Do you need to improve optimization? Hire an SEO expert. Do you want better content? Hire a writer. Are you lacking strategy? Hire a marketing strategist.

It’s the process most small businesses owners go through before realizing an agency may be the way to go. If you’re questioning the “best practices” your team implemented, then you may be on the wall about hiring an agency. But how do you know it’s the right move?

That’s what we’ll discuss today. To ensure you’re making the right choice, we’ll explore:

  • What a digital marketing agency does
  • What to think about when making your decision
  • Pros and cons of hiring an agency

What Does a Digital Marketing Agency Do?

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Small businesses start with small teams. So, they often lack the time, budget, and marketing knowledge to implement the marketing activities they need to increase their visibility online.

Hiring a digital marketing agency to manage these tasks eliminates these challenges. Drives your business closer to achieving its digital marketing goals.

Here’s an overview of what an agency can do:

  • Create custom marketing strategies based on your vision and goals
  • Implement highly targeted campaigns to provide the best return on investment (ROI) for your business
  • Track the progress and success of your marketing campaigns
  • Deliver custom, comprehensive reports and discuss new problem areas and techniques that boost the success of your business
  • Evaluate the results of your strategies and marketing campaigns to identify what’s driving the most revenue for your business
  • Generate web traffic and leads
  • Increase sales for your business
  • Free up time and allow your in-house marketing team to focus on other tasks

Now, let’s shift gears to what to consider when deciding to hire an agency.

What You Should Think About When Making Your Decision

Deciding to hire a digital marketing agency is easy —picking one is the tricky part. So, what should you think about when deciding to hire one?

Here are a few things to consider during the decision-making process:

  • Time to productivity: How much time does it take for the agency to understand your business and its needs? This gauges how fast they’ll start working on your project and achieve the agreed deliverables.
  • Costs: Agencies factor in their hours on proposals, training their teams, and other expenses for hiring full-time employees. Some state rates range between $1,800 to $6,000 per month. Others claim it can increase as high as $12,000 per month.
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  • Flexibility: Agencies offer scalable packages to increase or decrease your spending as needed.
  • Strategic output: Agencies bring deep knowledge, experience, and an external perspective needed to take your business to the next level.
  • Deliverables vs. time: An agency delivers projects and results specified by you on time and within budget.

Do You Need Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing is no longer an option — it’s pivotal to running a successful business. Without digital marketing, it’s challenging to get the visibility your small business needs to generate leads, increase sales, and grow.

Having a website, social media profiles, and blog isn’t digital marketing. Those are simply digital assets. Now, you need a strategy that brings together your assets to deliver business growth.

Adding digital marketing to your strategy is good because it:

  • Reaches a wide audience of people
  • Carries lower costs
  • Attributes outcomes to specific strategies
  • Tracks conversions, email open rates, homepage visits, or direct purchases
  • Collects customer data more precisely
  • Provides two-way communication with customers
  • Moves customers through the sales funnel

Pros of Hiring a Digital Marketing Agency

  • Cost-effective: It’s more economical to hire an agency than to train new employees, such as benefits, sick days, and vacation time. You’re hiring an expert at a lower rate than hiring an entry-level digital marketer or in-house team.
  • Specialized team: From copywriters and content creators to web designers, data analysts, SEO experts, PPC advertisers, social media managers, and more, an agency offers a team of experts with specialized skill sets. Instead of hiring a jack of all trades, it makes sense to outsource roles that require specialized knowledge.
  • Fresh perspective: An agency brings a fresh set of eyes and new perspectives on how to market your business with collectively more knowledge than one employee.
  • Access to current marketing knowledge and tools: Agencies have access to intelligence, networks, multiple state-of-the-art marketing tools, and backgrounds to execute large-scale campaigns.
  • Lesser workload: Outsourcing digital marketing operations to an agency reduces your workload. Plus, there’s no learning, testing, or analyzing on your end.
  • Budget tracking: An agency monitors everything about your digital marketing strategies and campaigns. They’ll also report monthly on marketing spend and ROI.

    Cons of Hiring Digital Marketing Agency

    Most drawbacks of hiring a digital marketing agency stem from internal issues. Here’s a glimpse of the challenges you may encounter if you decide to hire an agency:

    • Learning curve: An agency can learn your business, but they won’t understand it as you do. They’ll rely heavily on what you know to stay on target, meaning you’ll need several conversations to ensure alignment with marketing campaigns and your business goals.
    • Less control: Outsourcing digital marketing to an agency may rob you of the personal touch, especially when the agency handles everything. You may feel you’re losing control of your business.
    • Hidden fees: Some agencies aren’t upfront about all of their fees. Then, the pricing may increase if you choose to add more services later.
    • Agency clients: You aren’t the only client the agency works with. So, their resources and time may spread thin. Check to see their bandwidth to ensure your projects get enough attention.
    • The project may sink: If an agency does a poor job, you and your team have to clean up the mess. You can’t apply the wasted capital, trust in agencies sinks, and you lose the time you’d have spent launching a new product or feature.
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    The right agency can scale your business faster, with less cost structure, and more effectively than doing it alone.

    So, if you decide it’s the right next move for your business, then take time to interview agencies and learn your options. Choose one that understands your industry and can show proven results.

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