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Should B2B Marketing Be Outsourced or In-house?

Posted by John Hatton on 30-Sep-2014 17:25:00

Outsourced lead generation achieves 43% better results than in-house – Marketing Sherpa 

If you’re at a cross-roads on deciding whether to employ an in-house marketing team or partner with an agency, you aren’t the only one. Both options have their individual pros and cons. What makes the decision harder is that there isn’t a straight answer, nor is there an ‘if in scenario A use option one, and if in scenario B choose option two’ solution.

It is up to you to weigh up the benefits of each route and decide which path is best for your business, depending on your company’s situation, needs and goals.

B2B Marketing Outsourced InHouse

In-house marketing

The main argument in favour of keeping B2B marketing activity in-house centres around the communication of expertise. A dedicated team that sits within the company’s offices will have intrinsic knowledge of the business and its products/services. Every day, marketers are becoming more aware of the importance of inbound marketing, and in particular: content. This relies on in-depth articles that position key personnel within your company as industry experts and pioneers of change. The concern is that this expertise won’t be communicated to an external team clearly enough – resulting in lost time and productivity.

There’s also new technology. Software is now so sophisticated that it’s possible for some small companies to have a single person run their entire marketing operation. That said, creating high-quality content is a time-consuming job. Depending on the sophistication of your campaigns, a skilled, multi-disciplined team might be needed.

Outsourced marketing

There are many benefits to outsourcing:

• Time saving for you and your team
• A fresh pair of eyes to review campaigns
• Cost savings – especially when it comes to the infrastructure that is necessary for success, but so often overlooked when companies market themselves (marketing automation software, data lists, general equipment, etc.)

But the biggest reason to outsource must be the resource. You are partnering with a team of experts. Let’s face it, having an in-house team that includes copywriters, graphic designers, social media, PPC et al, requires significant investment. In fact, 62% of B2B marketers say a lack of resources presents their greatest barrier to success (Harvard Business Review).

Furthermore, agency staff are highly trained (a cost that you do not pay), they will be up to date with the latest industry techniques, and have extensive experience.

As stated above, some marketers worry that their expertise on an industry will be lost in communication with an agency. But there are steps you can take to ensure your voice of authority isn’t lost if an agency drafts your content – find out how by reading our blog on outsourcing content here.

Ultimately, the decision you make depends on how you perceive your company’s situation and what you think will be the best model to achieve your targets. It is worth noting that it isn’t a case of all or nothing, there is a halfway house. According to a recent study by the Content Marketing Institute, 44 percent of B2B marketers rely on outsourcing content creation – so you have the option to outsource specialist tasks and have an in-house team to take care of day-to-day activity.

If you want to find out more about how to improve your marketing ROI… 

Read our new ebook: B2B Marketing ROI - Measuring Success

Topics: B2B Inbound marketing, B2B Lead Generation, B2B, B2B marketing, B2B Marketing Agency, B2B Marketers, Marketing Agency, Outsourced Marketing