10 Considerations: Hiring an External Growth Marketing Team vs. an Individual Marketing Contributor

BillDemand Generation

growth marketing team

Launching a business is not unlike birthing a baby: both are painful in their own way and both force you to make huge decisions that could very well impact the rest of your life. No pressure, right? One major issue you’ll doubtlessly find yourself pondering is whether to hire an external growth marketing team or an individual marketing contributor. While onboarding a single person seems less daunting, hiring an agency is a decision that comes with a ton of perks – as well as a few possible downfalls.

Pros for Hiring an External Growth Marketing Team

Partner with an agency and you’re strengthening your brand’s standing while also bolstering the types and quality of services you can, in turn, offer your own clients.

  1. Mitigated Risk: It may sound insensitive, but the truth is that the sick days and vacation time your employees take are liabilities. Offering those benefits to full-time hires is the right thing to do but it’s also risky. If half your office is out with the flu or otherwise unable to handle an incoming project or important task, your productivity is in peril. Agencies provide the coverage and depth a single in-house employee simply can’t.
  2. Cost Savings: Employees require health insurance, 401K retirement plans, disability, paid leave – all kinds of things that are fantastic but costly. When you hire an agency, those factors no longer apply.
  3. Robust Skill Sets: We handpicked each of our flux+flow team members because their talents combine to make us dynamic and powerful. There’s a method to the madness of building a marketing agency; the key is to have individual contributors with a variety of skills so you can complement whatever mix of abilities clients already have.
  4. Banish the Hiring TimeSuck: On average, it takes 23.8 days to hire a new employee. When you’re busy reading resumes, scheduling interviews, and checking up on references, you’re neglecting other tasks that only you can complete. In other words, you’re splitting your focus, and your business is likely to suffer from the distraction. Hire an external growth team and you’re instantly connected to a pre-vetted pool of talent that’s at your disposal whenever the need arises.
  5. Say Goodbye to Onboarding: As if those nearly 24 days of hiring time weren’t enough of a drain on company resources, it then takes about 90 days for that new hire to get up to speed. That training costs money, adds further distraction, taxes your management, and even then you could be faced with someone who fails to succeed or fit within the company culture.
  6. No Worrying About Retention: About half of new hourly employees leave their position within the first 120 days. That’s a maximum of 30 days (using the 90-day onboarding time as a guide) that you’ll be able to use that individual contributor’s skills before you’re left bereft and forced to start the entire recruitment, hiring, and training process all over again.

Even if you’re unsure that an agency is the ideal long-term solution for your marketing needs, hiring an external growth marketing team gives you an opportunity to test the waters. Once you see firsthand what services and skill sets your business avails itself of the most, you can better narrow your hiring parameters to bring in the individual likely to be the best fit.

Potential Cons of Hiring a Marketing Agency

Marketing agencies are powerful and multifaceted entities that could very well ratchet your business up a level (or six), but there are some potential downsides you should consider as well:

  1. Tenuous Cultural Bonds: Your agency lives and works outside your office and operates beyond the cozy company culture already binding your in-house team together. Those in-jokes aren’t always going to land and your contract marketer may not instantly understand how management thinks. It takes time to build familiarity and then transform that closeness as a professional commodity.
  2. Less Skin in the Game: You’re not your agency’s only client and your success may not matter to them as much as it matters to you. Whereas a full-time hire likely feels invested in your brand’s future, an external agency has other accounts to fall back on. Still, no one wants a failure on their record and good outcomes benefit all involved.
  3. Shallow Depth of Knowledge: With a broad roster of clients comes less concentration on your company’s products, services, and general history. Agencies aren’t on-site to witness and absorb the little things the same way an in-house employee would be.
  4. Outsiders Take Time to Acclimate: Relationships, trust, and a meaningful rapport all take time. If agency representatives always interact with the same point of contact, they may not develop connections with other departments. That invisible barrier could delay communication or even lead to missteps.

Each potential negative above is enough to make most business owners hesitate before hiring an agency, but there’s another fact worthy of consideration: Not all agencies are pried out of the same tired mold. There are external growth marketing teams that take pride in contributing to client successes, who want to become an integral part of a brand’s bigger picture, be less of an outsider and more of an integral cog in the big, bad business wheel. flux+flow is that agency.

Schedule a call today to learn how flux+flow can jumpstart your growth marketing strategy and exponentially bump up your internal efficiency.