You've been throwing around the idea of starting an inbound marketing campaign, but now "DO I HAVE THE TIME?!" is echoing through your mind. Stop worrying, take a breath, and read.
Below we have outlined the time commitment differences between doing in-house marketing and hiring an agency. Read through and see which scenario seems like it works best for your company and its needs.
Do You Have the Time Needed for Inbound Marketing?
A successful 12-month strategy requires planning and consistency. Setting time aside to complete the tasks necessary to execute a powerful inbound marketing campaign can be a challenge if you’re also trying to balance the day-to-day operations of running your business.
How much time is needed? Well, that all depends on your business goals.
For companies with more aggressive business goals, much more time and resources will need to be allocated toward your campaign efforts in order to successfully achieve your goals and produce the ROI your company needs.
How aggressive are your business goals?
Moderate – Companies who have a 12-month revenue growth goal of 10-15%. They may have a limited marketing budget, but they know the importance of inbound marketing and the need to keep their sales team fed with quality leads. Typically for companies looking to make the shift to inbound marketing for the first time.
High – Companies who have a 12-month revenue growth goal of 15-25%. Typically for companies that require more advanced services, as they’ve tried inbound marketing but need a boost in order to achieve their business goals.
Full – Companies eyeing an aggressive shift in revenue growth (over 25%.)Typically for companies who may already be implementing inbound marketing, but need an agency to accelerate their results and provide the shot in the arm needed in order to achieve aggressive revenue growth.
So what does this all mean?
Well…depending on how aggressive your business goals are will determine the kind of commitment required to achieve them. In other words, the amount of time and resources needed to execute your campaign will fluctuate depending on what exactly you’re trying to accomplish.
So set clear and measurable business goals and ask yourself, “Do I currently have the time and resources available to achieve them?”
Successfully implementing an inbound marketing campaign means already having a trained and knowledgeable staff experienced in executing and managing a full-service campaign.
Not to mention, it also means that upper management (and even the CEO) are well-versed in inbound marketing best practices and know full well what it will take to achieve the company’s business goals.
Not only is this overly optimistic, but it’s also a lot to expect from an in-house marketing team that’s already overworked, and even more to expect from C-Level executives who simply don’t have the time to worry about it.
Aside from the entire planning and development stages of launching your campaign, an inbound marketing campaign typically performs the following tasks on a daily basis:
Monitor Dashboards – Log in to HubSpot (or Google analytics) and measure your traffic and lead numbers against your monthly goals. This helps you to stay on course and address problems quickly.
Marketing Team Meeting – Quickly review short-term goals and get a status report.
Blogging – Refers to publishing content on a daily basis, as well as developing topics to assign to the marketing team in order to fill the editorial calendar. The more consistent your content, the more visitors and leads you’ll generate.
Social Monitoring – Using tools like HubSpot, Google Alerts, or HootSuite to scan social media for brand mentions.
Social Engagement –Engage your social media followings with retweets, replies, and leave comments on other industry blogs. Respond to all brand mentions and be sure to answer all questions.
Share New Content – Via social media, and be sure to establish mutual relationships with everyone who shares your content.
Moving Projects Forward – Whether it’s continuing work on a draft for an upcoming ebook, scheduling an email to promote a new service offering, or redesigning your pricing page, plan and execute the next steps.
Determine whether you have the staff in place to perform these tasks on a daily basis. If this task list sounds overly ambitious, then it may be time to either revaluate your business goals, or instead, the manner in which you plan to execute the campaign.
If you have aggressive business goals, yet don’t currently possess the time or resources to perform a daily task list like the one above, you’re a prime candidate to consider hiring an inbound marketing agency.
Hiring an inbound marketing agency allows businesses to reallocate their time and resources to focus more on the day-to-day operations of running their business.
When considering hiring an agency, it’s important to evaluate the potential return on investment from doing so compared to going it alone.
Based on your business goals, how quickly – with the time and resources you currently have available – will you see a return on investment?
Due to most companies' marketing budgets, most in-house marketing staffs are limited in their skills and expertise; therefore it can actually take longer to experience an ROI.
An inbound marketing agency contains experts in the following:
There’s also no training involved when you’re working with an agency, as they possess the expertise necessary to hit the ground running with your campaign.
Instead, you can reallocate that time to spend talking with your partner agency, working with designers and content writers to ensure your knowledge and expertise of the industry is translated to all parts of your marketing.
You have to ask yourself which is more valuable…working tirelessly with a limited staff to perform all the tasks necessary, or partner with an agency where you work with experts in marketing, graphic design, and content creation to implement your industry knowledge and expertise with inbound marketing best practices to your campaign.
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!