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2021 Marketing Agency Rates

How much should you really be paying?

 

Whether you’re looking to hire your first marketing agency or reviewing your existing roster, it’s important to know how much you should be paying your agencies.

 

How much does it cost
agency analysis

Real Agency Costs From Real Briefs

Industry averages can be misleading when you’re trying to gauge how much you should be spending on your marketing or development projects. From your business’s sector through to your annual ad spend, many factors can influence the price you can expect to pay agencies.

That’s why we’ve anonymised and shared real data from seven recent briefs and seven different UK agencies, with each client representing a different industry with its own unique requirements. Jump to a specific brief for more detail.

Don’t Get Overcharged!

With so many variables affecting what agencies can and do charge their clients (and even these vary between agencies), it can be difficult to make sure you’re getting value for your marketing budget and find an agency that can really fulfil your needs.

At Columba, we’ve helped countless businesses of all sizes and across a range of industries to partner with agencies that really understand their briefs and can deliver outstanding results.

If you’re interested in getting matched with a personalised selection of agencies tailored to you, fill in the form below, or find out more about how we can help you find your perfect agency

preparing for a pitch
ProjectWebsite Design Brief for CharityPR Brief for an SMEBrand Refresh Brief for a SchoolLead Generation for a Start-UpBrand Development Brief for an SMEDigital Marketing for a PLCPR for a Start-Up
Summary
Update an outdated website to increase visibility of the charity and increase memberships, donations, and applications from those in need.
Use PR become an instantly recognisable household name with laying strong foundations for the growth of the brand and the launch of their sister companies.
Rebrand to better engage prospective pupils and parents, increase buy-in from stakeholders, and differentiate itself in a dense market.
Use marketing to expand brand presence and make their USP known both online and offline, starting with the charity sector and branching out in the future.
Develop new messaging and design to clearly communicate the brand to prospective customers and inspire confidence in the credibility of the brand and its services.
Run a test campaign that will provide sufficient evidence, data and insights to advise on whether the brand should launch a Direct-To-Consumer offering.
Increase profile of brand CEO, in turn driving new customers to purchase products and raising awareness of the brand in general.
Purpose
Increase donations via new website
Increase brand awareness and recall via PR
Attract students and satisfy stakeholders via full rebrand
Increase brand presence in multiple industries via digital marketing
Clarify value proposition and brand message via design and messaging
Test the viability of a DTC offer via digital marketing
Increase CEO's profile to increase sales and market penetration via PR
Industry
Charity / Non-Profit
Courier and Logistics
Education
Information Technology & Services
Computer Software
Chemicals
Travel
Upfront Cost
£14,100
£13,000
£46,750
£4,500
£15,000
£40,000
£2,000
DETAILS
FIGURES
Project
Website Brief for Charity
Project length
5 months
Client size
~5 employees
Client industry
Charity/Non-profit
Agency Est.
2014
Agency size
~5 employees
Project costs
£14100
Recurring costs
£25-50 pcm

Web Design for a Charity

This web project consisted of the design, development and maintenance of a UK charity’s website.

As is common with web projects, costs were heavily weighted toward the development side (rather than the UX and design side), consisting of a WordPress build, quality assurance and testing.

£14,000 is on the lower end of the scale for the design and development of a website, but is in the range of what you can expect for a basic WordPress site without complex functionality or 3rd party software integrations.

Public Relations for a Logistics Company

Public relations is about more than publishing press releases, and this is reflected in a recent partnership between a mid-sized agency and logistics SME.

With a healthy retainer of £12,000 per month and one-off project costs of £13,000, this project naturally sits at the higher end of what similar sized clients can expect to pay.

The project fee consisted of strategy, design and the delivery of 2 distinct PR campaigns, while the £12,000  retainer covered more of what you can expect as line items in a PR contract, including press office, digital, and social media support.

DETAILS
FIGURES
Project
PR Brief for SME
Project length
1 year
Client size
~50 employees
Client industry
Courier & logistics
Agency Est.
2004
Agency size
~35 employees
Project costs
£13000
Recurring costs pcm
£12000
DETAILS
FIGURES
Project
Brand refresh brief for school
Project length
8 months
Client size
~60 employees
Client industry
Education
Agency Est.
2011
Agency size
~10 employees
Project costs
£46750
Recurring costs pcm
£0

Brand Refresh for a School

Brand refreshes also vary substantially in both scope and cost, but typically culminate in the delivery of collateral, guidelines, strategy, logo / palette redesign and more.

In this case, the brand refresh included more than just the creation of brand values and guidelines, hence the higher than usual price for a brand refresh.

Instead, the client received a series of deliverables including a flagship publication, a bank of creative assets, x2 fully managed creative campaigns, and photo, video and brand shoots.

In our experience, £10-15k is what you can expect to pay for brand development  and guidelines alone.

Lead Generation for an IT Start-Up

Lead generation comes in many forms: from targeted outreach campaigns and generating prospect lists, to the use of performance marketing to generate high volumes of leads.

This project was more of the latter, seeing an IT start-up employ an agency to use a combination of PR, PPC, social media management, content creation, and email marketing in order to scale. 

project fee covered research, set-up of campaigns and other one-off deliverables, the £7,000 retainer covers the on-going management of these distinct services. Being charged for a % of ad spend is a common payment model that you can expect to see when hiring a PPC agency. Others charge a fixed fee based on the size and complexity of your accounts.

DETAILS
FIGURES
Project
Lead generation brief for start-up
Project length
1 year
Client size
~2 employees
Client industry
Information technology & Services
Agency Est.
2018
Agency size
~10 employees
Project costs
£4500 (+% ad spend)
Recurring costs pcm
£7000

Ready To Find Your Next Agency?

Brand Development for a Software SME

We recently partnered a software SME with a 10-person agency who delivered a one-off brand development project for £15k.

Consisting of a brand values and messaging workshop, customer and competitor research, revised brand strategy and messaging, UX and UI audit and guidance on execution; this is a textbook brand development project with a price and deliverables that fall in line with what you should expect for this kind of work.

DETAILS
FIGURES
Project
Brand development brief for SME
Project length
Currently ongoing
Client size
~60 employees
Client industry
Computer software
Agency Est.
2017
Agency size
~10 employees
Project costs
£15000
Recurring costs pcm
£0

A Digital Marketing Campaign for a Chemical PLC

As with lead generation, digital marketing spans many areas, and the price is determined by the exact services you need.

Unusually, for this client digital marketing was seen as a one-off distinct project with no recurring management fees.

In this case, half of the spend was allocated to ad spend, while the remaining half was spent on deliverables including social media plans, a video commercial, a shopify website, campaign strategy, creative assets and the set-up and management of performance marketing and paid social media campaigns.

DETAILS
FIGURES
Project
Test campaign for PLC
Project length
3 months
Client size
~75 employees
Client industry
Chemicals
Agency Est.
2017
Agency size
~10 employees
Project costs
£40000
Recurring costs pcm
£0
DETAILS
FIGURES
Project
PR Brief for Start-Up
Project length
1 year
Client size
~15 employees
Client industry
Travel
Agency Est.
2016
Agency size
~10 employees
Project costs
£2000
Recurring costs pcm
£3000

Public Relations for a Travel Industry Start-Up

At the modest end of the PR cost scale is this project with a travel industry start-up. 

A £2k project fee covered research into the business, industry and competitors, while the £3k retainer covers what is essentially an outsourced press office, accounting for social media management, case study and story pitching, social media monitoring and media relations more generally.

This is a textbook PR retainer in terms of size and deliverables.

Get In Touch

Brands, fill in this form to start your journey with your perfect agency.

 

Agencies, fill in this form to start building your pipeline on autopilot!

Get In Touch

Brands, fill in this form to start your journey with your perfect agency.

 

Agencies, fill in this form to start building your pipeline on autopilot!

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