June 6, 2016
Responsibilities and expectations for marketing departments are growing, while their time and financial resources, are not.
Marketers are feeling strapped as they juggle tasks and try to keep their budget balanced. With constantly changing marketing technologies, team members often have to train themselves just to keep up with business needs. Even then, they may still lack the breadth of specialized expertise needed to manage every part of the marketing process. So how can a marketing manager support the team and still deliver results that grow the business?
It might be time to hire an external marketing agency.
Hiring a marketing agency is a big decision. While it has the potential to support growth and provide scalability of resources, only you know whether it is the right decision for your company.
Here are a few of the things you may want to consider before hiring a marketing agency:
Free your team
Hiring an external agency takes pressure off your internal team, which may be managing roles and projects outside its expertise. Seventy-five percent of marketers say their lack of skills is hampering revenue in some way, and 74% say it’s contributing to misalignment between the marketing and sales teams, according to Oracle.
Hiring an agency to support your team will allow employees to refocus on what they are best at while your agency is responsible for bringing on experts who can fill the skills gap.
Stay current on specialized industry trends
Most businesses hire an internal team of generalists because they can skillfully manage a campaign from beginning to end. They understand the intricacies of their industry and business in ways no freelancer or agency can. But a few people can’t possibly follow all of the latest trends in social media, SEO, technology, content marketing, and branding.
An external agency has specialists who are passionate about understanding how changes within their niche create opportunities. They are at the forefront of changing trends and incorporate what they learn into valuable strategies for your company.
Get global insights
You know your business inside and out. Your team lives and breathes it each day. But you may be able to see only a small portion of the larger picture. A marketing agency has access to data from all of its dozens or even hundreds of clients, in a variety of industries across the globe. There is a lot to learn from similar non-competing businesses.
With an outside perspective and tons of data, an agency will be able to help you better understand your target markets and potential customers.
Access the newest technology
Marketing software and technology can be expensive, and often requires tech support and expertise just to keep them working. Just finding the right software can be expensive. There are hundreds of competing systems and the process of choosing one can take months, not to mention hours of staff training to make it effective.
None of that is your responsibility when you hire an external marketing agency. It is already using a system that it knows and trusts, its employees are trained and ready to hit the ground running when you sign the contract. When new technologies make the current one obsolete, you will not need to worry about replacing expensive equipment and retraining staff. A good agency will run smoothly through change and you may never even notice.
Maintain control and oversight
Some companies hesitate to hire externally due to tough industry regulations where compliance is key. Industries like banking, food manufacturing, law firms, and insurance are regulated and closely monitored. Having industry experience is important in knowing what you can and cannot say about your products.
Fortunately, marketing agencies often use specialized strategists who act as the point person between the internal and external teams. They make it their job to know the rules and regulations of the industries their clients work in. More importantly, they know when and how to communicate with legal departments to get approvals on all outgoing materials. Build into your workflow the proper approval process and you shouldn’t have any problems.
A large team at a small cost
It can be hard to justify hiring a specialized expert to join an internal team. Experts in SEO, video, photography and paid advertising earn more than most marketing generalists. Hiring a full-time specialist doesn’t make sense when the work they do comes in waves, requiring 40 hours a week for a few weeks at a time, and then 10 or less when your priorities shift. While some companies look to temp workers, managing freelancers and contract work can be frustrating and time-consuming.
Working with an agency allows you access to its highly qualified specialists who are brought into the project only when they are needed, and moved to another project after finishing the job. Unlike some freelancers, they are held accountable for their work by the agency so you are guaranteed to get the work done on time and on budget.
If you think working with an external marketing agency could help you grow your business, get in touch with our media experts to schedule a consultation. We can help you decide whether it makes sense for your company.