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How Hiring a Marketing Agency for SEO Can Be More Impactful and Cost-Effective

David Bosley

It seems like most businesses are outsourcing, these days. In 2019, efficiency and mobility matter—and harnessing the perfect in-house and outsourcing mixture is vital to your success. In 2019, marketing and advertising agencies netted about $54 billion in revenue—growing about 4.2 percent, annually, since 2014. While these agencies are enjoying a fertile business world ripe with a constant stream of new company SEO opportunities—their success doesn’t equate to proportional money lost for marketers and managers.

In fact—the opposite is true. Today’s business leaders are turning to marketing agencies to save money on SEO strategies—harnessing a number of benefits and opportunities fine-tuned to the modern professional world. These agencies provide several powerful options for SMBs and large companies alike, including:

  • Campaign advice
  • Account management
  • Advertising material production
  • Content creation

It isn’t rare to see businesses double down on agencies which purchase media space in the form of newspapers, audio, periodicals, and television, either. While modern marketing is primarily digital—these other avenues of advertisement are still part of the picture.

The Need for Varied Skills

At first glance, it can seem difficult to pin down exactly why businesses are opting for outsourced marketing solutions. Today, roughly 68 percent of in-house teams partner with external marketing agencies to boost their SEO strategies. What’s the deal?

Primarily, businesses are opting for marketing agencies due to cost efficiency. In the past, businesses shied away from outsourced help due to the general cost. Outsourced teams have access to a wide array of tools which enhance their SEO strategies—and they have access to a large network of partners to further enhance an SEO strategy’s relevancy. They continually invest in new tools—such as SaaS platforms, software, and data acquisition software. Because marketing agencies prioritize industry relevancy, they’re always training staff to react to trends at a moment’s notice.

Really, marketing agencies are one-size-fits-all resources—and they’re more likely to be ahead of the industry curve than in-house marketing teams. Today, outsourced marketing teams are much more available in terms of expenses and long-term company economics. Before we examine the overall impact and cost-efficiency of an outsourced team, however, let’s look at the bottom price line of acquisition: in-house versus outsourced team costs.

Base Costs: Are Outsourced Teams Less Expensive?Marketing agency base costs are far more affordable than those associated with typical in-house teams.

While many marketers are correct in assuming outsourced teams offer long-term cost efficiency due to ROI, they also assume the up-front costs of outsourced marketing teams are hefty. Fortunately, this isn’t the case.

According to Glassdoor.com, the average marketing manager salary is $78,141. It’s important to remember, however, that this salary accounts for one employee. To run a full in-house team of specialized marketers—equivalent in skill to agency-level experts—you’re looking at an annual expense of $742,000 to $1,019,500. If you opt for a team of generalists, expect to pay between $337,053 to $946,953.

So, how much does an outsourced marketing agency team cost per year? Interestingly enough, base costs are a fraction of those associated with in-house teams: about $24,000 to $96,000.

The In-House Hiring Problem

Hiring a marketing agency to handle your business’s marketing and advertisement is certainly less expensive, upfront—but do the reduced costs reflect long-term quality? Many businesses are rightly concerned about having a marketing department comprised of third-party providers. In-house teams are expected to be well-acquainted with the business’s architecture—crafting strategies which reflect, and benefit a company’s overall consumer approach.

This isn’t necessarily the case, however. In the past, outsourced marketing agencies did indeed lack insight into the business culture—as there simply weren’t enough resources to properly understand a business’s target markets, annual strategies, cross-market approaches, and market segmentation approach. Today, outsourced marketing agencies have numerous tools to grasp a company’s marketing approaches—enhancing them to be even more effective.

As such, outsourced marketing teams are—at the very least—equal in skill and capacity to in-house marketing teams. In many cases, they’re even better. All things constant, an important cost driver pops up as a definite drawback to in-house marketing teams: hiring costs.

Hiring capable in-house marketers can take months. Not only do managers need to spot effective marketers capable of grasping modern marketing climates, but they also need to find members capable of operating harmoniously as a department member responsible for optimization, strategy, and execution.

41 percent of companies report that the cost of a bad hire is over $25,000. In-house employees are expensive to find—and they’re even more expensive to position within a team. Can your business afford the cost setback? Many, unsurprisingly, can’t. The ongoing costs of an in-house team are hefty, once they’re examined closely:

-Computers and laptops

-Office supplies

-Monthly digital tool subscriptions

-Ongoing training

-Internet access and phone service

Marketing agency hiring costs, meanwhile, are much lower. When working with a marketing agency, you’re interacting with vetted hires—or marketing professionals who’ve already been through extensive screening processes, training, background checks, market analysis and more. Much like the in-house marketer, they’re constantly training to keep up with changing marketing conditions—only your business isn’t responsible for the associated costs.

A Look at the Outsourced Marketer’s Toolkit Outsourced marketing teams are outfitted with some of today’s most effective digital marketing tools.

It seems like there’s a digital marketing tool for everything, these days, including:

-Website crawlers

-Social audience locators

-Reporting software

-Backlink revealers

-SEO optimization kits

While many in-house teams utilize these tools, many are often ‘behind the times’ in terms of having the most up-to-date utilities which guarantee relevancy, efficiency and reliability. Remember: In-house marketing teams might be engrained in a company’s culture—but their greatest strength reveals a surprising weakness. They’re often held back by company-wide standards. If an in-house team isn’t equipped with up-to-date marketing tools by their surrounding corporate apparatus, their marketing strategies will suffer.

File Sharing Tools

Marketing agencies benefit from incredible interconnectivity between its respective marketers—as well as your business. By using file sharing tools like Dropbox and Evernote, the agency can rely on cloud-based, shareable services to sync photos, videos and text files. Dropbox for Teams is a recent Dropbox innovation finding its way into marketing agencies, too.

The toolkit is outfitted with a variety of tools which let users share folders both internally and externally—so your business has constant access to the resources utilized by the marketing agency.

Content Sourcing Tools

While many marketing agencies use specialized programs of their own design, several use the industry’s top-standard content sourcing tools to design, manage and promote powerful SEO strategies.

A great example of such a content sourcing tool is Design Wizard—which is a high-quality visual content source of over one million images—as well as over ten-thousand television-quality videos. While Design Wizard can be used by in-house teams, outsourced digital marketing agencies are often outfitted with the resources and skill needed to use Design Wizard to its fullest potential.

Content curation software like Curata, meanwhile, is designed to strategize and streamline the content curation, sharing and data research process. Curata lets marketing specialists measure content effectiveness across most marketing channels—spanning from website newsletters to social media posts. Because it can be integrated with most marketing automation platforms, it’s a powerful tool when attached to a marketing agency’s web analytics tools, social media marketing tools, content management systems and automation platforms.

Conversion Rate Boosting Tools

A marketing agency’s conversion rate optimization tools are often its driving resource behind ROI-increasing marketing campaigns. Tool-kits like Optimizely are full-fledged optimization platforms which enable A/B multivariate testing for an agency’s users—helping them enhance their mobile apps and websites alike to boost conversion rates and ROI.

Some marketing agencies use landing page conversion boosting tools like Unbounce, too. These tool-kits let marketers craft conversion-optimized landing pages from the ground up, including easy-use tools like one-click publishing, templates and A/B testing to guarantee an SEO strategy’s maximum effectiveness.

While these tool-kits are several examples of the modern marketing world’s most efficient resources—they’re still only examples. While some marketing agencies might utilize these tools to streamline certain marketing campaign processes, many marketing agencies still utilize their own tools to give businesses the most specialized services around. In most cases, too, an in-house team wielding these tools wouldn’t be as efficient as a third-party agency—which specializes in the use of them, using many resources in tandem to craft unbeatable strategies.

The Power of Outsourced SEO Marketing

SEO remains one of the top marketing activities to increase a business’s long-term benefits. Between a top-ranking brand website on Google and powerful lead generation strategies, a solid SEO agency can end up being a business’s primary ROI driver.

As we’ve already discussed: Using a marketing agency, alone, can boost a business’s overall ROI due to lowered costs, the acquisition of specialized marketers wielding powerful tools, increased brand relevancy and more. Marketing agencies thrive in the realm of SEO to an incredible degree, however—and it’s important to understand their particular potency within the modern marketing world.

Consumer-First Maneuverability

In 2019, keyword stuffing and informal, flat SEO content doesn’t work. Not only do they fail to appease Google’s ever-growing SEO standards—they fail to capture consumers in meaningful, memorable, ways. Unfortunately, businesses using in-house marketing teams to power SEO strategies are held back by the division of labor. Frequently, in-house content creators simply can’t keep up with modern SEO requirements while crafting a flexible, accessible content strategy.

Marketing agencies specialize in SEO—and their sole focus on a business’s marketing success allows them to craft SEO strategies which prioritize the consumer’s interest, time and integrity. By using in-depth analysis, research tools, and data management, a marketing agency can craft content which isn’t only organic—but also effective in terms of SEO.

A Higher Work Output

The same focus on marketing which allows third-party agencies to target consumers with laser-like precision also grants them the ability to reach unprecedented levels of work output. Because outsourced marketing agencies are comprised of marketing experts—experts who’re specialized in SEO—they can frequently provide powerful SEO content quicker than in-house marketing specialists.

In general, you’ll get more SEO content power per invested hour when turning to a marketing agency. Agencies also excel in long-term SEO campaign consistency, as they don’t have an element of vital employee turnover; because marketing agencies are powered by several specialist teams, they can maintain aggressive deadlines.

A Wider Audience Outreach

Much in the way marketing agencies have the time-management resources needed to create highly competitive SEO campaigns, they have the time-management resources to reach massive audiences. When a business’s marketing team is outsourced, it doesn’t struggle from the cumbersome elements of day-to-day business culture. Outsourced marketing teams only market—which means any time resources not dedicated to crafting SEO strategies are frequently dedicated to cross-channel marketing, social media marketing and mobile marketing.

Marketing agencies might prioritize SEO marketing, but they often include powerful social media marketing options to help businesses craft astounding consumer outreach ‘hubs’ which guarantee a higher degree of visibility. By combining a strong SEO strategy with the many technical branches of digital marketing, the agency can exponentially increase a brand’s influence on its consumers.

In-House Flexibility

It’s important to remember that outsourcing your marketing team frees up many resources within your business. Often, employee turnover negatively impacts in-house team members—members which often have difficulty jumping into an SEO campaign in progress. By relying on a third-party marketing cornerstone in part, or even entirely, you’ll relieve your employees of major in-house pressures.

Your outsourced marketing team can operate to meet strict deadlines, and it’s optimized to scale alongside your business. You needn’t worry about mismatching your company’s goals with your marketing agency’s approaches, either, as they’re constantly working to assure that all strategies are in-line with one another.

If you’re ready to maximize your business’s impact, hiring a marketing agency to handle your SEO marketing is a great idea. Leave the content to the professionals, and bring your brand to the next level.