It’s not easy running a startup or small business. You face numerous challenges on a daily basis, and time is limited. So how do you juggle everything, especially when digital marketing has become a top priority for all businesses, regardless of their size or niche.
In 2022, terms like digital strategy are taking over the marketing world. And as more businesses invest in digital marketing, competition is naturally getting tougher.
Typically, there are two ways companies organise their marketing activities. They either have internal marketing resources or hire an external team to do the work for them.
In this article, we will analyse the second solution and help you decide if hiring a marketing agency makes good business sense.
What is a Marketing Agency?
A marketing agency or marketing company is a team of professionals that can help organise and implement a marketing plan. Such a plan will eventually help a business achieve certain goals.
So, you can think of a marketing agency as a campaign partner that can help your business take advantage of digital marketing opportunities. For example, you may want to optimise your website for Google using the latest SEO trends or improve your email marketing communications or sales conversions. An agency can help you with these types of objectives.
A Marketing Agency’s Main Responsibilities
To examine what a marketing agency does, let’s have a look at the four main responsibilities:
- Planning phase: The team gets to understand the initial marketing needs and objectives of a client, and then conducts market research.
- Implementing different marketing approaches: After the planning phase, the team builds a tailored marketing strategy for the client. This can include TOFU (Top of Funnel), MOFU (Middle of Funnel) and BOFU (Bottom of Funnel) approaches to promotion.
- Result evaluation: A data analyst monitors the strategy via analytics, A/B planning, ROI measures, etc.
- Readjusting efforts: At the end of a predetermined timeline, the team collects data and readjusts the marketing strategy (if needed) in a constant cycle of improvement.
Now that we’ve examined what a marketing agency is and what it can do to help your business, let’s have a look at the main pros and cons of this option.
Advantages of Hiring a Marketing Agency
Hiring a marketing agency could result in a valuable partnership. The most significant advantages of such a partnership are:
1. Value for Money
Contrary to what you may think, hiring a marketing agency will likely save you money. There are two ways to look at this: time and value.
If the agency saves you time and can do things more efficiently, that has saved you money. So too, if the agency has specialised skills that make them more efficient and they know how to maximise results, then that is improving ROI.
This is especially true for startups and small businesses that usually don’t have an in-house team of marketing professionals. In such a case hiring a marketing agency makes a lot of sense.
2. Adding Professionals to Your Team
During the planning phase, the team will identify opportunities in your niche. From content marketing and SEO to paid advertising and web development, a marketing agency has usually tried it all, so they’ll know what to do. In other words, a marketing agency’s expertise can help develop a strategy that works best for your business case.
3. Improving Your ROI
Chances are that you have already allocated a budget for marketing purposes. Well, a top-notch marketing agency will help to optimise your marketing efforts while maximising limited budgets.
Sooner or later, strategies like content creation, SEO and email marketing will help improve your ROI. This will help your business generate new leads while saving money.
4. Saving You Time
We know that developing a marketing strategy internally sounds ideal. But in most cases, you do not have the time to do it. Outsourcing will automatically save you time and give you access to numerous marketing tools (analytics, keyword research software, etc.). This is very important regardless of the type, size or niche of your business.
Disadvantages of Hiring a Marketing Agency
Even though hiring a marketing agency comes with plenty of perks, in some cases, it might not be the best option. For example, if your company already has an in-house marketing team, hiring an agency is a significant additional expense.
However what if you have an internal team that is inexperienced or has skill gaps? What do you do?
In this case, even larger companies can benefit from the guidance of a specialist from time to time. When they do they usually hire a professional consultant and not a marketing agency.
Another pitfall is when a marketing agency is not familiar with your niche or services/products. Of course, a top-notch team will start by thoroughly researching your market (industry, competitors, opportunities, etc.). But this will probably take some time.
Now that we have explored both the pros and cons of hiring a marketing agency, let us answer the initial question. Are marketing agencies worth the investment?
Making your Choice: Should you Invest in Outsourcing to a Marketing Agency in 2022?
Let’s start by mentioning the importance of digital marketing. With nearly 5 billion active internet users, and recent research showing that about 25% of the global population buys products and services online, the possibilities of digital marketing are endless.
But is hiring a marketing agency the best choice for your business in particular? Well, that depends.
For example, if you own a startup business and need a professional team to organise marketing tactics such as social media, hiring a marketing agency is a very wise decision. As we have seen, having an outsourced team of professional marketers will save you time and money in the long run.
It is undisputed that digital marketing is the future. Professional marketing agencies have the knowledge and tools you need to improve your marketing efforts. If you want to increase sales or strengthen your brand, a marketing agency can definitely help.
On the other hand, hiring an experienced marketing strategist is the best alternative if you have an internal team and just need to sharpen up results. So consider whether hiring a marketing consultant could be a better option.
Outsourcing can deliver much better marketing ROI. At the end of the day, whether you go with an agency, strategist or consultant, the decision comes down to your business needs and preferences.