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by John Bonini John Bonini on April 25, 2013

Strategic Campaign Planning: Should You Hire a Marketing Agency?

April 25, 2013

Inbound Campaign Planning: Should You Hire a Marketing Agency?Before launching any form of a campaign, you need to extensively plan out the details.  There are so many aspects to consider that you cannot simply assign a few major tasks to different people and run with it.  Well you could, but the odds are that you will not see a positive ROI.


Rather than risking it, do your homework and map out your strategy.  Not sure where to start?  Perhaps seeking the professional assistance of a marketing agency would be beneficial to your business.  There are a number of things to consider when choosing how to tackle the planning portion of your campaign, so let's weigh the options.


Strategic Planning: Do it Myself…or Hire a Marketing Agency?


Planning your campaign and identifying the framework for implementing the most powerful inbound marketing strategy is critical in experiencing accelerated results and achieving your goals.


Simply put, you can’t just start writing blog articles, creating premium content, or posting to social media and expect any kind of return without a plan. The power of inbound marketing lies in its ability to generate the right kind of traffic and leads for your company in order to shorten your sales process.


This requires a clear, concise blueprint in order to meet your KPI’s and achieve your business goals.


This includes:



  • Analysis of your current marketing and brand

  • Definition of your business goals

  • Turning your business goals into marketing goals

  • Performing a thorough competitive analysis

  • Defining value proposition

  • Developing your quality lead identification statement

  • Creating detailed buyer personas

  • Performing an initial keyword analysis

  • Definition of key performance indicators (KPIs)

  • Developing a 12-month strategy

  • Implementing marketing automation software

  • Optimizing your website and setting up your campaign

  • Connecting your marketing and CRM

  • Creating content that attracts your target audience

  • Implementing and optimizing your lead generation strategy

  • Managing your leads and your sales and marketing funnel

  • Understanding your results

  • Improving your results over time and achieving your goals


In-House


Successfully implementing the type of planning and development required to execute a powerful inbound marketing campaign will really test your resources. You’ll need the staff in place to not only carry out the necessary tasks, but also manage the entire campaign and ensure it’s meeting your defined KPIs and on track to deliver a positive ROI.


It’s impossible for a CEO to find the time to be able to do all of this and still have the time to operate a successful business day-to-day. Therefore you’ll need to find high-level talent in the form of a marketing director with extensive experience in executing full-service marketing campaigns.


No recent college graduates here.


Depending on how aggressive your marketing goals are, you’ll need a bonafide marketing superstar with extensive knowledge of the inbound marketing process that can facilitate the entire campaign…and this won’t be easy to find.


Because inbound marketing is still so new, the agencies are really the ones who are well ahead of the curve in setting the industry standard for best practices and results.


There’s no room for error here, so it’s critical that the right person is hired to be at the helm.


This will be a challenge, as unlike agencies, employee resumes don’t come with case studies, so there’s limited resources available to ascertain whether or not a certain candidate can handle the considerable responsibility for achieving your business goals and experiencing an ROI from inbound marketing.


Agency


The value an inbound marketing agency provides is that they already have extensive experience in the development of full-service campaigns for other clients, therefore they know what works.


As a result, they already have the entire strategic planning and campaign development process fully detailed and ready to implement on day one.


The right agency will even work in the development of your inbound marketing GamePlan immediately after signing an agreement. Due to the experience an agency has in working with similar companies, this will allow them to expedite the strategic planning process and get to the execution quicker.


All of this is completed prior to the launch of your campaign, ensuring that all marketing initiatives are focused on achieving your unique business goals and also targeting your ideal prospects.


This has an immeasurable impact on your campaign, as you’ll get much more from your marketing budget, and also shorten your sales process due to an influx of more qualified prospects. This is only possible with a clear, detailed, and powerful plan for executing your campaign.


Research is key here, as any inbound marketing agency worth its weight will have case studies in order to prove their value. Therefore it’s actually much easier to find a reputable agency than it is a bonafide marketing superstar to hire in-house to oversee your marketing efforts.


Still not sure if you should hire an agency or not?


For more answers on whether you should keep your inbound marketing campaign in house or hire an agency, check out our newest Ebook.  You'll find all of the answers that you're looking for!

John Bonini

John Bonini

John is the Marketing Director at IMPACT, responsible for the overall marketing and branding strategy. He also writes for the HubSpot Blog, Social Media Examiner, and Convince & Convert among others. He enjoys playing guitar, high-fives, and anything with marinara sauce.

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