Let’s suppose that your company is a small business in need of marketing expertise. You realize you don’t have the time or expertise to do all of your digital marketing. You wonder if you need an individual freelancer or a digital marketing company. It can be confusing knowing to whom you should outsource in this situation; a freelancer or a marketing company. Well, there are pros and cons of outsourcing. Let’s talk about some differences between the two options.
Pros and Cons of Outsourcing
It could be helpful to start figuring out which choice is right for you by doing a simple exercise commonly referred to as the Benjamin Franklin Close. This famous man used his wits and figured out a simple yet effective way to make good decisions.
In the Ben Franklin Close, which is often used to close a sale (or make a decision) you simply take out a piece of paper and draw a line down the middle to make two columns. At the top of the paper, write out the situation clearly about which you currently feel undecided.
For our example, you will need two pieces of paper. At the top of one paper you would write, “hire an individual marketing freelancer.” At the top of the second paper, you would write,“hire a digital marketing company.”
Then, at the top of the first column on each paper, write the word “benefits.” At the top of the second column, write the word “negatives.” Then, start writing all the benefits of hiring an individual marketing freelancer and the negatives on the same page. Do the same exercise on the other page about the digital marketing company. What is in your mind will suddenly start to become apparent to you for each choice. In this exercise, you are making your customized list of pros and cons of outsourcing for your marketing needs.
General Pros and Cons of Outsourcing
What type of small business owner are you? Are you a scattered creative unable to focus easily? Are you more interested in developing a relationship with people yet unable to plan or organize well? Are you a perfectionist? Are you a quick thinker? If so, understand that your natural abilities are actually hardwired into your brain from birth. They offer advantages and disadvantages to you. Finding out what those are and using them productively can help you make the best decisions for the marketing help you need.
For example, being a quick thinker is a great quality in a business owner. However, not everyone can think at Mach One speeds.
If you expect everyone to have your rapid problem-solving gift, your expectations may be unrealistic for a lot of the rest of the world. In this case, hiring an individual freelancer with this same type of ability might be good for you. However, it might be good for you to keep in mind during your interview process to ask how quickly this person can problem-solve.
If you are a quick thinker, you might also be a “bottom-liner” as well. You want just the facts and people who get right to the point. If this sounds like you, keep your preferences in mind as you look for someone who can be your clone. However, use the “f” word (flexibility) when choosing any individual marketing freelancer. If nobody “gels” with you, the problem might be YOU. That’s where being flexible can help you best as you accept that no clones of you do exist. Better to change your expectations to something that gets you conversions (leads or sales) as you desire but with more flexibility.
Another consideration is your knowledge of marketing. If you have no idea about all the processes involved in individual marketing tasks, simply because you WANT something done fast may not get you the speed you want.
Remember, the unexpected will ALWAYS be an unpredictable factor when engaged in marketing. After all, marketing is highly experimental. It REQUIRES a lot of testing to see what your market likes.
For example, in online ads, your marketing experts are NOT mind readers. They CAN’T exactly know what’s in the mind of your target market. Due to the thousands of variables, testing of ads MUST be done to see which ones seem most appealing to your market audience.
But wait! There’s more! When interviewing a digital marketing company, not everyone on the team will have your gift of rapid problem solving and productivity mastery. The unexpected and unpredictable again WILL happen. Count on it! So, when interviewing the person in charge of the meeting and asking about the team members in a digital marketing company, it is once again good to use the “f” word in your meet.
When it comes to hiring anyone for marketing remember, you are hiring somebody who is experienced in marketing. It is a skill that either you CAN’T do or don’t want to do because it exhausts you when you try to do it. Your experiences with marketing show you that you needed to hire those who CAN do marketing. You can almost always be sure they will be mentally and physically unable to go as fast as you imagine the marketing can be done. Efforts of even the TOP marketing experts will always be affected by the unexpected. So, keep all this in mind.
Understanding that “stuff happens” when it comes to doing marketing or ANY business task is inherently unpredictable. This fact, then, requires you to adapt to being reasonable with others who are doing all the experimenting with your target market audience.
Our main point is that it’s important to use outsourcing in the way that best works for your business. At a minimum, what works best is for you to be positive without incessantly micromanaging people.
Marketers you hire have processes and are learning which ones work in the most appealing way for YOUR uniquetarget market. Be kind to them. Show them appreciation and patience. After all, it benefits YOU to work WITH these pioneers for your business success. They are all part of a reason why your business will provide sales conversions if you all work together.
Other things to consider…
For some business owners, it’s best to hire individual freelancers. You will individually manage those freelancers. Of course, being a projectmanager for your marketing takes you away from running your business. But sometimes this is necessary, especially when your funds are low.
For other business owners, it’s best to hire a digital marketing company and let them do the project management and hiring/managing people. Micromanagers should NOT go to a digital marketing company. It often is too many people for a micro-managing perfectionist to handle.
If your company has a large enough marketing budget, you are better off hiring a digital marketing company. This team of experts already has the training, the experience and the innate gift to market. In the long run, it will be a better return on your investment to just let the experts do what they naturally do well.
Simply put, outsourcing is the movement of part of your workload to someone else. Work you outsource to someone else already trained and with the skill to do it well can be what helps you sleep well at night.