Here’s an interesting tidbit about how far outsourcing marketing has come in just the past 10 or so years.
According to a 2005 Harvard Business Review article, about 53% of respondents in a Forrester survey of B2B marketing executives aimed to outsource more than half their marketing activities in 2004. Flash forward over a decade later, and we find this trend in marketing outsourcing growth still very much holding steady as shown in the 2016 CMO Survey report.
This only goes to show that, for most organizations, outsourcing their marketing functions is a viable business decision. So, is your company part of this group, too?
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach when deciding whether to outsource marketing activities or to carry them out in-house. That’s why this decision needs to be made on a per-situation basis, ideally separately for each area in your marketing program.
To help you decide, here are five reasons to outsource part or all of your marketing initiatives, as well as the stats to back them up.
This is, by far, the most overwhelmingly compelling reason for outsourcing marketing responsibilities. It’s hard to pin down exact figures on how much cost reductions outsourcing can bring, but a commonly-cited benchmark is that outsourcing an entire marketing team costs less than having one full-time marketing professional on staff.
That is, outsourcing lets you tap people who can get the job done minus the overhead, onboarding, and other expenses related to having an internal marketing team.
#2: Expertise and Experience
Another top reason why organizations choose to outsource marketing is that they lack the relevant expertise to carry out specific marketing tasks. In fact, a CMO Survey report from a few years back has found this to be the number one motivation why companies sought out the services of marketing agencies, even ahead of cost savings.
“Indeed, why would you hire some agency to do the marketing for you when you have an in-house team and your own CRM (Customer Relationship Management) platform at your disposal? Simple: the best way to do lead generation is to not do any of it. Let the experts handle it.” says Christian
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Outsourcing makes business sense if you don’t think the value from developing skills related to a marketing function can exceed the value you get from an expert doing the same task.
#3: Scope and Scale
Gleanster Research reports that as much as 34% of average-performing B2B companies feel that their current marketing processes won’t be able to scale up and meet their marketing challenges in the next 1 to 3 years. That’s why the ability to ramp up marketing activities in response to new opportunities is a key benefit that an outsourced marketing agency can offer.
The responsibilities of assigning more people on a project, upgrading marketing systems/processes, and expanding a program’s scope rest mainly, if not solely, on your outsourcing partner.
#4: Tried-and-tested Processes
Generating high-quality leads is the number one challenge that B2B marketers face and, with nearly 7 in 10 marketers still unable to identify their funnel, the primary reason for this issue is the lack of clearly-defined processes.
Doing these processes in-house takes up resources not only in terms of people but tools and technology as well. Outsourcing frees up these commitments so that you’re able to prioritize other more critical areas of your business. Check out this List of the Best Marketing Tools to INCREASE Sales Leads Production!
#5: Performance and Accountability
According to the Fournaise Marketing Group, as much as 90% of marketers are not trained in marketing performance and ROI, while another 80% find it difficult to justify the effectiveness of their marketing spend.
Good marketing service providers can clearly explain how results are measured as well as justify the benchmarks to compare against. Combined with transparent pricing and costs, outsourcing to a third-party provider can help you attain and gauge returns more effectively.
Of course, outsourcing is not for everyone, nor is it applicable in every situation. Again, the decision whether or not to outsource needs to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. While the numbers we’ve cited here point to the benefits of outsourcing marketing, the stats that really matter will be your marketing metrics.