Should you hire in-house or outsource to a digital marketing agency?

Digital360 on 25 September 2017

So you’ve decided to focus on a new digital marketing strategy for your business? Digital marketing is a growing industry that’s helping businesses connect with customers online in new ways. With digital ad spending in Australia reaching $7.4 billion in 2016, these statistics mean that online advertising could make up more than half of all media spending in 2017.

If you’re thinking about how to hire a digital marketer, you’re probably faced with the decision of hiring in-house or outsourcing to a digital marketing agency. Each option has their own advantages and the right choice will depend on your business needs and goals.

First, let’s take a look at the basic services you’ll come across when looking for SME marketing services:

  • Copywriting – Copywriters are salespeople who sell with words. They have a clear understanding of proven copywriting techniques to help businesses increase their sales. Today, copywriters are skilled in many forms of writing for the web. These include writing web copy, blogs, emails, newsletters, social media, product descriptions, white papers and more.
  • Web optimisation – The performance of a website is influenced by many factors such as search engine rankings, web analytics, conversion rates, mobile accessibility and loading times. A marketing specialist will have access to a range of analytical and optimisation tools to detect shortfalls in your website’s performance and be able to resolve issues with a tailored solution.
  • Social media – With access to real-time analytics and data, a social media expert can identify your ideal buyers and develop a content strategy to target their interests, needs and wants. Social media experts have experience across a range of industries and will know which kinds of content get the best results for your business.
  • Designers – You only get one chance to make a good impression. Good web design and user experience have the power to start a meaningful dialogue with the right people. From navigating your website, to seeing your display banner and opening that first newsletter – every effort counts. An experienced designer will know how to align the needs of your customers with your brand identity.

Should you hire in-house or outsource?

Not sure how to hire a digital marketer that will meet your business goals?

Every company has different goals and a certain amount of resources to reach those goals. While a small business may favour the smaller upfront cost of hiring freelancers, a larger enterprise may prefer having a whole team of specialists under one roof.

Let’s take a look at the key differences between hiring in-house and outsourcing to a digital marketing agency.

Option 1: Hiring in-house marketing

An in-house marketing team or individual will focus solely on promoting your business online.

By having someone as an integral part of the team, they’ll quickly adopt your company culture and follow your ideal vision. Team members can share ideas and work together with the marketing department to devise a cohesive strategy that satisfies the business goals.

Unfortunately, having a full-time individual or team can be expensive for SMEs. Depending on the workload you have to offer, you may run out of tasks and be stuck paying full-time wages and benefits for part-time work.

Another downside to in-house marketing is the wide skill set needed. Want to launch a new product with a compelling landing page, then perform an A/B test to identify the best combination of content layout, graphics and call-to-actions? You’ll need a copywriter to write the sales pitch, a web designer to create the graphics, and someone to monitor the performance of the landing page.

If you don’t have a team of specialists on your side, you may not see the full payoff for your marketing efforts.

Option 2: Outsourcing to a digital marketing agency

Whether you need an individual expert, or multi-disciplined team running your marketing campaign – a digital marketing agency has everything you need under one roof.

Digital agencies offer a range of SME marketing services that can be adapted to match the vision and scope of your business. Team members can work together to create compelling campaigns and produce a complete marketing solution to satisfy your goals.

While the upfront cost is higher than hiring an in-house employee, you only pay for the work you need to be done, and you don’t have to pay for employee benefits.

With access to optimisation and analytic tools managed by experienced professionals, agencies can make informed decisions based on user-behaviour and current trends. This data can improve the efficiency for all avenues such as content writing, social media marketing and PPC marketing.

Want to learn more about the range of SME marketing services? Talk to a digital marketing specialist about the right solution for your business.