Is Outsourced Digital Marketing Right For Your Business?

In 2019 and beyond you simply can not do business without a well thought and executed digital marketing strategy. The challenge though is how do you make it happen. The is a major shift towards outsourced marketing but is it right for your business?

The challenge for many growing businesses is how to implement a co-ordinated digital strategy with potentially limited inhouse resources. 

Their business driver is not always primarily reducing costs (although this can be significant), but instead they are seeking to rapidly “import” functional expertise from the best talent pool without recreating the wheel and trying to developing that expertise in-house.

For some, the speed, cost and uncertainty of achieving functional excellence alone is too high and has way too much risk of failure.

Investing  in the relevant marketing expertise has a higher likelihood of success without the challenges of competing for specialist talent, and the use of precious investment capital that might otherwise be spent on core growth projects.

They know that if they crack it, an effectual and total outsourced digital marketing strategy will help a business:

  • Increasing the  inflow of  highly qualified sales leads. 
  • Raise brand awareness with low cost targeting and remarketing available from the latest digital advertising and remarketing.
  • Convert leads to highly valuable new clients or customers.
  • Generate a stable platform for creating predictable sales and revenue.
  • Decrease time to revenue on new product and service launches
  • Launch new divisions and/or launch into new markets
  • Dominate their marketplace

One avenue for tapping into functional expertise quickly and cost effectively is to outsource all or parts of your marketing function to a digital agency.

Businesses usually use outsourced marketing services because it provides a cost-saving way to accomplish revenue goals quicker than they could get their on their own.

Why would you outsource digital marketing?

While you can use an in-house team, hiring an outsourced digital marketing team can be more effective because:

  • It costs less to use them compared to in-house teams. In many cases, an outsourced option can be a third to a fifth of the cost of hiring, onboarding, training and managing 1 or more internal digital marketers.
  • You are tapping into a team of people with specialised digital marketing skills like search engine optimization, content creation, direct response copy, marketing strategy, facebook ads, linkedin ads, google ads, and social media marketing. A good agency will have a team of enthusiastic, creative experts in their field that you can set loose on your businesses campaigns for a fraction of the cost of 1 moderately skilled internal marketing manager.
  • Having a digital marketing agency help with strategy and campaigns allows you to focus on taking care of your own business – the things you excel at.

The Benefits Of Outsourced Digital Marketing 

1. Reduce hiring costs and hassle.

Outsourcing to a digital marketing agency removes potentially soul sucking tasks (for you but not us) like: 

  • coming up with salary packages
  • writing job specifications
  • dealing with marketing recruiters
  • days and days of interviewing and then deliberation over whether the person will be as good as they say they are!
  • creating employee onboarding programmes
  • creating employee employee training programmes – many business overlook the significant expense of keeping just 1 person current in their skills on the latest digital marketing approaches.

You can save money and time by hiring trained and ready experts instead of employing and onboarding an in-house digital marketing team. 

Outsourcing digital marketing can create better financial flexibility in situations where demand is not stable. 

Outsourcing allows you to scale easily and without any increased business stress. There is no need to hire new employees, invest in infrastructure or build new departments, when you can instantly flex the outsourced arrangement you have – for very little investment.

If considered at the beginning of the relationship,  most outsourcing agreements can be created where the investments are adjusted according to the amount of work or campaigns done done.

Simply put, a business will have to pay only for the effective work done for them and any flexing up or down can be done instantly and without any cost penalty.

2. Speed To Launch And Speed To Revenue

Any decent outsourced digital marketing agency  will have a complete playbook of proven marketing campaigns that can be dropped into your business.

Like the following one for a high value integrated B2B lead generation and sales conversion sales and marketing system.

digital marketing strategy map

Or this marketing playbook for a high converting, revenue creating, ecommerce shopping cart abandonment campaign:

outsourced ecommerce marketing

Or this tried and tested marketing automation sequence complete with lead scoring, email copy and remarketing advertising.

outsourced marketing automation

3. Ongoing Management Of Marketing Staff

If managing a team of digital marketers isn’t the core competency of your business then it’s always going to be a management time suck! 

Bright minds aren’t always the easiest to manage, motivate and get producing to their full potential.

Is that aspect really critical to the success of your business?

What you might find is that the results of the sales and marketing campaigns are critical to your business but the time and hassle of managing staff isn’t. 

Ask yourself if the ability to ‘keep things in house’ is really worth that admin, management time and hassle?

4. Ongoing Management Of Marketing Campaigns

Some companies are seriously under resourced in their in house marketing team.

With a coordinated effort they create and launch campaigns but don’t have the time or ability to manage them on a daily basis.

We very often see paid advertising campaigns that haven’t been touched in 6 months or more.

After we analyse those accounts it’s clear to see that 30, 40, and some times even 50+ of their paid ad spend is being wasted and could have been saved if only the campaigns were being optimised on a daily basis. This one area alone (and we see hundreds of others) could easily have paid for a completely outsourced digital marketing service.

5. Experts Challenging Your marketing strategy.

It is EXTREMELY VALUABLE to have an outside perspective provide input into your marketing strategies.

It’s even more valuable when that input is non biased, not formed of your own internal group think and above all – not afraid to challenge your status quo and point out flaws and/or ways things could be done differently.

What we typically find is the strategic insights, the ability to challenge the status quo and provide a level of simplicity and clarity provides value far in excess of the outsourcing fee.

6. Advising And Implementing The Latest Trends and Technology

Keeping up with new marketing technology is a full time job. We know because we battle with that constantly – and it is our full time job!

We currently live in a time when a piece of marketing automation or artificial intelligence can:

  • Replace the work of  1 or more staff
  • Slash the cost of advertising on different platforms
  • Double or triple conversions at all points in a marketing funnel
  • Shorten the time to revenue on ad camapigns
  • Shorten the sales cycle
  • Analyse your clients and go out and find you the very best prospects likely to buy your services – for little to no money!
  • Provide deailed attribution reports on client/customer acquisition to revenue by channel – like the B2B tracking software we use shown in the image below.

An outsourced digital marketing team provides an always on monitor into the latest efficiencies that could revoloutinise the way you outperform your competition and help you dominate your marketplace.

Oh…I forgot to say…

If you had to pay for these technologies you’d probably be paying more than the investment in a good outsourced digital marketing agency.

B2B attribution analysis

7. Digital marketing agencies actively work to get you positive results to retain your business.

You can expect a good return for investment because outsourced teams work hard to produce meaningful results to keep your business.

Outsourced agencies have learned to be accountable and to provide their partners with reports in which they can justify their tactics, spending and results – in hard ROI, not vanity metrics. 

A decent agency won’t tie you into long term contracts either. You should expect to invest a little time for campaigns to be implemented, tested and refined but after that you should be free to  choose to leave without penalty.

That’s a real time – live or die business relationship and any agency will move rocks to smash your goals.  Their income depends upon it.

That can’t always be said of marketing employees 🙁

What Should An Outsourced Digital Marketing Agency do for You?

1. Strategy Design And Revenue Forecasting

A really good digital marketing agency will take you through a process where they map out your co-ordinated strategy and prepare detailed cost and revenue scenarios.

These should clearly show the impact of different traffic sources, cost per leads, cost per conversions and also the impact of adding in different offers in your sales funnel.

You should never, ever be looking at your campaigns in retrospect. When you plan out a campaign, in advance, using advanced scenario planning you’ll clearly understand exactly what:

  •  Conversion rates at each stage you need to acieve to make the campaign profitable or break even – so you can make money on the back end
  • Potential weaknesses in the campaign where you may need to work on increasing the price or adding in a new offer to make the campaign financially viable

The following image shows a scenario planning scenario where we ar elooking at the impact on the entire camaign of a change from 20% optins to 40% on the front end web optin page.

One simple change results in a whopping 55% drop in campaign profitability.

The following image shows the same marketing funnel where instead of forward planning based on traffic we think we can send to the funnel, we start out with our desired annual profit goal.

This provides us a detailed report of EXACTLY what needs to happen in this campaign to hit our profit target.

Don’t overlook the value of just this one critical imput to realise the value of outsourced marketing.  A research piece has hlighted the shocking fact that as much as 90% of marketers have never been trained on marketing performance and marketing ROI. 

We have. Have your current or intended team?

And another research piece shows only 10% of the respondents can confidently report an ROI on their marketing.

We can. Can your current or intended team?

2. Market Analysis And Deep Competitor Research

A really good digital marketing agency will take you through a process where they map out:

  1. What the marketplace want, desires, and is searching for
  2. What your competition is doing – your competitors and similar businesses in your space have spent thousands or millions of £’s testing and refining what is working now. You and I would be fools to ignore that!

The image below shows some detailed anlytics on salesforce.com most effective paid advertising, their best landing pages and offers. We’d do this for your market too.

And the following image is beginning to anlayse all of their best paid advertising strategies. We’d dive much deeper into pinpointing EXACTLY which ads are the best performing and the exact placements they are using.

Something that is critically important to the success of modern marketing campaigns yet few, if any, in house teams do is to analyse all of the landing pages, lead magnets, free offers and email follow up of the competition.

This information is priceless and should be mandatory for any marketing campaigns. The following image shows a proprietary software we use to pull in all of the emails sent within a competitors campaign. We use this to work out thier hooks, their offer, their best bullet points and their campaign strategies.

We use this to shortcut the time to revenue on our client campaigns.

Something that is critically important to the success of modern marketing campaigns yet few, if any, in house teams do is to analyse all of the landing pages, lead magnets, free offers and email follow up of the competition.

This information is priceless and should be mandatory for any marketing campaigns. The following image shows a proprietary software we use to pull in all of the emails sent within a competitors campaign. We use this to work out thier hooks, their offer, their best bullet points and their campaign strategies.

We use this to shortcut the time to revenue on our client campaigns.

3. Website, Landing Page and Marketing Funnel Build Out 

Most people’s 

This information is priceless and should be mandatory for any marketing campaigns. The following image shows a proprietary software we use to pull in all of the emails sent within a competitors campaign. We use this to work out thier hooks, their offer, their best bullet points and their campaign strategies.

We use this to shortcut the time to revenue on our client campaigns.

Most people’s 

This information is priceless and should be mandatory for any marketing campaigns. The following image shows a proprietary software we use to pull in all of the emails sent within a competitors campaign. We use this to work out thier hooks, their offer, their best bullet points and their campaign strategies.

We use this to shortcut the time to revenue on our client campaigns.

Something that is critically important to the success of modern marketing campaigns yet few, if any, in house teams do is to analyse all of the landing pages, lead magnets, free offers and email follow up of the competition.

This information is priceless and should be mandatory for any marketing campaigns. The following image shows a proprietary software we use to pull in all of the emails sent within a competitors campaign. We use this to work out thier hooks, their offer, their best bullet points and their campaign strategies.

We use this to shortcut the time to revenue on our client campaigns.

4. Content Marketing/Inbound Marketing

Content marketing is one of the biggest lead generation channels for modern businesses but what are the benefits:

1. Content marketing increases conversions.

Research shows that companies who produce consistent marketing content experience conversion rates that are nearly 6 times higher than their competitors who don’t focus on convent marketing.  What the research doesn’t tell you though is that it takes time and effort to get to this stage. Most businesses start and give up before they ever see the  results they could achieve.

2. You can use quality content to educate your customers and clients.

Your prospects have a problem that your business can solve. What better way to educate them about their challenges and your solution than to provide them with engaging content? 

A good content strategy will take a ‘whole of the market approach’ and create content to grab peoples attention at every stage of the buying cycle such as:

1) Solution Aware

2) Problem

3) Unaware and not looking

3. Content can help you build trust with your target prospects.

The more that you educate and provide value for your target audience, the more trust you can build over time. The more trust you develop the more you will be seen as a comfortable and reliable solution provider now and in the future.

4. Valuable content helps you build credibility, authority and expert positioning

When you do content marketing correctly you can really shortcut the time to creating authority positioning. 

5. With great content, you can help move buyers through the buyer’s journey quickly.

5. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

It is ideal to hire a specialised digital marketing agency for SEO because implementing it and keeping track of results is time-consuming for internal teams.

More importantly –  SEO can be extremely risky if you don’t know what you are doing.

Do you want to risk the visbility and good standing of your web assets to an internal team member who really doesn’t understand the implications of what they are doing?

6. Paid Advertising (PPC) Campaigns

Services like Google Adwords and Facebook Ads need frequent fine-tuning, a task you can delegate to a digital marketing agency so you save time and resources. These two marketing channels require a well-planned and executed approach because improper implementation may lose you money.

7. Social Media Marketing

Running a business these days means you need some way to interact with your customers beyond emails and websites. An outsourced digital marketing team can give you precious advice as to what social channels are a match for your business and how you go about doing social media marketing. Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and Youtube all need different skillsets to use effectively and it is best for you to delegate them to a digital marketing agency.

8. Lead generation

LinkedIn prospecting and creating email capture pages are just some of the methods an outsourced digital marketing agency can do for you to generate fresh leads. Facebook page and group maintenance is also a good strategy if you choose to use that platform to grow your list and keep in touch with your customers. 

Outsourced Digital Marketing Might Be A Good Option For You If You Want To:

  • Want to save as much as half the cost of hiring full-time employees and creating a team
  • Want to compliment the skills and spped of implementation of your existing team
  • Value fresh and creative insights on marketing and won’t get offended if your existing strategy, thinking, campaigns and approach are scrutinised and challenged
  • Want to accelerate your time to revenue on marketing campaigns
  • Want to quickly tap into specialists and experts who will deliver results
  • Need access to skills that your current staff do not have
  • Want to flex campaigns and resources up and down without increased or decreased headcount 

Important Things to Know in Choosing a Digital Marketing Agency

There are some vital things to know and steps to take to make sure that you are choosing the right agency for your business. Here are some tips on how to choose a digital marketing agency:

  • Consider an agency that markets themselves using the most up to date strategies they preport to be using with clients
  • Speak to the agency and see how they approach your situation.
    • Do they take the time to understand your situation?
    • Do they have pre-built models that can tailor in your business?
    • What software and planning resorces are they using?
    • Do they offer a part or all of the solution? Many people want to offer just a part of the service such as Facebook advertising without any involvement in how that advertising will be converted to clients.
  • Ask to see what current approaches they are using such as.
    • website/landing page design,
    • SEO,
    • Social media marketing
    • Importantly – PPC through networks such as Linkedin, Google and even outliers like Quora and Reditt.
  • Do they offer measurable results? Can they show their process to demonstrate results?
  • Do they offer you the chance to see and monitor analytics so you can keep track of what is working and what is not. Analytics data is extremely useful in testing and refining your marketing strategy.

Questions to ask a Digital Marketing AgencyHow much does it cost?

You want to see if the agency can work within your budget. Remember that going for the cheapest option (or the most expensive one) is not always best. That’s why you have to ask further questions like:

Who will be my contact point in the agency and what is their availability?

Pick an agency that assigns a consistent person who you can contact for any concerns. 

What are your processes and how would they be tailored to meet my goals in marketing?

Knowing what the agency plans to do to help you meet your goals is important. You would know you are talking to the right people if they can give detailed steps or tactics on how to make your marketing efforts a success.

Have you done previous projects in my niche?

You’d want an outsourced digital marketing agency that operates within your industry. This is vital because then, you would be confident that they understand your target audience.

Can you describe the methods of digital marketing do you use for your own campaigns?

Are they practicing what they preach? Asking this question gives you more insight into how the agency works.

How do you track and generate reports?

Choose an agency that installs analytics, tracks every step, and documents all results for you. 

When will results appear?

Check if the agency gives a reasonable timeframe, compared to your goals. For example, if a digital marketing agency offers you the top spot in Google in “X” amount of days, this is a major red flag. 

Here is a summary of what we have discussed so far:

Digital marketing for your business does not need to be expensive and complicated. Outsourcing to an agency who will do it for you cut your costs and saves you time. You’ll have access to a very talented pool of marketers too.

You should look to hire an agency that, at the very least, offers the following services: content and social media marketing, search engine optimization, pay-per-click campaigns like Adwords or Facebook Ads, and lead generation.

Choosing the best outsourced digital marketing services for your business involves:

  • Picking one located in your area, and is operating in the same or related niche as yours,
  • Hiring a team that works within your budget, has the correct skills for your marketing strategy, and gives you detailed reports along the way,
  • Employing a digital marketing agency that provides detailed information about their process and reasonable timelines for results. 

Ready? Let us help you implement a digital marketing strategy that leads to predictable sales.