One of the hardest lessons that many small business owners learn is that the entrepreneurial spirit will only carry you so far. Your instinct to “do it all” is a strong one – after all, it’s what motivated you to start a business in the first place. But there will come a time where you’re doing yourself and your entire company a disservice if you insist on having full control over absolutely everything.
Case in point: Marketing. In the early days of your business, it makes sense to save money by creating all of your collateral in-house. At a certain point, however, you’re going to need to hire a marketing agency to take your entire organization to the next level. There are a few key signs that you should watch out for that will point towards the fact that your business is ready to hire a marketing agency.
Is Your Business Ready to Hire a Marketing Agency?
Marketing Agencies and Your Business: Important Considerations
The biggest sign that your business is ready to hire a marketing agency is that your own results have plateaued and you just can’t seem to build momentum again. Your website traffic isn’t what it used to be, the metrics you use to define success (like customer lifetime value) aren’t growing and you’re not capturing as many leads as you would like, no matter what you try. At this point, you need to bring someone new into the fold – someone who isn’t quite as close to your company as you are – to reinvigorate things and take your efforts to the next level.
Likewise, perhaps one of the most compelling reasons that you might be ready to hire a marketing agency is because it’s become a full-time job – which is problematic, as you’ve already got one of those that should be monopolizing your time. You don’t have the hours in the day that you need to properly manage your social channels, or to design new collateral, or to measure the success of past campaigns. As a result, everything suffers.
Bringing a marketing agency into the fold does more than just remove some of these items from your plate – it makes sure that every effort has the attention it needs to generate maximum impact with your target audience.
Signs You May Not Be Ready to Hire a Marketing Agency
On the other hand, there are also a number of important signs that indicate you may not be ready for a marketing agency partnership after all. Marketing agencies sell products, not ideas – if you just have a good idea for a product but no actual physical product to speak of, you may want to hold off on hiring an agency until they have something they can get behind.
Likewise, a large part of a marketing agency’s efforts will involve directing as many new people as possible to your company website. If that website is old, outdated or low quality, it shouldn’t be marketed. You need more than just search engine optimization (SEO) – you need a site that acts as a conversion machine, where it is easy for users to fill out forms and for marketers to capture leads. Partner with a designer to get your website up to speed and then you can think about hiring a marketing agency.
There may come a day where the results that you’re expecting from your marketing campaigns will actually surpass the capabilities of your in-house marketers to achieve them. At that point, you’re only doing yourself a disservice if you attempt to keep everything as close to the vest as possible. Making the decision to hire a marketing agency will help you leverage the experience, infrastructure, and the insight that is necessary to continue to grow and attract new customers for years to come.