Handling marketing in-house can feel like the only option for small companies with limited budgets. If you’re just starting out and you don’t have a budget for outside help, you may look to someone internally who can “do it off the side of their desk” so to speak. In doing this, you may be able to get by for a while but you’ll most likely never have a cohesive brand or comprehensive marketing strategy that is aligned with your goals and objectives, executed with targeted purpose, and monitored, analyzed, and continuously adjusted. One (or even two) people simply can’t do that kind of work effectively over time.
Why you shouldn’t handle marketing in-house
It’s not your expertise
Marketing isn’t your specialty! Just like you may be an expert in accounting, law, real estate, or retail, advertising agencies live and breathe marketing. It’s what we do best! Marketing can eat up a significant portion of your budget so it’s wise to make sure your dollars are spent as efficiently and effectively as they can be with a team that knows what they are doing.
Lack of a complete skillset
A comprehensive marketing strategy oftentimes requires a multitude of skillsets that may not be available in an in-house setting. Digital, design, media buying, web development, content creation, reporting, and copyrighting are just some of the skills integral to an effective marketing strategy. Most of these are commonplace in an advertising agency on a daily basis.
Lack of experience
When managing marketing in-house, it’s difficult to understand what tactics work or don’t work without giving them a try. A well-established marketing agency has been around the block. We’ve tested and tested and tested again to determine which tactics are best for each type of client or goal. Agencies also have experience in effectively managing budgets, analyzing industry trends, reporting, and more.
Agency costs may be similar to what you’re already spending
Hiring an agency allows you to gain marketing support that can grow with you, and provides access to an entire team of specialized professionals for the cost of a person. The cost of a person, depending on their skillset and experience, can vary greatly. So too can the cost of an agency depending on the scope and breadth of the work being performed. The great thing is you can start with what you can afford and scale up as the business grows.
On the flip side: you may want to handle marketing in-house if . . .
You happen to be a marketing agency
Obviously, if you’re a marketing agency, you’ll want to show off your work and can most likely handle your advertising in-house!
There are budgetary constraints
Advertising campaigns come in all shapes and sizes depending on a client’s needs. The larger and more intricate a strategy, the more it will cost. If you can’t afford to invest in your marketing, it’s probably wise to hold off and develop a plan so that you can. Spending small amounts here and there with freelance help or a handful of third-party providers will never generate sustainable results.