For many, getting your product or service in front of people is half the battle when growing your own business. A lot of small business owners know they need marketing, but don’t have the time to manage their marketing efforts while operating their business. Perhaps this is a crossroads you’ve found yourself standing before in the past, or this might be a current crossroads. As you can probably imagine, there are several solutions to this dilemma.
You could hire an intern, hire a freelancer, hire an in-house marketing manager, or outsource your marketing to a marketing agency. There is no “right” answer. It’s different for each business and situation. Let’s look at when it might be time to look into each of these solutions.
Is it time to hire an intern?
Hiring an intern can be an excellent resource. Not only are they inexpensive (or even free), they’re also looking for the opportunity to implement the knowledge they’ve acquired in school into real-world scenarios. They want to prove to you that they are assets to the company, and that they should be hired later on.
The glaring caveat of hiring an intern is that they require guidance. You need to be able to take them under your wing and give them the attention and education that they signed up for. So if you are too busy to mentor an intern, or lack the knowledge to guide them, this may not be the best option for your company right now.
It’s also important to note that an intern likely doesn’t have much real-world marketing experience so expecting magic from them is likely going to result in disappointment.
Is it time to hire a freelancer?
Hiring a freelance marketer is a great option for small companies whose staff may lack marketing expertise, or for companies whose staff already has a full workload and don’t want to overwork their employees. Freelancers are typically project based, which is why they excel at being able to step in and fill a specific order. They can save you a lot of money if you compare their cost to the cost of hiring a marketing manager or an agency since you’re likely hiring them for specific projects, not a retainer or salary.
Finding a freelance marketer is quick and easy with sites like Fiverr and UpWork, but it’s important to thoroughly vet your freelancers. Fiverr, like many freelancing sites, does not really have any ability standards meaning that anyone could say they’re an expert in anything. UpWork does have a focus on testing and ensuring that freelancers are at least proficient in the services they’re selling, but it’s definitely not fool-proof.
One the biggest drawback to hiring a freelancer is they are more of a temporary band-aid, rather than a long-term solution. The lack of overarching strategy that comes with hiring freelancers may end up costing you more in the long run if you’re constantly having to update the look and feel of a campaign for consistency. Even if you hire the same freelancer for the entire campaign, you might miss out on the cohesion of the follow up campaigns.
Is it time to hire an in-house Marketing Manager?
An in-house Marketing Manager is another highly valuable resource. Hiring a Marketing Manager allows you to focus on running other aspects of your business because you have a full-time employee dedicated to planning, executing, and monitoring marketing initiatives. You also gain the advantage of having more control over the marketing campaigns that are being created because you can quickly and easily get your Marketing Manager to make any adjustments that you see fit. It also provides your business the opportunity to scale, because if your Marketing Manager does their job well that brings in more revenue for the company, and you can reinvest the profits into more personnel.
One of the hardest parts of hiring a single person to handle all your marketing, like you’d likely request of a Marketing Manager, is that they’re required to wear all marketing hats. They’ll likely be your designer, copywriter, developer, advertiser, social media marketer, email marketer, and analytics manager. That’s a lot for one person to do and – as we all know – if you’re spread that thin, it’s hard to be great in every aspect.
Ideally, a Marketing Manager should be well versed in the technical complexities of contact tracking, on-page and off-page SEO tactics, understanding data analytics, as well as being a good writer, designer, and developer. Really, you’re looking for a marketing unicorn.
Even if you find the perfect candidate, they won’t be cheap, and they’ll probably need staff, additional vendors, or freelancers to help them execute on marketing initiatives (depending on the size of the company). And remember, full-time employees expect a benefits package in addition to their salary.
Is it time to hire a marketing agency?
There are many advantages to outsourcing your marketing to a marketing agency. It allows you to focus your time on day-to-day operations, streamline your marketing expenses, and you get a level of quality, service, and expertise that interns, freelancers, and one man (or woman) marketing teams just can’t provide.
Nonetheless, you may want to abstain from hiring a marketing agency if you have little to no budget, you want complete control of the marketing process, or you have an unclear vision for where your company is headed. For a more in-depth look at why you may or may not want to hire a marketing agency, read Should I Hire A Marketing Agency?
Maybe you’d love to hire a marketing agency, but you don’t have the budget. There are multiple ways you could market your business for free (or inexpensively), but again that costs time and requires some know how. Do it yourself or break the bank on an agency, it’s an unfortunate dichotomy that many business owners are forced into.
The Other Business Marketing Option
Now there’s finally another option, marketing agency expertise at your fingertips without the long-term contracts or the marketing agency pricing – BUZZ On Demand Marketing. With BUZZ you can get all of your marketing à la carte. That means you can pick and choose what marketing services you need when you need them, and you won’t be locked into a long-term contract or retainer. You get agency quality services at a fraction of the cost; from content and copywriting to social media and even website design and SEO.
Hopefully, this article has given you more to consider when deciding on what marketing solution fits your business best, no matter where your company is financially.