Should you hire an external marketing consultant or a FTE employee to help with your marketing?
Having worked in the corporate environment for 15 years I was consistently faced with whether or not I should hire a marketing consultant or have an internal employee handle the marketing tasks. While in some instances it made sense to have an internal person handle the marketing tasks in other circumstances, it was a better business decision and more cost-effective to outsource marketing activities.
Top reasons to hire a marketing agency:
1. Expert advice and knowledge. One of the main reasons I outsourced marketing was because I needed to find an expert that had specific knowledge about a marketing task or strategy. Expert marketing advice and knowledge are two of the main reasons most companies seek a marketing agency.
2. Act as independent contractors. At some point every company is faced with a decision to outsource or keep jobs in-house. While marketing consultants work directly with their clients, they do not require the same supervision as an employee doing comparable tasks. Marketing agencies act as independent contractors that are required to perform in accordance to the consulting contract thus eliminating time management and organizational lability.
3. Objectivity. Acting as a third-party, marketing agencies bring with them objectivity and often a fresh point of view. The marketing outsiders can sometimes bring new life into an idea or project due to their vast marketing experience and expertise.
4. Dedicated time. Let’s face it, time is precious to everyone however, marketing consultants have dedicated time they are responsible for supporting their clients. Internal marketing departments are pulled in so many directions it can make it difficult to perform some marketing tasks.
5. Provide flexibility. For most successful agencies, your marketing consultant will make themselves available to you when they are needed. This provides you with the flexibility to provides projects to your agency when needed.
6. No long-term commitment. Compared to hiring an employee (unless you’re located in an at-will state), there are no long-term commitments by using a marketing agency. If you have a particular project that needs to be worked on, a simple phone call and a signed contract will suffice.
7. Cost effective. Hiring a marketing agency may seem like an intimidating cost endeavor however, when you add up the costs associated with a full-time equivalent (FTE) employee your costs are remarkably lower. Why you ask? A marketing agency doesn’t require health insurance, vacation time, 401(k) plans or other benefits provided to employees. I have illustrated a cost comparison of hiring an agency versus an employee.
When faced with the problem to outsource or hire internally, you always need to make sure that it supports your business objectives and is the most cost-effective option for your organization. The top reasons organizations hire marketing agencies are some of the same reasons I outsourced marketing efforts over my 15 years working as a corporate marketing manager.