Outsourced Marketing – The Pros and Cons
A recent survey by HubShout showed that 68% of small businesses across the UK and US, now outsource marketing activities to third party agencies.
The kind of activities that are most likely to be outsourced include:
- Social Media
- Email Marketing
- SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)
- Content Marketing (Blogging, White Papers, Opinion Pieces)
- Slogans and taglines.
Invariably the choice to start outsourcing occurs when in-house teams become over-stretched. Creating a marketing infrastructure is a major investment, so outsourcing becomes a cost effective solution. Most businesses tend to use one or two of the above services in an ad hoc way to start out with, whilst findin the agency that’s right for their needs.
Outsourced Marketing – The Pros and Cons
A number of our clients come to us after having had their fingers burnt with outsourcing in the past. We thought it might be useful, therefore, to provide a list of the benefits of outsourcing your marketing, balanced with a few of the pitfalls.
3 Pros of Outsourced Marketing
1. Outsourcing Saves You Money
If you’ve been managing your marketing in-house it may be difficult to see how outsourcing can save you money. So we always ask our clients to think about the value employees could bring to the business if they were able to focus on their expertise. Outsourcing agencies provide ways to fill your skills gaps, leaving your core team free to do what they do best.
2. Instant Improvement in Output
An outsourced team will focus 100% on the task in hand. And they have the expertise to manage it efficiently to achieve the optimum output. This reduces the amount of management required on marketing briefs, and increases the potential for high quality results. With an outsourced marketing team you create the brief, agree the deadline, and review the results.
3. An Outside Eye on Your Marketing
Quite often businesses approach us because they’ve been managing their own marketing since the start, and have got stuck. They recognise that they need an outside eye on what they’re doing, and some expert advice on improving the impact of their materials. Often the issues we discover are relatively minor. But making small changes can result in an instant improvement.
3 Cons of Outsourced Marketing
1. Outsourced Marketers Don’t Love Your Business Like You Do
If you’re the founder of a business, no-one will ever love it like you. A marketing agency won’t know your sector as well as you, and they won’t understand your customers like you do. It’s important, therefore, that you choose an agency that is willing to start the relationship with a conversation about what it is you do, your customer profile, and your goals.
2. Incompetent Marketing Will Cost You Money
Watch out for the agencies that promise you the earth but don’t tell you how they will achieve it. We always advise our clients to try us out with a single email marketing campaign, for example. This gives both parties an opportunity to test the quality of communication, attention to detail, adherence to deadlines and quality control. If you’re happy with your test job, you can move on to bigger briefs.
3. Outsourced Marketers Aren’t in the Office With You
One of the unforeseen problems of outsourcing can be getting hold of the people working on your project. It’s important to agree the reporting process right from the start. Some of our clients need regular updates – so we schedule a 5 minute call every day if that’s what they need. Others prefer a hands-off approach, so we’ll organise a Skype call midway through the project to touch base.
Find Out the Outsourcing Agency That’s Right for You
As outsourcing grows, more and more agencies will be eager to offer you their services. It’s important that you find the one that understands and can respond to your specific requirements. If you’re a start-up, for example, you’re unlikely to want to use an agency that works on massive accounts for global brands.
The Outsource Your Marketing team offers personalised marketing services to local businesses that are just starting their outsourcing journey. We’re a very hands-on agency, that’s there when you need us, and willing to take the time it needs to learn your business.