Digital marketing is no longer an “add-on” to undertake when a business has some extra time to devote to a marketing campaign. No matter if you are using SEO, PPC, or other strategies, creating a brand, a presence, and a voice online is critical to growing any business today.
The first question becomes how to best do it in the midst of everything else that has to be done daily to make sure your business stays open? It’s been hard enough maneuvering through a global pandemic, virtual services, and an uncertain workforce.
The next question is who should spearhead your business’s digital marketing effort? It may already feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day or your staff is stretched thin, making it tough to pass on this critical piece of your business puzzle to one of them. On the other hand, paying a digital marketing agency is an added expense when “extra” may not be in the budget’s vocabulary right now.
This is a good time to get out a piece of paper–or a blank document on your screen–and look at the pros and cons of hiring a digital marketing agency versus trying to do it in-house. Let’s take a look at the most important advantages and disadvantages of each. Then you can confidently decide what will be possible for your business.
An Agency Has the Time
You probably know a digital marketing plan is important. But, it’s always one of those “as soon as I can get to it” aspects of your business. Most often those things don’t get any positive attention simply because you don’t have the time. It’s like an annoying gnat buzzing in your ear.
A digital marketing agency is in business to turn the irritant into a stronger bottom line for your company. They do have the time. The weight of knowing you can’t get to it is lifted from your shoulders; you are then free to build a better product or service as they work behind the scenes to get the word out for you.
An Agency Can Tap Into Their Resources and Expertise For You
Let’s face it: it’s what they do. Much like your own expertise with your product or service, a digital marketing company knows what’s happening in the digital marketplace right away. Having an agency point person who will infuse the latest trends and research into a digital marketing plan for your business and then implement and support it has immense value. More marketing value than you probably have in-house.
There are many pieces of the puzzle of digital marketing and an agency has experts at all of them. Some of those pieces are hard to understand for someone–maybe like you–who doesn’t have the time, interest, or knowledge to grasp it all. Things like Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM), Social Media Marketing, Content Marketing, and Email Marketing.
The agency also has the knowledge of and most likely access to the best marketing software in the industry. As your marketing point person at the agency determines which will be most effective for your business, they will tap into those platforms for you, without you being involved at all. The process moves faster that way and you don’t have any learning curve to overcome for software you have no experience with.
Finally, you don’t have the time, and in many cases, the resources, to attend conferences that introduce new digital marketing tools, trends, and strategies. Agencies, however, make it part of their business to do so. They then incorporate those into your digital marketing efforts for you.
An Agency Can Track the Analytics and Fine-Tune Your Campaign Immediately
It’s one thing to implement a process or resource to build your business but it’s quite another to gather the data and then know what it is telling you. And if a particular part of your digital marketing plan isn’t working, it’s important to know that quickly so you’re not wasting money on it.
A digital marketing company crunches the numbers continually and then is prepared to make adjustments right away. It’s in their best interests to do so because they aren’t successful unless you are successful. They pay attention to metrics from valuable tools like Google Analytics for things like visitor count to your website, new visitors, sources of visitors, bounce rates, and most importantly, how many visitors responded to the call to action to buy. As a business owner, your willingness to do the number crunching is probably fairly low, for many reasons. An agency does that all day for you.
There are obviously many positives to hiring a digital marketing agency to handle your digital presence. What are the negatives?
An Agency Doesn’t Know You and Your Company As Well As You Do
You built your business to where it is today for a reason. Very often that reason is personal to you. Your entire life in many cases is devoted to bringing your product or service to those who need and want it.
A digital marketing agency may know your industry but it doesn’t know you. It does take some time for them to understand who you are and what your mission is in a more specific, personal way. If they don’t take the time to do that, whatever digital marketing plan they devise for your business won’t connect to you. You will sense that and you may even believe they don’t care to know you. The prognosis for success isn’t good or it may take longer to develop than your budget can withstand.
An Agency May Not Know Industry Specifics
Depending on the agency, they may not know your industry. Unless they are an industry-specific marketing agency specializing in your industry, they will have a learning curve as they begin diving into what will work for your business and your target market. One of the things you don’t have is time for them to learn what you already know.
An Agency Has Other Customers
You may not be at the top of their “to-do” list every day. Even if you have a personal account rep assigned to your business, the rep has other accounts that take their time and attention. Depending on the size of the agency and their pricing structure, you may be low on the list every day if your billing is not as much as other companies. You aren’t paying for distracted or inattentive representation.
Professional Digital Marketing, Done Correctly, Is Worth It
What did your Pro-Con worksheet uncover? Are you willing to spend the money on professional digital marketing to get expertise and measurable results? It’s a personal decision in the framework of your business and your goals, as well as your budget.
The best choice is to start with an industry-specific digital marketing company like My KPI that treats its customers like the most important business on its client list, every day. We will tailor a marketing campaign to you and your business and deliver the results you are looking for.
Contact us at My KPI now to get started!