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What are the pros and cons of in-house vs. outsourced marketing?

What are the reasons to turn to marketing or advertising companies? When does the disadvantage of doing it yourself outweigh the advantage of outsourcing?

Top voted answer
Sonja Ceri

Sonja Ceri, CMO at

So you started a new company. An online webshop where you sell your handmade jewelry. Or you launched an app to connect traders with the right people. Or you just published a book that you want to promote. You are probably extremely proud of your product and you want everyone to know about it. But you quickly realise there is no easy way to get your excitement heard.

A different scenario. You have been in your business for a while and you’ve put a lot of thought and effort in your marketing strategies. But you’re still waiting for the results that you were hoping to get. You have tried different strategies and approaches but you can’t put your finger on what’s going wrong.

Both these problems have the same solution: a marketing agency. Bring in a creative agency that can assist you with all your marketing will help your business grow rapidly. Marketing agencies are well experienced and have extensive knowledge on different aspects of marketing programs. They have a team of experts ready for you and know exactly how to get you the boost in sales you were hoping for.

By using a marketing effort you can get the guidance you were looking for. Together with the agency you look at what your targets are, what you’ve been doing so far and what went wrong. After this digital audit, they develop - together with you - a marketing strategy that aligns with your mission.

But it doesn’t stop there. Marketing agencies don’t just paint the big picture and leave you with an official or technical marketing strategy document. They will also help you with the implementation and training of your team, and they will assist you as long as you need.

And if you want, agencies can also just fully take over. They manage your social media accounts, control your website, help you with setting up your monthly newsletters and run ads to get more traffic or brand awareness. With a marketing agency behind the wheel that makes sure you’re heading in the right direction, you have more time to focus on what you want to achieve.

Marketing agencies are flexible and can be hired for exactly those aspects of your marketing that you want to outsource. Furthermore, marketing agencies are available without breaking the bank and often turn out to be more cost efficient. By investing your marketing budget is someone with the expertise needed to reach your targets, you can trust that your ROI will increase significantly.

So whether you’re a small business in its infancy or a multi-dollar company that just isn’t getting bang for their marketing buck: hiring a marketing agency will help you with implementing a fresh marketing approach that will lead to better outcomes for your business.

Erik Bigalk

Erik Bigalk, Founder and CEO at

Top 20% Marketing

Firstly, unless you are proficient and have skills, and experience in marketing, you are essentially hacking your marketing. And, while there is nothing wrong with that or doing a trial-and-error or flying-by-the-seat-of-your-pants approach, it is invaluable to talk with people in the know.

So, regardless of whether you want to go it on your own or not, I would talk to a marketing and /or advertising firm or better yet a few of them...  There are ample resources available online but hearing some feedback or suggestions from professionals can give you the key insight that might make all your efforts pay off event the better.

However, when we stand back from the ins and outs of marketing and the strategy you might think to be right, your marketing budget and all that, and simply look at the energetics of your business for a moment...   I want to invite you to consider this...

What is your USP in your business? (USP unique selling point)

What are your core skills/attributes that make you - you, and hence make you essential in your business?

What are you best at? And, what is your time worth?

Once you reflect on these (yes jot your thoughts and insights down on paper) you may find that you are much more needed to be putting time and energy into your core areas of expertise and drive your business forward with your strengths rather than lose countless hours trying figure out your own marketing when it is not your core strength. Perhaps you can make more with the business than it costs you to hire an expert or outsource your marketing to a firm. 

Marketing is super important, as important as a good product or service and proficient operation and of course sales and service, so don't cut corners on marketing just because you think you can do it all yourself. The most successful entrepreneurs and businesses are so successful because they either hold the key strengths in their business talent or they hire or outsource these to people with the key skills in order to focus themselves on their strengths. Sir Richard Branson does not know how to run an airline or fly a plane, but he has the best people in the industry around him who do. He could not possibly run 500 companies let alone market these based on his skill set. he is great at collaborating, developing the vision and attracting the right people to collaborate with, fund his projects and so on...  He even does most of his writing and creative processes in a notebook, not a computer...

So, be the Richard Branson in your business and surround yourself with the right experts so you can focus on what you are best at. If that means hiring a marketing firm that can do what needs to be done in half the time it would take you, then leave marketing to them...   Best. If you have any specific questions, reach out 

William Siebler

William Siebler, CEO at

Top 10% Marketing

The basic rule is if you don't have the expertise you need in house or your current marketing is not performing as well as you would like.

You need to be careful who you choose.

Any provider should start with a deep dive into your business, client needs and competition.

They should also look at your long term goals so the strategy that is created takes you towards reaching those.

It is cost effective IF your core skills are not marketing. You free up time to focus on where you can add the most value to the business and get expert help where you are weaker.

Paige Arnof-Fenn

Paige Arnof-Fenn, Founder & CEO at Mavens & Moguls

Top 10% Marketing

You have one chance to make a great first impression so if you are launching a busioess, website, new product or service and you do not have the right expertise in house then it is time to bring in professionals who can help.  Don't risk diluting your brand or putting your business in a position where it will cost more money and time to get the right words and pictures out there to tell your story.  If you need help ask for it, it is rarely too early and often too late in my experience.  Good luck!

Terry Chadban

Terry Chadban, Founder/Manager at Port Macquarie Online Marketing

Unless your expertise is marketing or advertising, as soon as you decide to go into business! Way too many small business owners spend way too much time trying to 'learn marketing', as well as spending 80-100 hours a week in the business, when they would be much better off time-wise as well as financially just bringing in an expert from Day One.

Most marketing agencies will offer a free consultation where they will sit down with you and discover the wants and needs for your specific business, then draw up a marketing plan for you. You can then implement it yourself by just following the numbers, or better still, hire them to do it for you and get on with the reason you started the business in the first place.

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