Let’s talk about letting go.
Almost every business has an operational task or two that baffle the in-house staff rather too often for comfort. They probably either haven’t realized yet how much it’s costing them, or they haven’t figured out how to tweak things to get the whole operation chugging along nicely. But most businesses are aware of outsourcing by now. They have looked into it, and they have been thinking about it—that is, if they haven’t found themselves a good company to outsource to yet.
Outsourcing involves letting go in an operationally healthy way. That’s outsourcing done right. It promises, and delivers, multilayered and multifaceted benefits.
Marketing in particular is quite a busy, oftentimes chaotic, aspect of any operation; and businesses may find it quite a daunting proposition for its often-beleaguered, team. For that matter, marketing is among the processes that are often outsourced by companies in today’s fastest-growing industries (e.g., renewable energy, cybersecurity, biotechnology). Elsewhere, popular names like Skype, Slack, and Whatsapp have had no problems working with outsourced developers; AT&T outsources back office jobs like billing and customer assistance; and giants like Google and Microsoft have been enjoying the benefits of outsourcing in many areas of their operations.
Letting a marketing company or team take over your marketing tasks and processes is more prudent than risky. Today’s marketing trends and the availability of marketing agencies point the way to outsourced marketing as an almost-inevitable option to streamline your business and maximize your growth opportunities.
But first, understand that you have quite a number of options in terms of how you want to work with a marketing agency. You can outsource your entire marketing or just aspects of it. You can outsource aspects of your marketing at different times. You just have to establish a highly functional system to ensure a productive collaboration, lest you end up with more headaches than you started with.
Now, assuming you’ve found the right business process outsourcing company for your marketing needs, here are the benefits you will be enjoying when you outsource:
1. Lower operational costs
When you outsource your marketing, you save your business a healthy sum of money that you can channel into growing your business rather than scrambling to keep it afloat. These are the costs you eliminate when you outsource your marketing activities:
Hiring and training expenses
The cost of hiring a new employee covers not just the money spent on salary, benefits, and taxes, but also the money lost during the period when the employee may still be undergoing training and therefore not yet fully productive, which won’t be until after as long as 8 weeks for clerical jobs, 20 weeks for professionals, and even longer for executives at 26-plus weeks.
Outsourcing gives you people who have already undergone the training and gained the experience, therefore eliminating the need for you to spend anywhere near the investment that is typical for an employee.
As far as taxes go, this Hundred5 article cites an example that shows how an employer actually has to spend more on each employee’s salary than the base figure they’re earning, without even factoring in such extras as gym memberships.
Compensation and benefits
Using 2018 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, covering average annual salary and average benefits costs for a marketing team adds up in a hurry. The total compensation for 7 positions is $891,610.54. That’s nothing to sneeze at, not even for an established business.
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) estimated the average total cost of health care for employees and dependents at $14,800 per employee for 2019.
Additional managers and HR personnel
Additional employees can signal a new team, an expanded department, or a new department, even—all translating into additional costs for hiring and training additional managers and HR personnel to cater to the needs of a growing workforce.
According to Gartner Inc., a firm spends an average of $700 per month per employee on IT, while employees spend 30 minutes per week on attempts to fix PC problems, theirs or their co-worker’s. And if your company is still relying heavily on password authentication, a single password reset request costs you $70 on average.
Purchase of additional office equipment and supplies
When you hire new employees, it usually means you’re adding rather than replacing, which translates into buying additional office equipment and supplies. The average amount spent monthly on office supplies for a business with up to 40 employees was $45 to $53 per employee about 6 years ago. With digital use, the figure has considerably gone down; and by 2018, some companies were spending $200 per employee on average annually, or $17 monthly. For a start-up company, any amount saved, from anywhere, adds to much-needed security.
Lease on a bigger space
A huge chunk of your budget for operating expenses goes to your office space rent. The amount you spend depends on the total area, location, and the type of the office you require. After that, special facilities are then factored into the computation.
Oftentimes, the additional cost of expanding your workforce can involve moving to a bigger office to accommodate new hires, and maybe even more after them as your business grows. If you outsource your marketing, you either stay put where you are, or you move to just a slightly bigger space and spend less than you might otherwise have to.
2. A team of specialists to get the job done, much faster
A marketing agency, a really good one, lives and breathes marketing—from strategies to the right font style for your brand. The role of marketing is vastly expanding, having absorbed some of the responsibilities that used to be specific to sales or production, even as new ones are defined in the fast lane of modern business. And there’s a good reason why you will be hard-pressed to find marketing professionals. LinkedIn’s 2018 Workforce Report indicates that the United States is short 230,000 people with marketing skills.
Specialization is key for marketing to successfully meet the demands of both businesses and consumers: businesses need to communicate their message clearly and powerfully to their target audience, and consumers need quality, mobilizing information, fast, to make decisions ranging from which restaurant to go to, to what new shampoo to try as alternative to their old brand.
Through your outsourced agency, you get access to different kinds of specialists whose roles are growing more and more vital in getting you recognized:
- Social media managers
- Vloggers and bloggers
- Chief listening officers
- Marketing technologists
- Paid media specialists
- Data scientists
- SEO specialists
- Content marketing specialists
- Copy and content writers
If your business actually needs the whole lot, the amount of money and time you will need to invest to get everyone in place and operational will potentially distract from other core functions your business needs to perform to serve your customers.
3. The flexibility of on-demand services
This is a very convenient feature of outsourced marketing. You are not actually required to engage the year-round services of your outsourced marketing agency. Depending on your requirements, you can have your agency do your marketing as your business needs arise. Or you can have them work on different aspects of your marketing as they are needed. For example, you can have them design posters, write special blog articles, and shoot short videos for the major holidays. If you choose to keep your marketing team, you may need your marketing agency to step in only during your business’s peak seasons to make sure your marketing campaigns are on time and at their most effective.
4. Focus and increased efficiency
With otherwise-expensive and skill-specific tasks outsourced to a team of specialists, you can now focus on what you really need to work on and what your business is actually equipped to handle. Focus equals increased efficiency. Focus allows everyone involved in the business to perform quality work and deliver on time. Quality invites recognition (and rewards). This is proper morale-boosting stuff.
Focus clarifies your goals and makes it so much easier to identify the steps and tools you need to achieve them. Focus gives you confidence to steer your business where it needs to go. Focus sharpens your competitive edge. And in the market today, you need to compete, or you cease to exist.
Focus triggers the domino effect of benefits.
5. Increased growth opportunities
An efficiently run business leaves room for itself and its people to grow. The absence of confusion and operational clutter translates into opportunities for learning, for expanding your knowledge. You will also likely have that bit of luxury to engage in creative pursuits to generate ideas for new things—new products, new services, or just new ways to do what you do better. All these are valuable for generating, and increasing, revenue.
If your organization is staffed by people who know your business inside out, you are able to adapt as your industry embraces changes coming thick and fast. That’s a great position to be in to start growing.
6. Improved perspective on your business
True, it’s your business, and you know it like the back of your hand (as you should); but no one is all-knowing. You can’t be too quick to discredit other people’s ideas and recommendations—especially not when they’re the experts. You may be the expert on your company’s services or products, but your marketing agency are the experts on how to get them recognized, and wanted, by your target audience. Their perspective was shaped by doing their job over and over for different types of clients, from having listened to people with their own different perspectives relating to their specific area of expertise. They know the value of consistency and flexibility, and what happens when you achieve just the right measures at just the right moments.
The longer you work with your marketing agency, and provided that you listen to what they have to say, the better equipped you yourself will be to deal with your own marketing activities. That makes you a better collaborator. And healthy collaborations are great springboards for some truly great innovations.
7. Shared risks
When you outsource certain activities of your business which you lack the proficiency to successfully perform, you lessen the risk of confusing your clients/users, introducing potentially disruptive errors to your overall operation, and, eventually, damaging your reputation.
With an outsourced marketing agency, you have a team of seasoned professionals who know the risks, both in general and specific to your business, and they are properly-equipped to address them. They should be able to give you sound advice on how to establish your brand and how to protect it.
Outsourcing allows you to be more proactive than reactive. It sharpens your focus on your goals, because you are no longer distracted by efficiency woes in certain departments that can slow down, or even derail, your entire operation. If you outsource your marketing, you free yourself from meeting the creative, technical, and tactical demands of creating your brand, establishing that brand, and maintaining its reputation—everything that spells the difference between success and “Start over, if you can.”
Outsourced marketing done the right way helps you narrow the distance between investment and return on investment, and for every business, ROI is essential.
So find the right agency for your business. Get in touch with Purple Cow Agency today, and let us know how we can maximize the benefits you want—even need.