Learn how to use outsourcing marketing services to help boost your sales and reduce costs.
Outsourcing marketing services can help a startup to an enterprise company by improving web traffic, leads, sales lead conversion, and higher sales close rates, and more.
You will want to seek a hybrid marketing agency like Matrix Marketing Group. These new digital marketing agencies are beginning to rule the marketing world.
These marketing firms are tech-savvy, offer integrated digital marketing services and marketing plans, hire and training the top talent, understand social media and social selling, and drive more sales with highly tuned marketing programs.
Boards, CEO’s, CMO’s and investors are starting to ponder – could I get better marketing results if I partnered with a marketing agency? But, how do you know when it’s time to stop doing it yourself (or delegating it to an overworked support person)? Here are eight ways you know it’s time.
Here are eight ways you know it’s time to hire a marketing agency:
- Sales are Stagnant
- It’s Not Getting Done
- You Don’t Enjoy Marketing
- You’ve Realized You Don’t Have the Skills
- The Sales Department is Complaining of “No Good Leads”
- Your Marketing Results are Hit or Miss
- You Wonder What is Working
- You’d Love to Hire a Complete Marketing Team, but Lack the Budget
Read on to learn more about the benefits of employing a marketing agency.
The Benefits of Measuring a Successful Marketing Strategy
Do you want to increase sales? Do you want to control your marketing cost?
In today’s unpredictable economy, companies are trying to find new and innovative ways to keep the marketing momentum going and growing, while dealing with budget cutbacks and dramatic fluctuations in the market.
Smart companies know that they can’t stop their marketing activities – especially if they plan on establishing long-term value in their business.
So, where do they turn when marketing is necessary, but resources, expertise, focus, and funds are scarce? They find the answer in outsourcing marketing services. Companies can realize the following benefits of outsourcing marketing services:
INTRODUCTION TO MARKETING OUTSOURCING SERVICES
- The purpose of this article is to outline the benefits that companies can achieve by applying an outsourced strategy to their marketing needs. Given that the human capital and staffing model has changed and outsourcing is gaining increased acceptance as a standard business strategy, we believe that marketing outsourcing is being used at an accelerated rate. Firms can’t find great talent.
- This document is based on our experience, research in the outsourcing market, and discussions with CEO’s, presidents, owners, board members, marketing managers, and human resource executives.
- Data from SurePayroll small business customers shows the percentage of their employees who are independent contractors has grown 85 percent.
- Leading companies at the forefront of outsourcing have been in the technology sector. However, this model has shown significant value for broader industries. The spread to other sectors is driven by three main factors: (a) the trend has shifted from the marketing department using outside partners for projects, to the boardroom. It has become a proven business strategy that gives a company a clear competitive advantage; (b) Evidence of the effectiveness of outsourcing will continue to grow, raising the comfort level of top executives in any industry to use this proven, affordable approach; and (c) Organizations are more focused on core activities–that is, things that contribute to the company’s competitive advantage and increase shareholder value. The opposite of core is context–activities that do not contribute to competitive advantage. Context activities should be outsourced.
- This document is based on the best information at the time of creation and is subject to change.
WHAT IS THE STATUS OF OUTSOURCED MARKETING SERVICES?
In today’s business climate, CEO’s, boards, and management teams are cautiously optimistic about the economy and their company’s future growth. They realize they still need to market to drive profitable growth and increase their company’s value, but the financial strings are being tightened. So they want to know their return. Who wouldn’t? Do you know the math?
Most people believe that keeping everything internal will lead to greater efficiency.
There is a definite growing trend, however, for companies, regardless of size or industry, to outsource (which used to be referred to as subcontracting) this is just another element of their business. Outsourcing is not a fad, but clearly, a paradigm shift that can change a business model for the better by using resources outside the organization to perform specific tasks.
This increase is largely driven by just how easy it has become to find companies and people with specialized skills. Technology and the Internet have made it efficient to search out people to do the tasks you struggle to do yourself. Sharing materials have become almost instantaneous as well as cloud computing and web conferencing.
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Your marketing ROI is critical. For you and your company
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The nice thing for both the marketing agency and client, it that they do not have to be in the same city or country. I would with folks all over the world, and some countries I’ve never visited.
If you farm out marketing work like graphic design on brochures or signs for your company, you can see proofs as soon as they’re ready. It’s also very easy to pay for these services online with credit cards and PayPal. Harvard Business School professors Gail J. McGovern and John Quelch documented the trend in an article in Harvard Business Review.
One reason behind the move? While company marketing departments have plenty of talented right-brain, creative types, they may lack the left-brain analytics needed to better understand their customers in today’s information-rich environment. Or maybe it’s the opposite.
Companies often forget to ask the basic question: What business are we in? Too often the need to perform various functions and to keep a business running does not allow management to step back and ask this question. The answer should bring management to the fundamental product or service that generates revenue for the company.
In his book, Living on the Fault Line (HarperCollins, 2000), Geoffrey Moore said, all employees should be focused on core activities—that is, things that contribute to a company’s competitive advantage and increase shareholder value. The opposite of core is context: activities that do not contribute to competitive advantage. Context activities should be outsourced.
For example, your marketing director was hired to develop and coordinate strategies, tactical implementation, and generate more sales leads, all while maximizing the loyalty and profitability of current customers. That’s a heavy workload.
That is the head of marketing’s “core” function. However, over time they have developed a talent for public relations and, as a result, have become the firm’s communication manager too. Those responsibilities (PR manager, Web guru) can be described as “context.”
Most companies handle “context” functions with respect to positioning, messaging, and public relations by allowing them to fall to the marketing department. The problem with “context” is that it often takes on a life of its own and begins to obscure what the “core” should be.
What management needs to consider is the effect that “context” tasks have on productivity, return-on-sales, ROI and the general operation of the business.
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The Result? A beautiful, fast, SEO tuned and mobile friendly website.
Outsourcing marketing services allow businesses to focus on funds and control headcount, allowing a company to hand over responsibility for an outsourced function within clearly defined management guidelines and then monitor future performance.
When you break down the costs of a full marketing department internally, versus the cost of outsourcing marketing services with an external partner, the business case becomes clear.
In a real-world example, a company can see a 15 – 25% revenue improvement in the first year and a 25 – 45% cost savings are immediate. Other benefits that make this a compelling case to look at are:
The trend in marketing outsourcing does not look like it will slow down anytime soon given the stalled pace of hiring in this hot economy. Talent is scarce.
WHAT IS THE VALUE OF OUTSOURCING MARKETING?
- Access expertise in marketing strategy and implementation, as well as creative design. An in-house team may not have developed the skills you need. Outsourcing marketing services to an experienced team that integrates seamlessly into your infrastructure will infuse your organization with new energies and ideas. You’ll introduce fresh and innovative marketing and sales approaches to your customers and business partners. And they are focused only on these disciplines.
- Get an outside perspective on your business. Sometimes you can get too close to your business and not see your marketing strategies, programs, or materials from your audience’s perspective. Even though you may know your business inside and out by living and breathing it each day, your perspective is still one-sided. To market successfully to your current audience – and capture new markets – you need to step out of your shoes and into your target markets’ or customers’. Having a group on the “outside” supporting your needs helps to give you the customers’ perspective, not just your company’s.
- Minimize the impact of marketing staff reductions. You need to continue with projects, but your resources are limited. By outsourcing, you can find qualified, experienced resources that can come in and support your marketing needs so that the effort, money, and energy you’ve already invested do not go to waste.
- Use outside experience with “what works and doesn’t work” scenarios. Whether it’s planning, copyrighting, or designing, the right marketing outsource team will have had experience with a variety of different marketing and communication strategies, techniques, and tools. You can rely on their lessons over the years to find the correct solution for your business challenge.
- Maintain the momentum with critical projects – they’ll never fall by the wayside, drop down the priority list, or become forgotten. Today, people change jobs or are hit with layoffs, while in the middle of projects. When those people leave the company, they will most likely take the project assets with them (in the form of tribal knowledge). When you outsource marketing relationships, you have one centralized team as your partner, and your knowledge assets remain protected and archived for future use.
- Hire only whenever and wherever you need resources (on-demand). Hiring full-time staff can be very costly when you add up wages, insurance coverage, office equipment and supply needs, training costs, etc. Don’t forget to add to the calculation the cost of a bad hire. The commonly referenced cost of a bad hire is 2.5 times the annual salary. In most small to mid-sized organizations, marketing can be outsourced while they focus on the core. Finding an outsourcing partner allows you the flexibility to bring on talented, knowledgeable experts exactly when and where you need them. And you don’t have to manage or train the entire team – the outsourced digital marketing agency does that while you focus on the daily needs of running your own business and generating revenue!
- Cost reductions: Not only does outsourcing save money in salaries and overhead, but the outsourcing partner can also save company money in direct purchases on marketing programs as well (e.g., printing, media buys, advertising, etc.). By leveraging their supplier, a good outsourcing partner can manage to save a company anywhere from 10 to 25% in their overall marketing spending.
- A company can achieve a 25 – 35% decrease in salaries and overhead costs immediately. The base salary paid to employees does not represent the total cost to the company. There is the cost of benefits such as FICA, insurance, workmen’s compensation, pension plans, and profit-sharing plans. Many marketing employees also enjoy incentive and bonus plans. In addition, employers must also pay employees for holidays, vacation, and sick days.
This is accomplished in the following ways:
Typically, there are ten paid holidays each year and a minimum of two weeks of vacation. There are also costs associated with hiring staff, such as job posting and advertising, resume reviews and interviewing expense. When you outsource your marketing functions, you pay only for the work performed.
WHAT RESULTS AND BENEFITS CAN BE ACHIEVED FOR MARKETING OUTSOURCING SERVICES?
Outsourcing marketing allows companies to focus their resources and control their headcount. This form of operations allows the company to hand over full responsibility for the outsourced function within clearly defined management guidelines and then monitor the performance.
Your marketing agency should be able to deliver what you need. For example marketing services like marketing research, SEO, SEM, content marketing, website redesign and design, sales funnels, landing pages, CTA, graphic design, technology, analytics,
When you break down the costs of a full marketing department internally, versus the cost of outsourcing with an external partner, the business case begins to tip in favor of not allowing the “Context” to conceal the “Core.”
The following elements would be common to build out a high-quality and stable relationship in a typical small organization with gross sales revenues of $20 million.
|Description||Annual Salaries & |
|Marketing Web Director||$128,500||NC|
|Total Annual Cost:||$437,500||$120,000 (avg est.)|
That’s a $292,500 savings.
Think about what you could do with that.
Remember it’s a good idea to have a least one person responsible for marketing in the organization. I used the VP, Marketing. I keep his or her salary in the organization.
The table illustrates the realized cost savings of 51.57 percent. Consider the example of a high-performance marketing partner that offers you results, flexibility, and reduction in staff and overhead.
Companies can typically have equal if not better results while maintaining product and service quality for a fraction of the cost by turning to an expert in sales and marketing. And what is the cost of a bad hire?
The commonly referenced cost of a bad hire is 2.5 times the annual salary. In most small to mid-sized organizations, marketing can be outsourced while they focus on the core. Cost is the most popular reason for outsourcing. You get an entire team of experts, a proven system, and regular accountability…all for less than the price of hiring one employee.
However, strategic reasons such as improving company focus on core business and improving quality are next. On the revenue side, with a professional outsourcing company, you can see anywhere from 15 – 25% sales revenue gains.
The marketing partner you choose is important and should have a blend of business acumen, sales and marketing know-how, and creative insights. The team should be able to put together a holistic marketing strategy that will allow them to coordinate a complete solution to drive profitable growth for you quickly.
By carefully synchronizing strategies and coordinating tactics and their use, you and your outsourcing partner can create high impact campaigns that generate more new customers, while maximizing the loyalty and profitability of existing ones.
Listed below are just some of the key benefits:
EVALUATION PROCESS FOR MARKETING OUTSOURCING SERVICES
Step 1 (Internal Assessment): The first step is to determine what exactly you need. Evaluate your current staff for specific skills and experience in marketing and communications.
If there are select staff members who possess such skills, review their current role on the team to determine if they can take on other responsibilities without overwhelming them or placing them on unfamiliar grounds. Here is a list of questions to evaluate your internal team.
WRAP UP ON OUTSOURCING MARKETING SERVICES
This paper shows how leading organizations use marketing outsourcing as a business strategy, to gain a competitive advantage, and grow profitably. Listed below are just some of the key benefits.
The degree of these results will increase over the next 12 – 18 months as:
Matrix Marketing Group focuses on business results and best practices that are currently taking place today and in the future. We see the following trends occurring in your industry:
Matrix Marketing Group provides marketing outsourced services, specifically designed to help organizations identify specific actions to initiate or improve their sales and marketing efforts. To find out more please call us at (720) 795-9766 or go here to schedule a meeting.
Now that was easy right?