They say it takes 10,000 hours or 6-10 years, depending on how often you do it, to truly become great at something.
Honestly, if you’re willing to put the time and effort into learning about marketing, you can probably get away with doing it yourself for a while. As a business owner, however, you’re busy with employees, inventory, customer service, sales, and the like. Do you really have time to study trends, conduct research, write blog articles and press releases, design flyers and email templates, and consistently engage customers in your marketing efforts as well? Next week we’ll suggest a few of our favorite tools to help you streamline the process….but sometimes it’s just easier, and worth it, to hire an experienced professional…or agency…to take care of the marketing details for you. Their specific set of skills will allow your organization to be more strategic in creating a consistent brand message, attracting and engaging customers, and overall, making more money – all while allowing you to focus on what’s really important, running your business.
If you know you need marketing help, but aren’t quite sure where to start, here are 3 areas we recommend outsourcing:
Marketing Planning, Strategy & Research – Developing an effective marketing strategy begins with the research. You need to determine what customers should be targeted, segmentations you should put them into and what type of marketing would be most effective in gaining their interest. Collecting accurate and useful information can be time consuming and properly analyzing it can be a challenge. Working with someone who is experienced in marketing similar products/services or industries can be beneficial in that they’ll be able to provide insight on what works best based on what they’ve actually seen be successful.
Developing Coordinated Marketing Campaigns – Let’s face it, being strategic in the planning and execution of marketing is essential for any business, no matter how large or how small. Sure posting a few haphazard Facebook messages here and there will get you a few likes, but effectively executing a strategy that incorporates all elements of your online and offline marketing is what will let customers know who you are, what you do and ultimately lead to more business. While many business owners try to take on this task themselves, allowing someone who has experience in developing coordinated marketing campaigns to support your marketing efforts is something you should strongly consider. Not only will it free up your time to focus on other important business needs, they will be able to effectively track your ROI and quickly advise on necessary changes to your strategy, based on your specific business needs.
Graphic Design and Branding – Whether your company is new and doesn’t yet have a brand identity, or you simply need a brand refresh, hiring outside support to help you meet your branding goals can be beneficial. Figuring out what you want your brand to look like is the easy part. Developing the necessary marketing tools, and skill set, to make those brand elements a reality is a bit more difficult. Consider hiring someone to help keep your brand identity and message consistent across your various marketing channels, including websites, flyers, business cards, social media, and advertisements.
Have you ever outsourced any business functions? We’d love to hear about it. Please share your experience and lessons learned in the comments below. Thinking about outsourcing? We’d love to hear from you too!