No business owner has the time and skill to do everything themselves—at least not successfully. So they often look to contractors or agencies for support in areas like accounting, administration, HR functions or marketing.
Handing over your company’s marketing to someone else is a big deal. We get that. Maybe you’re not ready to let go of this personal part of your business. If you’re not, that’s okay. But if you’re overwhelmed and not sure what to do, a marketing agency can be a huge asset.
So as you weigh your options, here are some pros and cons to think about:
Do it Yourself
Pros: For a business owner who is somewhat tech-savvy and a good communicator, doing your own marketing is probably preferred. Especially if you enjoy it. If you are the “face” of your company, it only makes sense that the communication should come directly from you. You control the message. You are the voice. You are the brand. Many business owners handle this part of the business with great success. If you have the skill, the passion and the time to dedicate to it, handling your own marketing can—and should—be done this way.
Cons: Time is a precious commodity for a business owner. There’s just not enough of it. Business owners wear a lot of hats and are juggling multiple responsibilities all day long. Handling crises and putting out fires will understandably take priority over getting your newsletter out or publishing social media posts. The result? Despite your best efforts, it just doesn’t get done.
Marketing is a full time job. It requires that you have solid writing skills, the knowledge of how to set up a marketing strategy, and the time to execute it. It requires use of apps and programs that schedule your social media, capture the contact information from a lead generation tool, and track the analytics of your email marketing efforts. Marketing DIY means you’re a creative with good writing skills and an analytical mind. If you’re not, then it doesn’t get done, or worse, it doesn’t get done right.
Outsourcing to a Marketing Agency
Pros: Marketing agencies have a team of people that specialize in all things marketing. They’ve had years of experience and are passionate about what they do.
The good ones will take the time to understand your business, research your industry, and work endlessly to find your voice. They act as a partner in bringing your ideas and ambitions to life. A good marketing agency will handle the details the right way, faster and more efficiently than an inexperienced business owner could.
The right agency will generate enough revenue to pay for itself and more. Handing your marketing over to an agency gives you the freedom to focus on the big picture, manage the day-to-day, and personally deal with issues or problems that come up in the business.
Cons: When you outsource any aspect of your business, you give up the hands-on control, and that’s hard for some business owners to stomach. You are trusting that someone else will represent you and your business in a positive light, stay true to your brand and be an extension of you. This requires some serious vetting.
How to Hire a Marketing Agency
If you do decide to outsource your marketing, here are some things that will make it a successful experience.
- Look for an agency that offers the services you need. Some agencies specialize in graphic and website design, others concentrate on search engine optimization. Some do it all. Research their websites to see if they offer the services you need now and in the future.
- View their work. Find samples of work they’ve created for clients that are similar to what you need.
- Read client testimonials. The best way to identify a quality agency is to read what their customers are saying about them.
- Set up an interview. It’s a big decision, so take the time to know who you’d be working with. Don’t just meet the sales rep—ask to talk to the person/people who will be doing the work. What is their experience? Have they worked in your industry?
- Ask about their onboarding process. How will they get to know you, your business and your brand? What are their deadlines and turnaround times?
- Define your expectations. Set goals, objectives and timelines. How often will you be in communication? Will you be reviewing everything they create before it publishes?
Why Choose Clay
When you outsource your marketing needs to Clay, we consider ourselves an extension of your company. We work with some of the most talented and committed marketing professionals in the industry, and will match each project to your brand as if you created it yourself.
We’re a quick study. We have gone to great lengths to know our customers’ pain points, and develop a deep understanding and appreciation for the challenges in their industry. We are committed to frequent and meaningful communication, keeping you as involved and as informed as you desire to be. When you win, we win.