As digital marketing tools become more powerful and effective, companies of all sizes are feeling the pressure to incorporate them into their overall marketing strategies. Agencies and consultants allow you to outsource your brand marketing completely, freeing you up to focus directly on your business’s daily operations. At first this seems like an excellent idea, especially if your in-house team isn’t full of digital marketing experts. Before you commit to outsourcing your marketing to an external agency, however, consider there are some tasks your internal team may be uniquely qualified to do well. Here are some items to consider:

Current Marketing Strategy

Where are you currently in your digital marketing strategy? Is your website well-developed and producing quality leads with best SEO best practices in place? Do you have a strong voice and brand presence? Do you know who your ideal customers are and how to connect with this specific audience? Does your message stand out among your competitors? Do you have paid media campaigns set up? Do you have a social media strategy and are potential customers interacting with your brand on these various channels?

All of these items are a lot to consider, but your answers to these questions could very well define the next steps you need to take toward greater success. If you don’t know the answer to the questions above or need help on many of them, you may want to look at a digital marketing agency to help you through your marketing challenges.

Social Media Community Management

Given the importance of real time responses to social media comments, and the impact of even small errors on brand credibility, it often makes sense to keep your daily social media community management in-house where information can flow most quickly, and decisions can be made easier. While an external vendor is an excellent resource for designing your social media presence, you want hands-on control of activity on your page or feed.

Conversion of Leads to Sales

Your marketing agency will design and implement a polished, comprehensive digital strategy for your company, and is likely to generate a significant lead generation increase. That’s what you pay them for.  When leads escalate to the point of pursuing sales, however, you want to take those relationships in-house, where your sales force can manage the closing of the opportunity and your team can address follow-up questions. Because your brand rests on the quality of its services, you want to make sure that it’s your hand-picked team that delivers the service at the point of sale and beyond.

Marketing Strategy Revisions

A critical part of digital marketing is the gathering and reporting of traffic data from your efforts.  Your digital marketing agency has the tools and the expertise to generate and interpret these reports for you, and to make recommendations on how to improve performance. It’s tempting to put the entire project into their hands, but be aware of the impact this choice may have on your brand. Before authorizing your digital agency to make strategic changes to your marketing plan, make sure you understand the details of how your plan has been performing to date, and the full range of consequences that may accompany any changes

Choosing a digital marketing agency to help you light a fire under your marketing results is a decision that should not be taken lightly. When interviewing a digital agency to outsource your needs, ask yourself, “How will this company help my business grow,” and “How will this agency take my marketing objectives and turn them into results and ROI?” Look for an agency that understands your business, your marketing objectives, and is willing to put in the work to help you achieve your goals.

As the marketing landscape continues to evolve, there will be increasing opportunities to outsource this element of your organization’s strategy and workload. By approaching these items mindfully, you’ll be able to make wise decisions about how best to protect your brand’s integrity while making the most of all available resources. If you would like more help deciding what areas of digital marketing you should keep in-house or outsource to an agency, please contact me!