Marketing managers of growing companies look at their team, see the gaps and recognize what they need help doing. However, there’s a delicate balance as you grow — bringing the right people on board to grow the business without out-spending cash flow. Each HR decision must be carefully weighed against the revenue side of the equation. Making this transition is critical to growing from a small business to a market contender. Looking into an agency can have several advantages:

You cut the time required to locate, train, and manage dramatically.

The right agency knows your industry, is well-steeped in the buying values of your customers, and can quickly understand your product and go-to-market strategy. Finding an individual who has the skills and expertise that you require, together with the industry experience, can be a rather daunting and time-consuming task. You will always be the subject matter expert, but the burden of hiring individuals and getting them up to speed is much less than when dealing with an agency who specializes in your industry. If a new skill is required, it’s the agency’s job to hire and train the new employee, so you can focus on the things you do best.

Access to a team of experts

The marketing skills gap is very real. Addressed by Harvard Business Review and the New York Times:

“A skill gap is the difference between the skills required to complete a task and the actual skills possessed by an employee.”

Marketing covers a multitude of fronts, each facet with its own challenges, best practices, and required technical expertise. In order to have a fully-formed, optimal marketing program, it’s necessary to have a team of experts. Digital marketing / SEO, event execution, marketing automation, lead generation, creative content, social media, technical writing, graphic design, strategy, project management — the list can be extensive. Rather than keep each of these experts full-time in house, an agency can be the answer to the biggest “bang for your buck”.

Scalability and Financial Flexibility

If you experience fluctuations in sales at all, you will benefit from an “as needed” relationship with an agency. Perhaps there are busy seasons — trade shows or a product launch — for which you bring them in. No need to carry the overhead of a full staff 12 months out of the year.  Scale up when you need to without the commitment of permanent growth, and scale back as needed. A good agency should be able to accommodate you at every stage of your business.

Stay ahead of the latest technology and trends

Across the marketing landscape, both tools and best practices are ever-evolving. It takes commitment and time to stay abreast of these developments, but that investment is required to stay competitive. Your own employees can sink much productive time into investigation and education, but an agency shoulders this burden and presents to you the best fit for your business, saving your team time and energy for directly revenue-generating activities.

Get an outsiders perspective

“Siloed” or “myopic” thinking plagues even the best teams. Corporate culture, even in small companies, can dictate a particular vision or approach. One of the benefits of an agency is a team of people from diverse backgrounds and skill sets, all applying a fresh perspective to address your business needs. Perhaps it is a new outreach plan, or a new twist on a value proposition to more specifically speak to a customer’s challenge. A good agency is working for your best interest, is vested in your success, and provides creative solutions that could only come from an outside voice.

Conclusion

Growing your team one full-time employee at a time can be an arduous task.  Retaining a marketing agency can eliminate many of the hiring, training and managing burdens, as well as give you a ‘leg up’ when competing with the marketing departments of much larger firms.

Author’s Bio: Laura Cuttill is Practice Lead for Advertas. With 16 years in marketing and public relations, her clients have all been technology clients in oil and gas, software security, and healthcare. Her passion is establishing efficient processes, supported by great software, to enable successful marketing and lead generation programs.