When it comes to evaluating your business marketing, you have no doubt considered the idea of a hiring a marketing manager as opposed to outsourcing to an agency.
Recently I was asked if I recommended a business to hire a marketing manager, or if they were best to outsource. My response was very much along the lines of below.
Having been a marketing manager earlier in my career, I know too well the limitations of trying to wear every hat in the marketing department - the social media manager, website designer/updater, email marketer, designer, strategist etc. Needless to say that I still needed to call on experts to assist with specialist activities, which meant more $$ for my boss.
So let's take a look at why hiring an in-house marketing manager might not be the best solution after all...
Cost: A in-house marketing manager will cost you anywhere from $60,000 + per annum as well as additional costs such as superannuation and increased Work Cover premiums. The beauty in outsourcing is that you decide what you spend - set a budget and pitch it your agency (or us!) to work towards. As an example, $40,000 + GST per annum can cover the roll-out of your marketing activities including any advertising spend/media.
Hours: Hiring an internal staff member would give you 38 hours per week at your disposal, but in our experience, individuals slip into a comfort zone of taking x4 longer to complete tasks. The way we work on the contrary is that we are contracted for a fixed price on projects – if we go over hours, it does not cost you a cent. Many agencies may work the same. We are also accountable to achieve results. If we don’t, we risk losing you to another agency – so there is more at stake and therefore it is in our best interest to achieve the best results for you at all times.
Skills: Whilst a marketing manager may have strong skills in a particular area, you are essentially contracting them to wear every hat. What you end up with is diluted results over a range of strategies – Jack of all trades, master of none. Often a marketing manager still needs to contract agencies to quote on and implement specialist marketing strategies such as Facebook Advertising, Google Adwords, SEO, Graphic Design etc. This can quickly escalate your costs to $100,000 + per annum.
The Creative Collective’s unique business model means that unlike other agencies, we don’t have a few full-time staff responsible for delivering all services. Be mindful of this when sourcing an agency.
Instead, we have focused on building our model around some of the best people in their industry. We offer a flexible working environment which makes us an attractive employer to highly skilled and highly entrepreneurial specialists. What this means for our clients is that we hand-pick our project team based on the service and skill required. Need social media, you’ll have a social media specialist that just does social media and has been doing so since its been around. Want Google Adwords? No worries - we have an Adwords specialist that has even trained Google!.
The project is brought together by your project manager who coordinates, strategises and ensures that the project is seamlessly brought together. We provide monthly reporting with the entire team and 100% transparent results – nothing to hide – pure results driven. And the best news? It won’t cost you a cent extra.
In-house tasks: There will always be some tasks are easy for you to implement in-house, keeping them cost affective. Such things might include email marketing, event coordination etc (depending on your marketing plan).
An in-house marketing manager can include these as part of their role, however they are just as easily implemented by admin or IT staff with minimal training. So think carefully about whether anyone currently employed in the business has capacity to take on tasks in their role. Doing so will save you thousands, and staff members are usually more then happy to diversify their role and take on new responsibilities.
The Creative Collective is extremely forthcoming and honest when it comes to identifying what tasks/strategies are best implemented internally. If it is one of your goals to utilise existing staff members in the roll-out of your marketing strategy, we can help make that happen. When it comes to email marketing for example, we can set-up your email marketing system and then conduct a handover session to your chosen staff member so show them the ropes on managing this in-house.
Training & Professional Development / New Technology & Opportunities: Your marketing manager will more then likely have a degree and may even engage in some professional development over the years however it is almost impossible for them to stay abreast of new technologies, industry changes and emerging opportunities across all marketing channels.
The Creative Collective prides itself on staying at the forefront of new technologies and marketing opportunities. Our specialists are also up to date at all times on changes in their industry and individually invest time every year in their own training and PD within their area of expertise.
Back-up: It is important to consider what back-up you have if your marketing manager suddenly falls ill, leaves or moves on from your company. What back-up do you have to ensure that tasks are completed? What if something is on deadline? What back-up will you have to ensure that the next person can simply pick-up where they left off?
The Creative Collective are 3 deep across all services areas. This means that we have more then 1 specialist in every division of the business and there is always at least 2 project managers (usually me or my business partner Yvette) involved in your project. From a back-up perspective any changes in the team on your project will have minimal impact on your project and there will be no down time. We are accountable for deadlines – always delivering on-time and on-budget.
Reporting & Accountability: In our experience, regular reporting suffers when relying on an in-house marketing manager for the implementation of your marketing strategy in full. The Creative Collective supplies a monthly report and meeting to discuss previous month’s results, strategise for the month ahead and discuss what has worked and not worked. We also know the tricks of the trade and have professional software to help collate key info quicker. The meeting is followed-up with an action plan so that you have a list of any ‘to-do’ items to action internally.
Industry Experience: It is likely that a marketing manager might have experience in a few specific industries at best.
On the contrary, outsourcing to a marketing agency such as us, you will benefit from a portfolio of clients and experience heralding from all industries, sizes and locations. Beyond that, with 2-3 specialists in every service area we are in the fortunate position to hand select the specialist on your project based on suitability and experience with your industry.
Value-adds: You may be able to leverage off your marketing managers existing contacts which is great. But if you are outsourcing, ask the agency you are outsourcing to, what value-adds they can offer you. The Creative Collective for instance is a an award winning and well-connected agency and you will pay no additional fee to benefit from a range of value adds during the course of working together. These include social media shoutouts, newsletter mentions, business introductions, training opportunities etc.
So when if you have been thinking of hiring, consider outsourcing to a marketing agency instead. I truly believe that outsourcing is the best use of a small businesses time and money. We trim the fat and supply lean, results driven marketing solutions; for no more expense, and without the headaches of hiring. Click here to get in touch.