Is it time to bring your marketing efforts in-house? It seems as though marketing is less of a business function and more of a universal constant at this stage, like the speed of light in a vacuum or the Sunday night blues.
Despite being a vital piece of the business-building jigsaw puzzle, many C-suites struggle to build effective marketing functions. From designers and content writers to social media managers, and, if you’re feeling unusual, identity architects, there are many specialists to consider in the marketing space.
Herein lies the big barrier: who do you bring in-house? And why should you consider building an in-house marketing function at all, especially if outsourcing has worked for so long? Here’s why.
Living the Brand
An in-house marketing team will have an understanding of your company’s essence at the molecular level. Articulating the true nature of your brand's message is tough (it’s a reason why outsourced solutions are so expensive). In theory, nobody is better placed to do it than those who live and breathe that message every day.
Agile business. It’s the basis for a solid strategy, a response to tempestuous market change, and a buzz term that will not go away. Compared to their outsourced counterparts, in-house marketing teams have the benefit of speedier decision-making, and they’ve got access to the wider company too, enabling them to fix problems without having to strain over a remote back-and-forth with an agency.
A Budget’s Delight
Going in-house can enhance the reach of your budget, allowing you to take control of your resources. You’ll have all the accountability in the world once you go in-house, something you’ll lose through outsourcing. This means you’ll have ownership over any spend and trade, and you’ll also have a specialised employee on your squad that can take on a range of different responsibilities and projects over time.
Transparency has been a concern in outsourcing for a while – the Association of National Advertisers estimates that 70% of the $200 billion poured into programmatic advertising spend doesn’t reach the consumer. When you bring your function in-house, you’ll know exactly where your budget is going. You’ll also have full access to the data, granting you deeper insight into the effectiveness of your function’s various outputs.
Learning and Development
Once you’ve got the right people on board, it’s time to invest in them! By hiring a permanent employee, you’ve got a real chance to develop their skillsets and take their capabilities, and therefore your business potential, to the next stage. L&D plays a crucial role in growing and scaling a business. Plus, it tends to lead to greater retention rates, a necessity amid today’s talent shortage conundrum.
What Kind of Marketeer Should You Hire?
It depends. Every business is unique, be it the space it’s operating in, the product or service it’s selling, the locale, the culture, or even the décor. It makes knowing who to hire at the right time tricky. This is technically an argument to outsource, but anyhow, it’s worth thinking about what you need from your marketing function. Why not ask yourself:
· What are my targets as a business? How much do you want to grow your social media following? Do you want to increase lead generation? Perhaps you’re looking for a way to reposition or rebrand your company.
· What kind of specialist skillset do I need to reach my targets? Do you need a designer to beautify your brand? If you’re hoping to level up your brand’s messaging and release high-quality insights, a content writer is a must. If you need to start from scratch, a content marketing exec is a good first step.
· What Type of Marketing campaign do I want to embark on? You’ll need to think about where your marketing campaign is going, where you want to go, and what kind of platforms you’re leveraging. Your ideal candidate will likely have industry experience with the platforms and people you’re trying to target.
Businesses will typically utilise a combination of both in-house and outsourced marketing solutions. Even a full-service in-house team can struggle in areas they haven’t set foot in before – it doesn’t mean they aren’t great, but it does mean you might be better off filling in the gaps by outsourcing to experienced agencies on certain projects.
When to Outsource
The outsourcing vs in-house debate is probably best framed as being contextual. The right answer depends on the needs of your business, and if that means outsourcing to deliver a campaign, then so be it. Going in-house has all the benefits an employee can bring, and all the drawbacks too, it’s a case of the right place/right time.
If you need any support with building out your marketing function, the Trust in SODA squad is here to help. We take a community-led, people-focused approach to staffing, and we can help you find the talent you’re looking for. If you have any questions about our methodology, our global talent network, or our previous work, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today.