Outsourced Marketing Services
In today's economy of endless digital platforms - and all the opportunities they provide, as well as a ever changing consumer landscape. More and more companies are deciding to outsource their marketing and strategy function to specialists.
Consider the following benefits of an Outsourced Marketing Function;
- 15 – 25% sales revenue gains
- 25 – 35% decrease in salaries plus overhead costs
- 10 – 25% decrease in overall marketing spending
- Access expertise in marketing strategy and implementation, as well as creative design, focused on the specific job or project at hand
- Get an outside perspective on your business
- Draw on outside experience with “what works and doesn’t work” scenarios
- Maintain the momentum with critical projects – they’ll never fall to the wayside, drop down the priority list, or become forgotten
- Engage only whenever and wherever you need resources – “on demand”
WHAT IS THE STATUS OF OUTSOURCED MARKETING SERVICES?
In today’s business climate, CEOs and executives are cautiously optimistic about the economy and their company’s future growth. They realise they still need to market to drive profitable growth and increase their company’s value, but the financial strings are being tightened. The other unknown aspect is whether they still have the internal edge for understanding market dynamics.
Most people believe that keeping everything internal will lead to greater efficiency.
There is a clear growing trend, however, for companies, regardless of size or industry, to outsource (which used to be referred to as sub-contracting) - this is now just another element of their business. Outsourcing is not a passing fad, but clearly a paradigm shift that can change a business model for the better by using resources outside the organisation to perform specific tasks.
Harvard Business School professors Gail J. McGovern and John Quelch documented the trend in an article in the March issue of Harvard Business Review. One reason behind the move? - 'While company marketing departments have plenty of talented right-brain, creative types, they may lack the left-brain analytics needed to better understand their customers in today's information-rich environment.'
Companies often forget to ask the basic question: What business are we in? Too often the need to perform various functions and to keep a business running does not allow management to step back and ask this question. The answer should bring management to the fundamental product or service that generates revenue for the company.
In his book, Living on the Fault Line (HarperCollins, 2000), Geoffrey Moore said, all employees should be focused on core activities—that is, things that contribute to a company's competitive advantage and increase shareholder value. The opposite of core is context: activities that do not contribute to competitive advantage. Context activities should be outsourced.
Outsourcing marketing services allows businesses to focus funds and control head count, allowing a company to hand over responsibility for an outsourced function within clearly defined management guidelines and then monitor future performance. When you break down the costs of a full marketing department internally, versus the cost of outsourcing marketing services with an external partner, the business case is stunningly clear.
In a real-world example, a company can see a 15 – 25% revenue improvement in the first year and a 25 – 45% cost savings is immediate. Other benefits that make this a compelling case to look at are:
- Lower cost
- Instant Availability
- Talent and experience
- External Objectivity
- Agile Flexibility
WHAT IS THE VALUE OF OUTSOURCING MARKETING?
Access expertise in marketing strategy and implementation, as well as creative design. An in-house team may not have developed the skills you need. Outsourcing marketing services to an experienced team that integrates seamlessly into your infrastructure will infuse your organisation with new energies and ideas. You’ll introduce fresh and innovative marketing and sales approaches to your customers and business partners. And they are focused only on these disciplines.
Get an outside perspective on your business. Sometimes you can get too close to your business and not see your marketing strategies, programs, or materials from your audience’s perspective. Even though you may know your business inside and out by living and breathing it each day, your perspective is still one-sided. To market successfully to your current audience – and capture new markets – you need to step out of your shoes and into your target markets’ or customers’. Having a group on the “outside” supporting your needs helps to give you the customers’ perspective, not just your company’s.
Use outside experience with “what works and doesn’t work” scenarios. Whether it’s planning, copyrighting, or designing, the right outsource team will have had experience with a variety of different marketing and communication strategies, techniques, and tools. You can rely on their lessons over the years to find the correct solution for your business challenge.
Maintain the momentum with critical projects – they’ll never fall to the wayside, drop down the priority list, or become forgotten. Today, people change jobs, or are hit with lay-offs, while in the middle of projects. When those people leave the company, they will most likely take the project assets with them (in the form of tribal knowledge). When you outsource marketing relationships, you have one centralised team as your partner, and your knowledge assets remain protected and archived for future use.
Hire only whenever and wherever you need resources (on-demand). Hiring full-time staff can be very costly when you add up wages, insurance coverage, office equipment and supply needs, training costs, etc. Don't forget to add to the calculation the cost of a bad hire. The commonly referenced cost of a bad hire is 2.5 times the annual salary. In most small to mid-sized organisations, marketing can be outsourced while they focus on the core. Finding an outsourcing partner allows you the flexibility to bring on talented, knowledgeable experts exactly when and where you need them. And you don’t have to manage or train the entire team – the outsource marketing firm does that while you focus on the daily needs of running your own business and generating revenue!
Cost reductions: Not only does outsourcing save money in salaries and overhead, but the outsourcing partner can also save a company money in direct purchases on marketing programs as well (e.g., printing, media buys, advertising, etc.). By leveraging their supplier, a good outsourcing partner can manage to save a company anywhere from 10 – 25% in their overall marketing spending.