Why you should hire a marketing agency for 2018
Marketing. How does your company view it? Is it your lifeblood? Is it at the bottom of the totem pole? An afterthought? A timesuck? Maybe your marketing just needs some hand-holding and some attention. Maybe it just needs a marketing agency.
We’re told by prospects daily how they have struggled with the decision of whether or not to hire a marketing agency to help to grow their business. We know this internal struggle plagues many businesses as they forecast their future in sales and growth. (Side note: I worked for a large corporation for several years as an in-house marketer. I was one of a two-person marketing team that serviced a 50+ person sales team. I totally understand the conversation and the beckoning of whether additional agency help is needed.)
You may find that you’re weighing your options to make a similar decision. If that is the case, we’ve mapped out many of the common marketing pain points you may be experiencing (some of these may sound awfully familiar) and how an agency might help alleviate those pains in 2018.
“I don’t have enough time to put this project/plan/campaign together.”
When you’re too busy juggling the many tasks on your to-do list, you don’t have to dread starting that new marketing project (because with an agency, someone else is going to do it, and do it well). Doesn’t that feel great? Working with an agency frees up your marketing calendar significantly, and lets you breathe a sigh of relief knowing that you’re going to have high-quality marketing assets, just without the hours it takes to create it.
“We can take on this marketing task, we’ve just never done it before.”
Part of keeping up with the ever-changing marketing landscape is exploring and experimenting with new marketing trends, channels and technology. Odds are, you or your marketing team don’t quite have all the experience to parallel these new changes.
For example, if your business has never used paid Facebook ads, that means that you, or someone on your team, needs to take the time to research strategy, learn how to set up Facebook ads, test different messages and audiences, and test different budgets and settings … all before your marketing department finally establishes a strategy and budget that works for your business. (First, are you sure that your self-taught strategy is the best bang for your buck? Second, this whole process took how many hours, or weeks, out of your team’s schedule? So many questions.)
When you partner with a marketing agency, you partner with experts who explore and use these new tools and strategies daily, and across many different client strategies. Agencies have developed effective methods and a thorough understanding of how to make the best use of these tools to stretch your spend the widest. You partner with an agency for the expertise and for their tried and true methods.
“It took my team two weeks to put that together … while juggling other tasks.”
We know that that weekly planners and calendars are a marketer’s best friends. Staying organized as a marketer is a task in itself, juggling meetings, appointments, on-site visits, asset creation, phone calls, researching new methods, and supporting your other departments. Quite frankly, you deserve a medal for your organization skills. But you have to admit, your capacity as a marketer reaches only as far as you’re able to schedule out in your calendar. Your marketing tasks must be squeezed to fit between other tasks, and sometimes, quality is sacrificed.
Agencies get stuff done. Simple as that. Agency time is 100% task-oriented, so if you task an agency to get stuff done, they will get it done in the time they communicate to you. Period. (The best part is that they aren’t using up time on your calendar!)
A huge perk with using an agency is that they have account managers and project directors who fill their day with scheduling and organizing projects for clients. They help organize calendars so designers, writers and strategists aren’t juggling your marketing project between 15 different things, like your team is. At the agency, they are focusing on one given task at a time, working it through until it gets done. When you partner with an agency, you are buying time on the experts’ calendars, so you know your projects are getting the quality time and attention they deserve.
“Well, we’ve always done it this way.”
If you find yourself making marketing materials a certain way, just because that’s the way you’ve always done it (or have been taught to do it), that may mean it’s time for a fresh set of eyes. Marketing can go stale: it’s a sad side effect that many businesses suffer from (especially if marketing is low on the priority totem pole). Shaking things up a bit and changing some of your marketing operations may be a scary task, especially because of its time commitment. It’s the easier option to keep chugging along as you always have.
The first step to recovering from stale marketing is admitting you have a problem. The second step: bring in some help. Partnering with a marketing agency can really open your eyes to all of the possibilities. Agencies create and strategize all day, every day. Bring in some eyes who are trained to bring light to stale methods.
“We can hire someone for that.”
Once you’ve acknowledged that your marketing may need some help, ] the question of hiring someone in-house, or hiring some outsourced help is a natural follow-up. If a business chooses in-house, there are many considerations that often aren’t fully mapped out, or considered. Timing is one of them. The process of hiring is a long one: creating job postings, promoting the posting to the right audience, accepting resumes, scheduling interviews, scheduling more interviews, hiring, waiting for start dates, company training, industry training, integration into existing systems and processes, AND THEN you can start executing on marketing tasks. (Woof, that even took a long time to type out.) Bottom line: hiring takes time.
Now, outsourcing? Let’s cut that time in half, maybe even a quarter. After finding a credible agency partner, all you need to do is identify your marketing needs, sign a scope of work and go. It’s like magic. Marketing magic.
Another consideration for hiring in-house help is the limited expertise of your hire. Your hire only has the experiences through the companies he/she has worked at. So maybe 3 – 5 companies? The limited resume of one new hire limits the experience in past proven tools and processes. Conversely, when you look to hire an agency partner, you hire a combined pool of experience from a whole team of marketers. This experience comes in many levels, not just simply through the names of clients worked with. This experience comes in proven strategies for social media, website, editorial calendars, implementation and rollout, and even in reporting. You get creative design experience and top-notch project managers. You truly partner for a collection of marketing experience, not just one person’s expertise.
“My company is too focused on our products, services and sales to spend resources on marketing.”
Ah. The classic internal business struggle: marketing versus other departments. Why can’t we all just get along?
This pain point is felt by every. Single. Business. It’s the struggle of how much time and resources do we spend on the products and sales, versus on the marketing. This age-old battle has been fought over for decades in the business world. It wasn’t until businesses started to ask not about marketing versus other departments, but how marketing can grow other departments. Only then, did they find resolution.
Marketing is a necessary element for all businesses. When marketing is positioned as a priority versus an afterthought, businesses begin to uncover the way that sales and marketing really work together, recognizing that both are equal parts of the business. New inbound marketing strategies bring sales and marketing departments together. The binding glue? The buyer’s journey. Both strategic sales and marketing tactics come together to move potential clients and prospects through the buyer’s journey to convert your prospects into a customers.
If your business is stuck on the idea that sales and marketing they work separately (or worse, against each other), then your marketing deserves a little more tender love and care. Give it the attention, time and resources it deserves by hiring a marketing agency.
If you found that any of these pain points hit a little too close to home, maybe it’s time to take a step back and identify how your business can handle some of these challenges. Maybe the time to bring in some agency help is now. And we know just the team for that…