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Why People Trust DesignRush
DesignRush has a qualified team of industry experts and agency executives that focus on finding the best creative agencies for your business. Our team determines the key performance indicators, like portfolio, client reviews, and industry reputation, that agencies must meet to be listed. To further leverage our agency expertise, businesses also reach out to DesignRush to streamline the process of finding the right agency via the Marketplace.
Our Picks for The Best Creative Agencies in 2023
The best creative agency on our list is Ascendant Group because of their long-standing 17 years of experience in providing tailored creative solutions.
- Why we chose them: Ascendant Group has a team of seasoned creatives who know how to innovate campaigns and their testimonials and success stories prove that. They have thrived in creating compelling, story-driven brands for businesses across multiple industries.
- What you should consider: Primarily focusing on building creative strategies for corporations and executive leaders, this agency might not be suited for small businesses in terms of both approach and pricing.
- Who are they for: CEOs, Fortune 500 companies, INC 5,000 businesses, multibillion-dollar businesses, and high-potential startups can hire Ascendant Group to help them with effective creative solutions.
Second on our list of the best creative agencies is Digital Silk. They provide end-to-end creative services to B2C and B2B companies, helping their clients grow exponentially.
- Why we chose them: They have experience working with starting and established brands, including HP, Microsoft, Amazon, Xerox, AT&T, and more. They follow a results-driven approach and have been awarded by Interactive Media Awards, Telly Awards, Marcom Awards, W3 Awards, among others.
- What you should consider: Their $125 per hour rate can be steep for businesses with limited budgets, especially for those looking for simple rebranding or brainstorming for naming a product.
- Who are they for: Biotechnology, electric car manufacturing, real estate, healthcare, and e-commerce companies can partner with Digital Silk for their creative needs. This includes branding strategy, brand positioning, marketing strategy, communication strategy, web design and more.
The next best creative marketing agency we recommend is SmartSites. According to their portfolio, they were able to produce over 700 visually-pleasing websites. This is due to their award-winning team, competitive analysis, and market research.
- Why we chose them: They are a creative marketing agency with a track record for helping successful companies grow in the market. Their expertise blends well with their exceptional customer service, backed up with 325+ perfect (5-star) client reviews on Google.
- What you should consider: They offer a limited set of creative solutions, mostly focused on website design and development. This can be a disadvantage if what you are looking for involve multimedia design or branding.
- Who are they for: For businesses of all sizes who want to have a beautiful website that wins customers. They’re best for WordPress, BigCommerce, and other e-commerce brands looking to work with quality services at reasonable prices.
SocialSEO is also one of the top creative agencies on our list. With more than two decades of experience, their portfolio shows their experience of providing creative marketing services with major local and national brands.
- Why we chose them: They are an award-winning creative agency that offers video marketing, graphic design and digital advertising, among others. Based on their previous projects and case studies, they are likely to produce tangible results like more than 300% increase in video views, 23% increase in total leads, and 67% increase in revenue.
- What you should consider: Their preferred working budget ranges between $1,000-$10,000. This may seem expensive for a small business that only needs help with producing non-complex creative materials, such as social media graphics.
- Who are they for: Businesses of all sizes can hire this agency for their creative needs, especially those who want to leverage visually-pleasing marketing collateral for brand awareness. Allied health practices, car manufacturers, and hardware store companies have more edge since the company has experience working with such businesses.
Dotlogics Inc. is an expert in the field of branding and website design, thanks to their agile team that combines ingenuity and technology to provide the best creative solutions.
- Why we chose them: Bringing together strategy, technology, and a creative passion to design the best experience for your business, this company can provide cross-channel marketing that can make your brand relevant to your target audience. They also design high-converting websites that can generate leads 24/7.
- What you should consider: Their small team of fewer than 50 designers, brand strategists, and project managers may hinder them to handle big and complex creative projects.
- Who are they for: Companies looking for a full-stack creative marketing agency can hire Dotlogics Inc. to revamp, improve, or develop their creative strategy and visual brand identity.
10 Best Creative Agencies Compared
|Ascendant Group||Newark, DE||Inquire||Under 49|
|Digital Silk||New York City, NY||$125||100 -249|
|SmartSites||Paramus, NJ||$100||100 - 249|
|SocialSEO||Colorado Springs, CO||Inquire||100 - 249|
|SmartSites||Paramus, NJ||$100||100 - 249|
|Dotlogics Inc.||New York City, NY||$125||Under 49|
|Ramotion||San Francisco, CA||$150||50 - 99|
|Ignite Visibillity||San Diego, CA||$150||100 - 249|
|HigherVisibility||Memphis, TN||Inquire||50 - 99|
|PKG Brand Design||Chicago, IL||$150||Under 49|
How We Picked The Best Creative Agencies
The best creative agencies listed above were selected through a string of key performance indicators. We looked into their extensive portfolio, case studies, and client reviews to evaluate their ability to produce desirable results.
Our agency experts also take into account their awards and recognitions, the types of clients they serve, and their output. In addition, we made sure they display the following qualities:
- Knowledge of multi-disciplinary branding and design
- Ability they stay abreast of the latest design and marketing trends
- Project management and communications skills
- Attention to detail and problem-solving skills
- Reliability and transparency
- And more
Read more about our agency selection criteria here.
DesignRush sustains a directory of over 20,000 agencies categorized by service category, location, expertise and reviews. We build our database in two ways:
- Our dedicated team of agency experts actively search the web for top performing companies. We then pull information from their websites, online presence and client testimonials to verify their status and qualifications prior to listing.
The agencies listed get notified of their profiles on the website and they can choose to claim it or not, which suggests their availability for more collaborations.
- Agencies can also reach out to DesignRush and must go through the verification process prior to being listed.
About the Author
Kristina Vjetrovic is a Client Relationship Manager working directly with Branding & Creative agencies. It allows her to provide industry insights that help business owners make informed hiring decisions, which she proactively manages to nurture long-term B2B customer relationships. For further inquiries, contact her at [email protected].
Creative Agencies FAQs
What Is a Creative Agency?
It is a company that combines branding with marketing and design strategies to help brands perform better both in the physical and in the highly competitive digital world.
They offer a full scope of services that fall under the umbrella of:
- Strategy: The way brands establish themselves on the market and how they serve their customers
- Design: The way brands and products look and feel
- Advertising: The way brands promote themselves and their products or services
- Technology: The way brands integrate technological solutions into their practices
What Do Creative Marketing Agencies Do?
They help brands transform into more engaging enterprises to attract their audiences, generate loyalty and drive conversions.
Their services can include but are not limited to:
- Web design
- Social media marketing
- Graphic design
- Content marketing
- Video marketing
- And more
What Are The Different Types Of Creative Agencies?
We can place these firms into six different categories based on their unique offerings:
- Digital agencies: These specialized companies focus on developing and designing high-performance digital platforms that help brands stand out from the competition. They employ both technical and artistic experts that work on market research, online presence, advertising, lead generation, search engine optimization (SEO), social media, analytics and more.
- Advertising agencies: They particularly concentrate their efforts on marketing and advertising. Careful communications management and audience targeting play a key part in their strategies. This type of agency takes various initiatives that include market research, content creation, campaign development, placing ads, measuring success and client reporting.
- Media agencies: A media agency focuses on helping brands establish authority and increase their reputation. They determine how businesses can reach their audiences, deliver strategies on when and where to advertise and more. Some of the primary offerings are public relations and advertising.
- Design agencies: A design agency that specializes in product, print, branding and digital design. They focus on how brands look and feel and develop strategies to ensure they are enticing and engaging to their potential customers.
- Interactive agencies: These companies are exclusively concerned with internet and technological development. They offer a full range of services including the development of websites, web apps, mobile apps, games, interactive billboards and more.
- Consulting agencies: They track and analyze brands’ performance and current strategies. Then, they use the data they collect to help businesses achieve success and get desired results. So, these specialized agencies may give them advice on how to expand into new markets, how to develop and launch digital platforms, how to improve their campaigns and more.
How Much Do Creative Marketing Agencies Charge For Their Services?
The most common way these specialized agencies calculate the price is by the time and effort invested in the project.
Usually, they’ll charge you by the hour and the cost approximately ranges between $50 and $250.
A few factors that will dictate this cost are:
- The type of services you need
- The type of company you hire
- The company stature
- The project deadline
Another billing option is the result-oriented fee. In this case, you would issue the payment if your partner agency delivers the desired results.
- Some common goals include:
- Generating higher website traffic
- Boosting website search engine rankings
- Strengthening brand authority
These specialized firms can also charge you for the project.
Agreeing on a fixed price for a certain project can be convenient whenever it’s difficult to estimate the exact number of hours an agency needs to finish it.
So, this is how much you can expect to pay for the following services:
- Logo design ($2,500+)
- Website design ( $1000 - $100,000+)
- Social media marketing ($900 to $1600+/month)
Which method of billing you will choose will depend on the scope of the project(s) and your own needs.
If it’s a rather small project that can be quite well-estimated in terms of workload, going for the hourly fee is just fine – and that’s the most common method of invoicing as well.
Why Hire A Creative Agency?
These are the key reasons why you should invest in these specialized services:
Reason #1: Resources
A survey by CoSchedule shows that companies are not able to find the required resources and assets to complete projects on time.
In fact, 17% of them are unsure, 15% somewhat agree and 4% strongly agree.
Partnering with a specialized agency can be a practical solution if your organization does not have:
- The financial resources to employ full-time experts
- The tools and technology to complete a project
These specialized agencies have the know-how and the tools to execute projects from start to finish.
They employ a team of experts, from analysts to web designers and content writers. So, hiring an agency would mean having access to a whole team for the price of a single expert.
Reason #2: Strategy
Research conducted by CB Insights on ″Why Startups Fail″ shows that there are many reasons why young businesses don’t manage to survive.
Some of them are:
- Get outcompeted
- Have user-unfriendly product
- Ignore customers
- Have poor marketing
...all these factors come down to a lack of proper strategy.
The good news is that these agencies have the knowledge to create and execute strategies.
They can provide you with guidance and help you develop a plan based on your unique goals, branding style and budget.
Whether it is content creation, website design, or media placement, your partner will provide the needed support and get the most out of your project.
Reason #3: Quality Work
It takes seven seconds for consumers to formulate their first impressions. (Forbes)
First impressions count. Whether it be an advertisement, a landing page or a social profile that your audience engages with, it truly makes a difference in how they feel about your brand and your offerings.
Quality and consistency play a key role in successful marketing operations - which are key characteristics of top agencies.
How To Choose The Best Creative Marketing Agency
Here are a few tips that will help you choose the right agency partner for your business needs:
- Decide what services you need: Understand exactly what goals your organization should achieve so that you can choose a firm that has experience and expertise in that particular area.
- Determine your budget: Find out what are the possible outcomes of the project and how your business will benefit in the long run. Then, decide just how much that’s worth in dollars and what return on investment you could receive.
- Go through these agencies’ past work: Pay attention to previous experience and examine their work to see if they have solved similar business problems or completed work within your industry.
- Consider communication: Make sure the agency you hire defines their communication channels and contact person from the beginning of your collaboration. The right partner should be available for all sorts of meetings, updates and consultations. Proper communication is vital since it can make the project a success.
- Understand their strategic approach: Learn how potential partners create their strategies. The right fit should consider every client unique and come up with a tailored strategic plan rather than a one size fits all tactic.
10 Questions To Ask Creative Agencies Before You Hire The Right One
These are the top questions that you should ask prospective agencies before you hire one:
- Where can I see your past work, case studies and client reviews?
- Have you ever worked on a similar project? What were the results?
- According to you, do our goals seem realistic?
- How will you create a strategy to help us achieve these objectives? Why will this strategy work for our specific brand?
- What results can we expect and when can we expect to see them?
- What tools/resources will you use to conceptualize, create and execute campaigns and gather results?
- What materials and information will you need from us? How are we going to be involved in the project?
- How often will you report on progress and performance?
- How will you communicate and collaborate with our company during the project? Who will be the contact person?
- How much will this project cost? Are there any additional fees we need to know about?
Takeaways On Creative Agencies
Partnering with this kind of agency gives businesses like yours access to highly qualified digital experts who also have a knack for unique, ingenious ideas.
It means that whatever initiatives you execute will be optimized for great performance and a strong return on investment.
These companies typically charge between $50 and $250 per hour.
To choose the best firm for your business, be sure to:
- Decide what services you need
- Determine your budget
- Go through these agencies’ past work
- Consider communication
- Understand their strategic approach
Best of luck!