You and your team have already gotten your feet wet with digital marketing — perhaps with a few display ads, a small PPC campaign, maybe a boosted post here and there. You’ve probably waded in just far enough to see the possibilities — and to discover just how quickly the waters grow murky and deep.
You need help.
But is it time to build up your in-house digital marketing team? Or does it make more sense to seek out a qualified digital marketing agency?
Here’s a quick test to determine which is best for you. If you answer “Yes!” to any of the following questions, it’s probably time to consider a digital marketing agency:
- Are your digital marketing initiatives important enough to demand someone’s undivided attention—but not yet big enough to justify growing your team?
- Is your current team overextended?
- Do you need to protect your digital marketing initiatives from competing internal interests?
- Are you at a crossroads?
You Need a Dedicated Marketing Team—but Can’t Justify the Cost
Although this is most often the deciding factor for smaller businesses, it can strike an organization of any size: You may discover that you need the specialized skills of a digital marketing professional, but don’t need those skills on a daily basis. A freelancer or digital marketing agency can fill that gap.
Alternately—and sometimes trickier to recognize—is the situation where you can make good and consistent use of an in-house digital marketer, but your plans demand a range of mission-critical technical skills (like SEO, search engine advertising, and web analytics) that very rarely come in a single “jack-of-all-trades” marketing freelancer or employee. In this case, hiring a digital marketing firm will bring you all of the skills you need, but only in the amounts and at the times you need them.
Your Marketing Team is Already Overextended
This is often the case in larger organizations, where there may already be a sturdy marketing team, but they are constantly “running to stand still” with existing initiatives. On top of that, unless they have a background in digital marketing, it’s unlikely the skills they have will help them really harness the power that comes from a well coordinated online marketing campaign. Frankly, it’s very easy to miss important details—or fail to fully appreciate the disproportionate impact of seemingly minor decision. This can make or break your digital marketing campaign—and waste a lot of money getting zero results.
Additionally, internal teams already carry many in-office and face-to-face responsibilities. Subsequently, in spite of their best intentions, staying on top of tracking and reporting on digital marketing campaign performance often slips. As a result, they might not even be able to see that money is being wasted without results.
Contrast that to what you get with a digital marketing agency. Here at Climb, many of our clients spend upwards of five figures per month on ad spend alone. When someone is putting that much trust in you, as an agency, you make sure you’re ready and able to point to the numbers on the spreadsheet and show that what you’re doing is worthwhile.
You Need to Protect Your Digital Marketing Initiative
Any organization is defined by competing interests—and every workplace occasionally gets caught up in confusing the urgent and the important (which, as Ike pointed out, are very rarely one and the same). Digital marketing is a vital source of new business—that fresh air that fills the bellows and feeds the fires at the heart of your company.
But it can also be intangible—ads, posts and content you may never see firsthand “in the wild”, as your message and brand make their way across the Internet. As such, it’s easy to let the digital marketing (or even worse, the analytics and reporting) slide onto the back burner—especially as your inbox fills up, the phone rings, and a cranky client is waiting in the lobby.
By hiring a digital marketing agency, you don’t just take that entire task off everyone’s plate—you place this important element of your business behind a firewall that keeps it safe from the hundreds of “urgent” tasks that pop up in any business on any given day.
You Are at a Crossroads
Your company is at a crossroads—an expansion, a pivot, moving from the plateau you’re standing on to the next big climb—and you need an outside perspective.
Certainly, every company understands their visible competitors and clientele—the folks they talk to on the phone, the companies they see at trade shows. But many are surprised to discover that there is a whole constellation of “online-only” competitors—companies that compete with you quietly, gobbling up as much online attention as they can. And, correspondingly, you’re likely unaware of your “invisible” potential clients, those who are looking for answers and solutions, but haven’t yet engaged with anyone in your industry.
A digital marketing agency doesn’t just bring you the benefit of a measured, objective perspective. They also draw on a deep understanding of the online landscape in which you need to thrive. How hard is it to amplify your message there? How many other voices are competing for the ears you need to reach?
It’s entirely possible that the crossroads that you’re at is this very question — Is it time for us to hire a digital marketing agency? You’re always welcome to request a free consultation to talk through your situation. Or you can use our self-assessment tool for an objective view on how an agency like Climb Marketing could augment your current digital marketing efforts.