Every business have a dedicated accountant  and lawyer to represent their business. You know that you cannot function without an accountant/bookkeeper and a lawyer to achieve desired results. Everyone in your team brings certain skills set, they have very different capabilities and capacities they can work under.

Similarly, online/digital marketing expertise is also something you cannot live without, as it is directly impacting your bottom line and top line sales. Digital marketing is growing so fast that in 2014 this industry will represent over  60$ billion in spending. Question is when you should start spending: Right Now! As your competition is already doing it.  Next challenge for businesses is how much they should be spending and should they hire inhouse or an outside marketing firm to help them achieve results.

Who Understands Your Business Better

Marketing firms fail to realize that business owners and businesses have different realities to face. Most of the firms fail to speak the language which businesses can relate to, they also fail to understand the values and strategic direction of the business.

When you hire a marketing firm you hire the whole team. Together they make a whole puzzle very simple like there is a creative team, webdesign team, media buying, content generation team etc. More importantly a Project manager who understand everyone’s skills set and brings everyone together on a single platform to get high quality results and get projects done. If you hire an inhouse person, it will going to cost you an average of industry standard salary and someone who brings alot of experience can easily inflate your human resources cost upto 80-100k. Also, you face a challenge that one person cannot be jack of all the trades. Marketing firms got a dedicated skill set which will cost you less than hiring a full time employee and you can leverage from all the expertise whole team can provide.

Digital Marketing firms unlike traditional marketing agencies apply pull strategies. Traditional marketing agencies are too comfortable with achieving results through push strategy as they already have set media which they buy. Pull strategy is not invasive and both a potential customer and business doesn’t have a conflict of interest. Push strategy used by traditional marketing agencies is very invasive and now potential consumers hate to see bombarded with tons of messages everyday. So, make sure you hire a digital marketing firm who understands digital landscape for your business rather then traditional marketing agencies. One thing digital marketing firms also specialize is analytics and precise data monitoring, which will get you maximum ROI, unlike sending 20k direct mails with no tracking mechanism or daily ad in a newspaper. Digital firms can tell precisely how exactly how many potential consumers you were able to engage, and conversion rates, leads, sales and brand awareness.

Budgeting for your Online Marketing

In major Canadian cities there are firms ranging from who will charge you over 50k just to make a website, and there are firms who will do it for 200$. This is where alot of business owners fail to recognize value. You don’t have to pay over blown price of 50k for a website but if you are more than a million $ top line sales company then you should be spending significant amount of money to signify your online real estate.  As a small and medium size business you have a very limited marketing budget. Here is a breakdown of how you can spread out your budget to achieve more reach:

 

 

This breakdown shows how small and medium size businesses can evenly spread their online presence. Look for a company who fits your budget, and understands your customer. If marketing firm understands your customer better, then they can deliver the reach and results properly. Look for companies who are not isolated and will only provide you service on a particular platform like Facebook, or Twitter. Hire a marketing agency which understands your current efforts, and give you a strategic integrated marketing plan to move forward which fits your budget and it is measurable & track able.