If a digital marketer tells you they can handle all of their brand’s content strategy, creation, distribution and analysis entirely on their own, they’re lying.
OK, maybe they’re not lying. But there’s more to the story.
Content marketing agencies are filled with talented teams who are ready to build your marketing strategy and create results-driven deliverables. When you’re feeling the overwhelming need for more time and talent, partnering with an agency is a smart move to increase your output while adding more thought partners to your toolbox.
Our Picks for Top Content Marketing Agencies
Once you start the process of finding the right content marketing agency for your needs, parsing through the seemingly endless list of companies can become a project in its own right. This list of rockstar agencies is here to make your search a little easier.
Best Overall: Brafton
We know — including ourselves in a list of top content marketing agencies seems like the obvious answer. But like the great RuPaul says, “If you can’t love yourself, how in the h*ll are you gonna love somebody else?”
In all seriousness, though, we have the evidence to back up our claim and it would be an honor to add your company to our list of worldwide clients.
Brafton is an end-to-end, complete digital marketing partner that provides the data, strategy, content, technology and results across all mediums, at any scale and within any industry.
With a robust team of full-time content creators, project managers and strategists located around the globe, Brafton is equipped to offer a full suite of marketing services for all of your content goals. This extensive roster also allows Brafton to match clients with team members who are best suited to their needs, industry and timezone.
Brafton scores high in external agency reviews, including a second-place ranking in the Clutch Leaders Matrix for top content marketing companies in the U.S. and high marks in Australia from The Manifest.
Another defining characteristic about Brafton is that the agency walks the walk that they advise their clients to follow. Notable examples include the agency’s high-ranking blog, diverse resource library and a successful content marketing podcast (coined “Above the Fold”).
What’s more, Brafton shows off its credibility in creating optimized content by ranking at the top of search results for many of its core business areas, including business writing services, content creation services, marketing consulting services, paid search management and web analytics agency.
Brafton’s one-of-a-kind software offering, The Brafton Platform, was built by content marketers for content marketers. The platform allows its 10,000+ global users to plan, produce and measure content marketing in one centralized hub.
Fluent in several industry lingos and equally comfortable speaking to B2C and B2B audiences, Brafton’s client list includes AIG, Farmers Insurance, Sotheby’s, Pearson, Zendesk, Rubbermaid Commercial Products, MobileCause, Preply, Phone Ninjas and more.
If you’re looking for true content marketing experts who strike the balance of being a large global agency without forfeiting personalized, hands-on client experiences, you won’t regret working with Brafton.
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Research Gurus: Fractl
Fractl is a full-service digital marketing agency with a strong focus on SEO, rankings and online growth. In a nutshell, Fractl helps businesses acquire more customers from organic search.
With a research-heavy approach, the team has a wealth of knowledge in various industry-related topics. You can find their research in well-known publications and journals, including MarketingProfs, The Economist, Harvard Business Review and The New York Times.
This research expertise is a significant benefit of working with Fractl because they can provide clients with original research and data, as well as handle the publication and distribution to boost recognition and credibility among relevant audiences.
Fractl’s high rankings on sites like Clutch feature client reviews that speak to impressive results, including website traffic increases, dramatic jumps in search engine rankings and brand mentions in significant publications.
While most of their business comes from mid-market and enterprise companies, Fractl can also drive results for small businesses. Their client list boasts names like DirecTV, Discover, Superdrug, Fanatics, Paychex, Indeed and more.
If you’re looking to grow your audience and your industry responds well to research-driven content, Fractl has the marketing chops for your needs.
B2B Heroines: The Content Bureau
As a premier B2B content marketing agency, The Content Bureau works primarily with global technology, venture capital and financial corporations.
The Content Bureau has a high-touch and attentive approach, which makes them a true extension of their client teams. Many of their clients utilize their strategic and creative marketing services all year long rather than solely for one-off projects or campaigns.
As such, the agency’s client list is backed by impressive retention rates. Autodesk has been with the Content Bureau for 21 years, SAP for 17 years, PayPal for 12 years and Deloitte for 10 years. Some of their more recent clientele include Salesforce Ventures, Workday and UiPath.
The Content Bureau complements the high client retention rates with a veteran workforce. More than 80% of their team members have worked for the agency for 10 years or longer, which provides a level of expertise and stability that their clients appreciate.
More fun facts about the Content Bureau: The agency is 100% virtual, woman-owned and 90% of the team members are women.
With a deep appreciation and talent for writing, the Content Bureau assigns a writer, editor and designer to every project. Their process leads to premium deliverables that dazzle in copy and design.
The Content Bureau is an excellent choice for B2B marketers who want a long-term partner to deliver high-quality content and an exclusive client experience.
Digital PR Pros: North Star Inbound
Not every content marketing agency feels at home in the digital public relations (PR) space, but North Star Inbound is plenty comfortable creating “content that journalists can’t wait to feature.”
This agency also specializes in content marketing, SEO services and link-building. The team has worked with clients such as Intuit, Angi, HomeAdvisor and more. On top of that, they’re a woman- and minority-owned business known for quick responses, above-and-beyond service and high-touch relationships.
As the 6-time winner of the NYX Marcom Award for Digital PR and 2-time winner of the Hermes Creative Awards for Digital PR (among other accolades), North Star Inbound helps companies shine.
Bold Storytellers: Toast Studios
“Creative, daring and audacious” are just three words used to describe Toast Studios, a Montreal-based content agency with a lot of personality. Editorial and SEO content, podcasts, videos, virtual events — you name it, this agency does it. The team even performs audience analysis to make sure their content appeals to the right people.
L’Oréal, Ubisoft and Service Canada are just a few of the clients who have benefited from a partnership with Toast Studios. This agency is one of Clutch’s top content marketers for 2023 — and one of our favorites for their mission statement alone (“Let’s save the world from bad content”).
Google-Friendly Creators: ClickGiant
As the name implies, ClickGiant can help you get more clicks on your online content. The agency develops custom SEO marketing campaigns with a Google-friendly approach to content creation.
ClickGiant stands out from other SEO agencies because they focus on providing affordable digital marketing services for small businesses. In their own words, ClickGiant says “We have monthly plans starting at, roughly, what a nice steak dinner for two costs … with wine of course.”
This small-business support is further emphasized by the agency’s ability to offer additional services as needed, including website design and social campaigns.
ClickGiant serves clients nationwide across sectors, including Scout Boats, Huk Gear, Nectar Sunglasses, Alder Energy, Vintage 1946, Trident Family Dentistry, Ayers Family Law and others.
Web Design Aficionados: Red Spot Design
If you’re looking for an agency with tons of experience in web design, Red Spot Design wants you to know they’re all about hitting the target. Even their logo is a bright red bullseye.
The agency’s impressive website design portfolio spans industries from construction and real estate to legal and medical. They provide a suite of digital marketing services, including SEO, social media management and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising.
Clients have included American Heritage Air Conditioning & Heating, UTSW Kidney Cancer Program and others — and the agency is in UpCity’s top digital content marketers for 2023.
While the company works with clients from multiple locations, the team is a big favorite in their Texas hometown. Red Spot Design is the No. 1 rated Dallas web design company on Google, UpCity, Facebook, Clutch and more. They even host local clients such as Dallas Custom Closets to act as references.
Multidisciplinary Visual Communicators: IGW
IGW stands for infographic world so you can guess where their strengths lie. The full-service visual and digital marketing company has a talented creative team that can produce various design assets, including infographics, illustrations, video marketing, 3D animations, interactive content, presentation and report design, website design, social media visuals and more.
With experience in inbound marketing, SEO and digital advertising, IGW also has the capacity to build the strategy behind the visuals and increase a brand’s online visibility from multiple angles.
IGW works with a broad range of B2C and B2B clients, generally at the enterprise and mid-market size though they partner with small brands as well. The agency touts the work they’ve done for well-known companies like General Electric, Merck, ESPN, Embassy of Spain, Nike, Pepsi, Google, Paramount, World Health Organization, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.
The agency has a spot in Clutch’s top 10 content marketing companies and receives positive customer feedback about their hands-on, personalized approach and high-quality deliverables.
For brands in need of visual marketing that drives leads and revenue, IGW is sure to impress.
Tiny Yet Mighty: Eucalypt Media
Eucalypt Media is a content marketing agency with broad experience and services. They’re intentional about being a small agency that can deliver at the same level as the biggest players while treating every client as a valued partner.
Due to their smaller size, Eucalypt Media complements their internal expertise with a veteran team of freelance writers, editors, designers and videographers.
The agency’s broad services generally fall into 4 areas: strategic marketing consulting and audits, results-oriented content marketing retainers, a la carte content creation and execution, and thought leadership campaigns.
Eucalypt Media practices what it preaches — especially when it comes to thought leadership. The agency’s founder, Kathryn Hawkins, frequently contributes to publications like Inc. magazine and ranks among the top content marketers to follow on social media.
With accolades like Clutch Global Leader in content marketing for the past 7 years, Eucalypt Media as an organization has also earned a strong reputation in the industry.
The agency works with a variety of business sizes and sectors, including startups, higher education and software. Their key clients include Atlassian, Intel, Bizo, Husson University, The Atlantic, Instore, YarcData and Boston Consulting Company.
If you’re in need of a broad range of content marketing services, Eucalypt Media should be on your shortlist.
How Do Content Marketing Agencies Earn Top-Tier Status?
We don’t take these rankings lightly because picking a content marketing agency to work with isn’t a light decision. When you’re looking for a partner in getting your brand’s story out there, you want to know that you can trust their team to deliver on their promises and help you meet your business goals.
So what makes some agencies better than others? Ultimately, it’s their ability to produce the results you need. Even better if they’re a step ahead and can offer the ideas, recommendations, and results that Future You hasn’t realized you need yet.
When a content marketing agency earns top-tier status, it’s generally for a combination of reasons. Here are some of the notable ones to consider:
Every marketer knows the power of a convincing testimonial. If others in your shoes are happy with the agency’s results, you can feel better about the odds that you will too.
Check out the agency’s website for client testimonials and case studies for examples of their work. Next, look for their profiles on rating sites like Clutch.co or G2 for vetted agency reviews.
Content Creation Rockstars
When you’re interviewing a potential agency partner, be sure to ask about their team of content creators. This will help you understand their creative approach, capacity and ability to meet your preferences.
Some questions to jot down before meeting with your next candidate:
- Do they have a mix of expertise, from industry veterans to newbies with fresh takes?
- Are their content creators full-time employees or freelancers?
- How many writers and designers do they have on staff?
- Do they have a dedicated video team?
- Is there a high turnover rate in their creative teams?
- Does their team have experience creating the kind of assets you need?
Project Management Experts
The best of the best aren’t just creative, they’re also wizards at running projects smoothly. From asking the right questions at the beginning of a project to never missing a beat on next steps, top content marketing agencies keep your teams aligned and respect everyone’s time and energy.
Signs of these project management skills include a dedicated point-of-contact from the start, statements of work and expected deliverables, projected milestones, regularly scheduled check-ins and clearly defined expectations for both sides of the partnership.
The ideal content marketing agency for your company will have relationships with the right people, vendors and influencers who can amplify your message. In other words, a top-tier content agency team doesn’t just create killer content, they also know how to distribute it widely for worthwhile results.
Consistent Feedback Loop
A marketing agency’s internal communication should be as clear and effective as the work they produce for clients. Make sure you’re picking an agency that’s transparent and timely with their feedback.
What’s more, a great content marketing agency knows when to say no and how to back up their responses with data and expertise. This thought partnership will push your brand to better results and it will also help establish boundaries in your agency-client relationship where appropriate.
Analysis and Reporting
If a content marketing agency is worth its salt, their team won’t rely on lip service to prove they’re doing good work. Their marketing services will include a clear process for reporting on metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs).
Not only will this clearly define how your content is performing and inform next steps, but it will also help you speak to the data the next time leadership checks in on your marketing efforts.
Choosing The Right Agency For You
While many of us would agree on certain qualities and marketing services that every top content agency should have, hiring the right content marketing agency is a decision that’s unique to your needs and preferences.
For example, if you already have a rockstar in-house social media team, you might not want to choose an agency that specializes in social media marketing. On the other hand, if your interns are running your accounts, you might be on the hunt for an agency that can provide consistent social media strategy, execution and reporting.
Your choice may also be influenced by the agency’s subject matter expertise, especially if your industry requires insider knowledge to create content geared toward your audience.
The size of the agency can also indicate important factors like their capacity to meet your needs, expected turnaround times, level of personalization and variety of available marketing services.
When in doubt, ask yourself questions like these to guide your decision making:
- Is the agency equipped to fill the gaps in your in-house team?
- Can the agency support your goals and fulfill your top priorities?
- Why do you need to outsource content creation?
- Does the team’s working style complement your own?
- Do they have expertise in your industry?
- Would a local, national or global agency work better for your needs?
- Do their client testimonials and reviews boost your confidence in their work?
- How far will your budget go towards their services?
- What differentiates them from other content marketing agencies?
In the end, choosing your match made in content marketing heaven comes down to the agency’s ability to meet your desired outcomes. Trust your gut and get ready to make big marketing moves with the newest extension of your team.
Editor’s Note: Updated February 2023.