How to choose a B2B marketing agency

Choosing a B2B marketing agency is a big decision.

There’s a lot to think about when it comes to weighing up what to look for, or if you even need one.

Explore the different types of marketing agencies there are and what the best fit for your SaaS business is.

The last two years have been awash with redundancies across the technology industry, in 2023 there were more than 240,000 jobs lost, and this has hit marketing teams the hardest, leaving many businesses looking for outsourced support. Whilst investment is at an all time low down (25% since 2022), perhaps you’re one of the lucky few who’ve received recent investment and are looking for support to drive growth.

Whatever the reason you might be considering a B2B marketing agency, we get it can be a bit of a minefield to navigate.

Perhaps you’re asking yourself what type of B2B marketing agency do I need? How much does a B2B marketing agency even cost? Or even how will they work with internal stakeholders and integrate with your teams?

With so much to consider when choosing a B2B marketing agency, it can be easy to get caught up in the nuances and lose sight of what you’re setting out to accomplish by enlisting an agency – in some instances, an agency may not even be the best solution for you.

Whatever questions you might have, we’ve got you covered.

In this article, we will explore:

– Whether you need a B2B marketing agency

– The different types of marketing agencies and what to expect

– Some key considerations to have on hand when choosing an agency


Do you need a B2B marketing agency?

Considering starting or boosting your marketing efforts? A B2B marketing agency is a great option.

For SaaS businesses, regardless of size, a strong inbound engine and customer retention programs are crucial to meet your Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) growth goals. Yet, achieving results demands dedicated time and investment in marketing. Partnering with a B2B agency provides external expertise and resources without the burden of hiring, or managing multiple freelancers. Freeing up your time to focus on other business functions while ensuring your marketing needs are met.

Types of B2B marketing agencies

Choosing a B2B marketing agency is a big responsibility, and there’s a lot of different ones to choose from, here are some of the most popular types of B2B marketing agencies:

Customer experience agencies 

Example – 

These agencies focus on enhancing the overall experience that customers have with a business, from initial interaction to post-purchase support. They strategise and implement processes to ensure positive customer interactions across all touchpoints.

SEO agencies

Example – 

Specialising in increasing a company’s visibility in search engine results, SEO agencies optimise website content, structure, and other factors to improve organic search rankings and drive relevant traffic.

Content agencies

Example –

Content marketing agencies create and distribute valuable, relevant, and consistent content. Their goal is to engage and influence potential customers, ultimately driving profitable customer action.

Advertising agencies 

Example – 

Advertising agencies design and execute advertising campaigns across various channels, (primarily digital channels such as Google, Linkedin, Meta and X) to promote a company’s products or services and increase brand awareness.

PR agencies

Example – 

PR agencies manage a company’s public image and reputation through strategic communication. They craft and distribute press releases, engage with media outlets, and manage crises to maintain a positive brand image and foster strong relationships with the public.

This is where it becomes really important to be clear on what you are trying to achieve: Do you need help developing a marketing plan? Are you looking for end-to-end marketing support? Or are you looking to fill a specific in-house skills deficit? Understanding this will be key to making the right decision.

Specialist Vs Full-Service

Specialist B2B marketing agencies

If you’re looking to fill a specific in-house skill then this might be for you. Specialist agencies only focus on one area of your marketing and are ‘experts’ in this field. They’re great if you already have a strong and effective marketing strategy in place and can contribute to specific channels you want to scale.


However, by nature specialists are less able to help with strategy or multiple facets of your marketing. So if you’re looking for strategic direction and execution support across a range of channels and tactics, a specialised agency isn’t the best choice for you.

Full-Service B2B marketing agencies

If you’re looking for a strategy and full marketing support across multiple channels then this might be a better fit for you.

A full-service B2B marketing agency should be able to manage all your marketing efforts as well as provide strategic input to help your business grow.

The big advantage of a full-service B2B marketing agency is its ability to provide a combination of expertise, flexibility and scalability. They aren’t just an outsourced freelancer doing a one-off project for you, instead, they are involved in the whole process.

Unlike a consultant who might give you a fancy strategy document and leave you to it – a good B2B Agency will start by delivering a strategy, with goals, timelines and budget and will execute against this plan so you can measure the results.

Another benefit of this type of agency is it allows businesses to dip their toes into different marketing channels, messaging and audiences. This flexibility is particularly critical for early-stage startups (Seed, Series A and Series B) who are still figuring out what works for them. Early-stage tech businesses don’t have the luxury of being able to hire someone to “try” a new marketing channel but a full-service agency could give you greater flexibility to try new things to work out your perfect marketing mix.

Finally a full-service agency provides business with the added benefit of being able to tap into specialists (that otherwise they might not have been able to hire) from CMOs, Product Managers to Advertising specialists and changing their level of input at different stages of your growth journey.. Armed with insights on what channels work for your SaaS business you can then use this to hire or work with a more specialist agency.

On the other hand, their level of involvement means you will need to arm your new agency’s account team with detailed information on your product or service, industry and ICP (ideal customer profile). A good agency will take you through an onboarding process to extract this information from your key business stakeholders so they always have it to hand. Whilst this process can be time-consuming in the first instance, it indicates a level of commitment –  and with the right agency, should be quicker than onboarding a new hire.

Things to look for when choosing a B2B marketing agency:

  • Expertise
  • Marketing
  • Pricing
  • Crazy claims
  • Working culture

A specific area of expertise

Something to look out for when picking your marketing agency is when a company says they’re an ‘expert in everything’ which usually means they offer everything at an average level. Unless it is a huge agency (likely with a huge price tag), there is no way they will have the level of expertise they’re claiming across multiple industries and marketing channels.

It’s a much safer (and less costly) bet, to go with a marketing agency that has expertise in your specific industry, with a team that have actually been there and done that, and speak your language. If you’re looking for an expert full-service marketing agency with proven experience in SaaS without the hefty price tag, visit Codi.

Their own marketing

It’s a good idea to check out what the agency’s own marketing looks like, you’re only as good as your last performance as they say. Look at their website, their content, and their social media channels. If they aren’t doing a good job themselves, how are they going to do a good job for you?

It’s also a good idea to check out previous clients that they’ve worked with and read some testimonials to help you gauge how they work with clients.


Figuring out what’s considered a ‘good price’ for an agency can be tricky. Sometimes, you might come across prices that seem too good to be true, and well, they probably are. If an agency promises to handle everything from content creation to paid ads to PR for £2000/month, chances are they won’t deliver up to par.

You also need to be careful of agencies that price based on the size of your spend. Typically you see this with digital agencies who charge a percentage of your digital spend (upwards of 10%).  This model makes sense if you’re a pre IPO tech business spending millions on advertising with a huge account for your specialist agency to manage. The issue however is primarily for early stage startups as this incentives the agency to get you to spend more (and on top of this they are probably advertising partners with companies like meta, google that incentives further spend from clients). Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

You’ll also find agencies that charge per channel, bundling various marketing services like organic social content and PPC. Meanwhile, some offer packages ranging from basic ‘essentials’ to full-on support for your existing marketing team. It all boils down to what you prefer and where your business stands.

Buzzwords and crazy claims

Marketers are unfortunately renowned for being fluffy. If they’re pitching in vague, pretty language full of buzzwords, and staying away from direct, clear information, you can almost guarantee this will continue throughout your engagement with the agency. Equally, if they’re promising 100 high-quality MQLs within the first month from a £2000 budget – you can guarantee you’re going to be disappointed.

Look out for clear, authentic and easy-to-digest explanations of what they actually do, and not just wishful empty promises. Again, check those testimonials  – this is hard evidence that what they say they do works. No good agency should feel the need to make exaggerated claims.  Marketing takes time and effort and this is always reflected in those who have worked with them and can vouch that it’s true.

The culture and ways of working

Ultimately, it’s important that both your personalities, expectations, and work styles align. Consider if you prefer agencies that suggest initiatives or proactively execute plans. Do you need flexibility to adjust efforts or are you comfortable with a fixed, year-long contract? Determine your preferred frequency and format of updates: regular short catch-ups or occasional feedback on progress, and you will have a much better working relationship to excel your marketing growth.

The only way to really find this crucial aspect out is to get in contact with them and arrange a quick call. Ask questions, and really get to know the agency you want to work with, it’ll definitely pay off in the long run.

In Summary

Choosing a B2B marketing agency is a big decision, one that can be costly and damaging to your business if you get it wrong. So make sure you’re clear on your needs, goals and expectations before deciding on an agency. Do some digging and reach out to a couple of different agencies to see what the market rate is for their services so that you can come armed and ready when speaking to your preferred agency.

What does CodI Do?

We work alongside co-founders, sales teams and marketing professionals like colleagues, not clients. We not only have an experienced SaaS marketing team, but allow the bandwidth you need from your marketing function without having to hire that expensive in-house team, with complete flexibility to ramp up or ramp down your marketing efforts as required.

We focus on metrics that drive revenue, not fluffy ego-boosting numbers. Here are the real results we’ve achieved for our customers in the past 6 months –

If you’re a SaaS start-up and are looking for that full-service B2B SaaS marketing agency that offers that flexibility, get in touch with us today to skyrocket your marketing.

Discover how Codi can support you.