Consider instead where a $2500 price point puts you.
I use a selling technique called Monetizing The Problem, and in that process I get the prospect to calculate the size of their problem. Then I charge 5-10% of that figure. There's never any resistance, because they see where the number comes from, how it's based on reality--and a number THEY came up with (not me).
So here you are at $2500. Let's be conservative and say that's 5% of the size of the problem. Meaning you are trying to help them make $50K in sales over the next year.
What kind of a business has a revenue goal of $50K?
A sole proprietor who's just trying to get by?
Is that your target customer?
Really think about this. A serious SME won't play at the $2500 price point, because it's too low. They know the vendor can't commit enough resources to do the job they really need done. For instance a business with only four high-value employees plus the owner needs to bill at least $60K A MONTH to survive!! Why would they let you touch their marketing collateral (that's their website) for a mere $2500?!
Stay at $2500 and you're attracting a really low level of client. If you have the horsepower to achieve more with the skills you have, then I highly recommend going after a better class of customer.
You shouldn't expect much for $2500. That wouldn't pay the salary of a low level marketing person for a month. And that wouldn't include expenses and benefits. For $2500 you can get an okay DIY package that may take you several months to learn.
I charge many of my customers a minimum of $5000 per month plus from 12 - 25% new revenue for a limited time tied to what we bring in. A real marketer is not going to work for free. And in marketing you get what you pay for because great marketers know what they are worth and don't waste their time with low ballers.
Michael Von Irvin
The Greatest Marketer In The World
Every customer might expect different things depending on what their needs are. That's kind of like asking what kind of story people expect from an author for $15. All kinds of stories are worth $15, and of course some are only worth $0.99. It's your job to create your story (marketing package) that the customer believes is valuable for the price.
I will be awkward here and suggest you ask yourself:
Is the 2.5k I am considering spending going to give me the neccssary strategy, resources and direction that I require to be successful after the one off project has ended.
Note down everything you need to answer the question above. This is your brief to an agency.
If the agency can't deliver what you need, the cost is irrelevant.
From a North American agency you won't expect a serious effect on your BOF results of your business.
As mentioned in other answers $2500 is a salary of an entry-level marketing specialist.
When it comes to offshore agencies, you can expect bunch of things getting done with this monthly budget. Since the salaries in Eastern European and Asian countries are much lower in $s
The most important thing you want to get as a value out of this budget is your S.M.A.R.T goal. How many leads does your business need? How many customers you need in next quarter? Next year?
How much % you need to increase your conversion rates? Do you need to cut your bounce rates of your website?
If you have an answer to what do you want to achieve, then request a custom plan from the marketing agency how $2500 is going to contribute to your goal.
How they are going to measure it? Does quality matter for you as much as the quantity?
Get also some specific case studies on how $2500 budget retainer helped companies like yours.
Disclaimer: I am an owner of an agency with 26+ employees. Here is what your get with us with $2000 monthly budget and for $3500 and $5000 respectively if you choose to work with us
Call me if you have more specific advice and consultancy
If you own a small business and $2,500 is all you can afford for marketing services, then you'll just have to accept that you will either get mediocre or below-average service, or you won't get all of the services that you want.
I own a full service marketing agency that offers all types of design, branding, consulting, marketing and content services at reasonable prices that won't break your budget. http://www.bloominari.com Our best package is $5k but we offer a $3k package that might suit your business well. We also allow customization and flexible packages, so you can get all of the services you want and not pay for the services that you don't want. For this, I can give you a project estimate for free: http://www.bloominari.com/contact/request-project-quote
I know that successful marketing is all about researching your target audience, monitoring competitors to know what works, reaching your audience correctly and speaking to your audience in a language they understand. Let me know if I can help you in any way and best of luck to you!