B2B marketing: to outsource or not to outsource?

Last updated: 15th November 2023

No one knows your business as well as yourself, so when it comes to promoting your products and services, it can be tempting to think that no one can do it as well as you do. However, research shows that nearly two-thirds of B2B companies outsource at least some of their marketing activities. So, what’s the best approach?

No one knows your business as well as yourself, so when it comes to promoting your products and services, it can be tempting to think that no one can do it as well as you do. However, research shows that nearly two-thirds of B2B companies outsource at least some of their marketing activities,1 and data from the Chartered Marketing Institute evidences that 50% outsource some of their content marketing.2

So, what’s the best approach? As a B2B marketing agency, we work every day with in-house teams, supporting them to create great campaigns that get results. So, we are aware of the invaluable subject-expertise that in-house experts bring to the table. However, we also love it when we can contribute with our specialist marketing skills, helping our clients bring their ideas to life and supporting them in reaching a wider audience.

The right approach to your B2B marketing will depend on your business’ needs and priorities. However, having worked both in agency and in house, we can confidently say that a combination of both generally leads to the best results, provided that your marketing partner fully understands your industry, target audience and goals.

Are you considering joining the two thirds of B2B businesses that outsource at least some of their marketing? Read on to find out more about the benefits of this approach.

Accessing a wider skills pool 

There’s no doubt that many talented marketers work in-house: we see evidence of this every day while working with our clients. But time and resources can put a limit to the kind of expertise businesses can access. 

B2B marketing is now so complex that it’s very difficult for businesses to build a marketing department with all the specialists they need. Ideally, you should have access to a PR specialist, a content writer, a digital marketing expert, a graphic designer, a web developer, an SEO expert, a data specialist – and the list goes on. Not only can this quickly become unaffordable: many businesses might not need all these figures on a regular basis, but would benefit from their expertise from time to time. 

Collaborating with a fully integrated agency means you can get access to a wide pool of specialists, flexing your retainer to call on a digital expert one day, or a content writer the next – depending on your needs. 

Having access to so many experts also means you’ll never be in a position of having to pass on an opportunity because your team is too busy. Imagine that you’d like to get in touch with a journalist to react to a breaking news story, but your marketing team has too much on their plates already. With no extra support available, you might have to give up. But with a simple phone call to one of our brilliant PR specialists, you might end up with a valuable piece of media coverage. 

Saving on marketing costs

Partnering with an agency can also be good cost-wise. The cost of hiring a new employee goes well beyond their salary: you will also need to consider the time and cost of training or upskilling them, as well as the cost of productivity lost in the process. 

All things considered, it can be much cheaper to rely on an experienced agency when and if needed. This will give you peace of mind that the agency will take care of the continuous training of their employees, and will most likely have the need and resources for staff to undergo specialist training in their specific areas of expertise. 

Getting the green light from other departments

Although innovative businesses are breaking down silos among different departments, there is often a disconnect between the marketing team and other areas of the business. 

Bringing an agency on board can help you break down barriers among different areas of the business. The process of onboarding an agency means having to engage with different departments, asking questions to understand their needs and priorities, and conveying that information to your agency. 

As a result, this can make employees from other areas of the business feel seen and heard, and might help deal with any resistance to implementing changes both to the existing marketing strategy and to other areas of the business.

Coming up with new ideas

Knowing your business inside out can be incredibly helpful, but when it comes to looking at things from a different perspective, it is not always beneficial. Sometimes, a fresh pair of eyes can spot opportunities to think outside the box and find exciting new ways to market your products and services. This could be as simple as trying a new social media channel – for example, did you see our guide on Tik Tok for B2B brands? – or it could even involve exploring new audiences and tapping into new markets. 

Having the support of specialists in a variety of fields could also allow you to experiment with tools and techniques that you might have wanted to try for ages, without knowing how to get started. For example, have you always wanted to hold a press conference, but are nervous at the prospect of having to speak to journalists? No problem, our PR pros can help. 

Establishing and reaching KPIs

You probably already have some marketing goals in place, and are aware of how they align with your overall business strategy. But are you regularly keeping track of progress? And do you have a reliable strategy for continuous improvement? 

Monitoring progress and planning for the future can be difficult when you’re busy with day-to-day operations. However, any good agency knows that their work will be judged on results, and will be happy to regularly report on how your campaigns are delivering against KPIs, and on what can be done to improve them.

Collaborating with an experienced B2B marketing agency can help you maximise your budget’s potential, ensuring you have access to the specialists you need, when you need them. If you’d like to discuss how that could benefit your business, The Marketing Pod team will be happy to answer your questions. Get in touch today.

1 https://www.rightsourcemarketing.com/marketing-strategy/why-two-thirds-b2b-companies-outsource-marketing-2/

2 https://www.rightsourcemarketing.com/marketing-strategy/why-two-thirds-b2b-companies-outsource-marketing-2/ 

N.B. The information contained in this entry is provided by the above supplier, and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie