Why CEOs Should Partner With Digital Marketing Agencies VS. In-House

Martin Andrews
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Diving head first into a digital marketing strategy isn’t easy. Before the action plan can even roll into production, a number of working parts must already be set firmly in place. All of this will partially rely on your marketing budget, growth goals, investment in technology, and how finance, marketing and sales will all align to achieve common goals.

Whether you are a new brand or an established organization, the question of outsourcing your marketing operations or using an in-house team is critical to achieving your growth goals. As CEO one of your many responsibilities is to define your goals and objectives, then determine if they can best be met internally or through partnering with a growth-driven digital marketing agency that already has the technology pieces and advanced teams in place.

Is funding the recruitment, development, and training of an in-house team a better investment than creating a lasting partnership with an agency that can align with your company’s culture and branded voice? This article is intended to help CEOs, CFOs, CMOs and executive leadership teams gain deeper insight into the benefits of partnering with a digital marketing agency.

Finally, as a Google and HubSpot partner growth marketing agency, we certainly come across as having an inherent bias when writing an article like this one. But we are not a fit for every business that seeks our services. We often turn away brands because the fit simply isn’t there to benefit both sides. So even if you don’t partner with us, we highly recommend finding an agency best suited to fulfill your needs.

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Digital Marketing Agencies can Improve Goal Setting

Internal marketing teams are given a set of goals and are asked to execute a number of strategies to achieve them. And most digital marketing agencies work in the same manner; they are given a target with a number of defined objectives, and are asked to overcome them.

But what if your digital marketing agency also assessed your goals and helped define which are short-term and long-term, how reasonable they are, and adjust the goal based on proven data in a measurable manner than garners profitability?  Top growth marketing agencies do just that. Before a marketing strategy is even pieced together, the best growth-driven marketing agencies assess their client’s goals, re-define them, and engineer an ideal strategy that would otherwise be non existent. No internal team you hire will have the skills or knowledge to even entertain this concept. By investing in an established growth marketing agency, you place your organization in the best possible position to achieve the right goals.

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Marketing Agencies are More Cost Effective

Partnering with a digital marketing agency is, by far, more cost effective. This can easily be measured through assessing:

  • Recruitment and hiring expenses
  • Employee salaries
  • Training and development
  • Benefits
  • Low retention rates
  • Investing in technology

Most experienced growth marketing agencies offering SEO, inbound, paid media and a number of other strategies range anywhere from $3000 to $6000 in monthly investment. Now let’s break down each of the above points in light of the average cost of working with an agency.

Because retention rates are low for internal marketing positions, recruitment and HR is an ongoing expense. A 2018 Quora survey revealed that more than 76 percent of marketers hired to fill roles for internal organizations to catapult their career into agency work. An additional 62 percent said they continuously search for positions that offer better pay and benefits. Of 500 mid-size businesses surveyed, the average retention period for a mid-level internal marketer was 14 months, and for management 16 months.

When partnering with an agency, you will have a dedicated team dialed in to your growth goals without interruption. With that comes tools and strategies that generate leads and drive sales  unlikely to derive from internal teams due to a lack of agency experience.

Employee salaries for internal marketing teams are significant. If you opt to build an internal team, expect to pay the following salaries if you want to stay competitive and attract the best people:

  • Director of Operations – $95,000 to $175,060 / year
  • Digital Marketing Strategist – $75,000 to $120,00 / year
  • Social Media Manager – $50,000 to $92,700 / year
  • Marketing Technology Manager – $72,500 to $110,516 / year
  • Entry-Level Content Writer – $30,000 to $70,000 / year
  • Creative & Development Marketing Manager – $30,000 – $65,500 / year
  • Marketing Account Managers – $42,000 to 86,040 / year

You can expect to spend anywhere from $394,500 to $720,210 per year on an internal marketing team with additional training, recruitment, and other associated costs. Or you can go the agency route and invest between $36,000 and $72,000 with dialed-in experts without additional costs or headaches.

Internal marketing teams also need access to robust tools and marketing technology. In 2018 business with internal marketing teams spent between 5K (low-end) to 100K (high-end) with an average spend of 15-20K for any respectful mid-size company. Based on your need and goals, marketing technology stacks are imperative for generating and measuring the effectiveness of a marketing strategy. In looking at the expenses, in-house marketing can easily incur ten times the cost for technology offered by an agency. In terms of ROI, the advantages and value of partnering with an agency is undeniable.

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Start a Conversation with a Growth Marketing Agency

Based on your company’s needs, resources and abilities, partnering with a marketing agency may likely be the best investment you can make in your organization’s growth. In addition, if your company is growing, partnering with the right digital marketing agency can offer strategic and fiscal advantages that are unparalleled to internal resources.

As a CEO, your next move is to start a conversation with a few agencies; get a feel for the different perspective they offer, how they align with your brand, and the proposed blueprint to achieving your growth goals.

Download our FREE Guide on the WEBITMD Growth Marketing Stack

To really get a good insight into how agencies help businesses of all sizes hit their goals, we invite you to download our Growth Marketing Guide where you will learn how the best agencies customize technology and strategies to help companies hit their high-revenue targets.
Download The WEBITMD Growth Stack.

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