So you are finding it harder and harder to beat our your competition for those internet leads or sales. You used to be able to do the internet marketing yourself including email marketing, paid search marketing, and search engine optimization of your site. Now you need to hire a professional internet marketing company to help your business succeed on the internet.

What you need to know about many internet marketing companies is that they charge a large amount of money and then outsource the work over seas or higher some college kid to do the work. The problems with this are that you are getting mediocre work for a really high fee. Many times, you won’t even break even on your internet marketing investment.

First you need to hire a local internet marketing company to do the work for you. Check out their website and see if they have case studies. See if they will share results on previous or current internet marketing projects. Ask them if they do the work themselves and who specifically will be working on your project. Do you have access to them during normal business hours. Will they offer weekly reporting and weekly status calls to update you on your marketing investment ROI.

Second you need to know what type of fee structure they offer. Is there an hourly rate, by project rate, or can you pay based on performance. Where you pay them a percentage of sales or a cost per lead. Internet marketing companies can charge anywhere from $50-$500 an hour, a minimum monthly fee of $2,500 up to 100s of thousands of dollars and more.

Get several quotes with references for each marketing company. Find out if they offer many in house products or specialize in just one or two. Internet marketing agencies offer services in email marketing, social marketing, paid search marketing, mobile marketing, display marketing and more. Make sure the company you choose has been working with the particular marketing service you need for at least a year and it’s not a secondary service that they spend minimal efforts trying to make it successful.

When it comes to choosing an marketing company to help increase your leads and sales, take your time, ask lots of questions. Don’t be afraid to ask simple questions about terms that bring up and how they are going to run your campaign. Go to Wikipedia if you don’t understand what they are talking about. Share the proposal with multiple people within a firm and don’t be afraid to negotiate pricing. If they believe the marketing service will help your business succeed, they will provide clear answers and data right off the bat.

Make sure they have an office where you are able to meet them on a monthly basis. You can either meet at the internet marketing companies location or have them meet at your location if you are short on time.

Have a legal adviser look at the contract if you plan on working with the marketing company for more than a month. Make sure any language that should be in the contract to protect your companies best interest is in there. If the marketing company does not agree to add the extra language, then you need to find another company.