and write your RFP. RFP content varies based on your type of business, brand, competition, and internal culture, but typically, it includes business and marketing goals, brand background and positioning, scope of work, which details project specifics, target audience, schedule, budget, and agency information. Let's review these in detail.
What business challenges does your business face? How will marketing solve your business challenges? Share relevant background about business performance and future goals. Share your brand strategy and guidelines, including key insights and research. What efforts have or haven't worked in the past? How does the target audience view and engage with your brand? Be as specific as possible with your scope of work, or what's called an SOW. Clearly describe what work you need and when you need it.
This could be a creative strategy, research analysis, creative campaigns, a methodology to measure results, a media plan, or more. Align the SOW with your business and marketing objectives. Share relative technical specifications. For example, infrastructure, digital requirements, security needs and website provisions. Share data and insights about your target audience. For example, who they are, how they think, how they behave, and how they view and engage with your brand.
Share the schedule and highlight milestones and deadlines. Make time for in-person phone or Facetime conversations. Best to schedule some of them and let other conversations happen naturally. This helps you all get to know one another. Provide the budget range, so agencies recommend programs you can afford, and you can compare their proposals fairly. The information about the agency size, number of locations or offices, and current client list should be on their website, so don't bother asking for this in your RFP.
Do ask for information and insight that's not available publicly, such as how does the agency think, do they have any proprietary methodologies, or how they define their culture. Lastly, tell the agencies what submission length and format you'd like. For example, PDF, email, in-person, or a site upload. All the best practices we've covered here, if followed, will help you draft and finalize your RFP.
- Understanding what digital marketing agencies do
- Planning an agency selection team
- Choosing agencies to invite
- Writing an RFP
- Contacting agencies
- Evaluating and choosing an agency
- Finalizing the contract and SOW