When You Should Hire a Marketing Agency (As a Small Business)
In a recent blog post we discussed signs you shouldn't be working with a marketing agency. So, it only makes sense that we follow it up with a post on when you should hire one! This post is for small businesses, but agencies can make a lot of sense for much bigger companies and corporations as well. (Stay tuned for that blog post coming up!).
You're Ready to Invest Some Time and Budget to Your Marketing
The biggest sign that an agency is a good choice for you is if you're ready to try something new, you've got a bit of budget, and you've got some clear goals for your company that marketing can support.
This seems obvious, but as business owners we understand that sometimes you feel you should do simply because competitors or advisors are telling you to. If this is the case then ask for a consultation and decide if it's something you're comfortable with.
The worst case scenario is committing to something with an agency that makes you feel stuck, stressed, and stretched.
However, knowing exactly what you want from an agency isn't required, which brings us to our next point.
You're Not Sure Where to Begin
Surprisingly, this is a good sign! If Marketing isn't your area of expertise (and sometimes even if it is) it's hard to know what the low hanging fruit is and where the best investment is. The reason it's so confusing is that it's different for everyone!
Working with an agency means you'll get expert advice on where to start, what makes sense to you, and how to build and grow.
You're Not Prepared for Accelerated Growth
This one is tricky and very common. Many small businesses start with a marketing coordinator, maybe a manager and a few other specialized roles. What happens if you're hit with a big order, expanded distribution, or explosive growth? Is your team prepared to expand quickly? Does each member of your team know what they would do if their team doubled tomorrow?
Marketing agencies, like ours, can create tools, systems, and collateral to support this growth so that employees can be on-boarded quickly without any disruption in branding or communication.
You Want to Build a Bank of Branded Materials
Working with an agency, even for a short time, can support marketing efforts for much longer than the partnership by creating content, images, and collateral that will continue to support marketing and company goals.
Marketing agencies can create or curate photos, videos, web/newsletter content, paid media content, paid online campaigns, social video content and much more. If you're on a tight budget you can plan on leveraging this for much further in the future.
It's Time for Expert Advice
Often times small businesses don 't have the budget for an entire marketing department, nevermind experienced experts. It can be a good idea for you and your marketing team to have experts in a variety of areas to offer insights, test some new concepts, optimize your channels, and update your brand.
Agencies can be very beneficial in that you can work with experienced photographers, graphic designers, communication experts, and campaign managers with one agreement instead of searching these people out and hiring them independently.
For the Connections
Not to brag here, but we've spent a decade building contacts, relationships, and partnerships. It's a time-consuming process that has all sorts of rewards, but if you're building your own business then there's no time to keep track of the hottest bloggers, social apps or communication trends.
Even if you know exactly how to build your brand it's unlikely that you have that sort of network at your disposal or the time to coordinate these events or partnerships.
When You or Your Team Needs Support or Guidance
The biggest reason small businesses work with agencies is to take some of the marketing efforts off their plates so they can be more effective at their jobs and remain competitive. Because agencies are such specialists, your team gain insights into the most efficient processes, execution tactics, and knowledge from experience.
Our clients have worked with us with short term contracts to up the standards of their own marketing efforts and we've also had long-term clients that need support for company growth. If you're thinking about the benefits of an agency the best thing you can do is sit down for a consultation!