Outsourcing Content to an Agency: When and Why

As businesses face new marketing challenges, they must search for solutions outside of their own companies. In a recent webinar, Social Marketing & The Resourcing Challenge: Outsourcing vs. In-House, sponsored by ORACLE, a panel of professionals discussed when and why a business should outsource content marketing to an agency.

The panel agreed that, though the answer depends on the overall goal of the company, an agency can offer you:

TIME

  • Time is something that you can’t afford to take away from your business, especially if it is a small or medium sized business. When you and your team are already wearing multiple hats, it is more efficient to your business to find a new head than to add to your own. Mikal Belicove, contributing writer for Forbes Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine, said that your business should outsource to an agency because they “take the time.” Instead of taking time and focus away from your business and core competencies, an agency can do it for you.

EXPERTISE

  • With so many moving parts in your business, it is difficult to focus on specific aspects. An agency acts as an extension of your marketing department that focuses on these specific campaigns and strategies. Chris Vaughn, Director of Marketing at DigitalSherpa, spoke about how two years ago, agency expertise was in question, but now “they’re taking content more seriously.” Because digital marketing constantly changes, it is important to use the best practices of an agency to conquer your challenges. Rob Key, CEO at Converseon, said that a “strong role of agencies is to bring expertise about SEO and content.”

THE 5TH P

  • As technology has advanced, the marketing mix has evolved to not only include promotion, price and place, but also – participation. When, before, your company’s engagement with an agency was limited, there was no sense of participation. Now, it has become the most important aspect! “Outsourcing doesn’t work without participation,” Vaughn said. With current technology, agencies, especially those savvy in digital, such as Hüify, have the capability of working closer than ever with companies. To work most efficiently, an agency must have a strong relationship with your company.
Though agencies can offer these aspects to your business, sometimes deciding whether to stay in-house or to outsource is a more difficult decision. When asked ‘when?’ Belicove talked about the two best times for a company to resource an agency.

 

1.    When a business is getting started, or is still young, an agency can most efficiently help integrate participation into their marketing mix. This is a great time to form a relationship with an agency because it allows them to learn about the core competencies and culture of the company. Key said that agencies can “bring training” and are most effective when they are “embedded in your culture.”

2.    Also, businesses will always need content, especially now that content marketing has grown into one of the most vital aspects of digital marketing. An agency can help by applying their best content practices to a companies needs. One thing that Belicove sited to be true is that it is and always will be “easier to edit than to create content.”

When it comes to whether your business should stay in-house or outsource content, it mostly depends on your specific needs and resources. If you decide to outsource to an agency, be sure that their culture reflects your own to ensure that you create an effective relationship.

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