There’s power in numbers. The more content you create, the higher your chances are of reaching a larger audience. But being a content creation powerhouse takes a lot of time, money and effort. That’s a large task for even the most adept in-house team.
The most important focus for any in-house marketing team is driving the strategy behind the content that’s created. From there, they can choose who they want to write the content itself.
Which begs the question: Is outsourcing right for you?
Freelance writers are, most of the time, gifted writers in specific industries, oftentimes with extensive professional experience in those areas.
And while they can be an excellent resource, using freelancers is a bit different than hiring an agency. Let’s take a look at both of these options to help you understand the differences between these resources so you can decide the best path for content marketing for your company.
Even the best writers can benefit from using a freelancer. Sometimes you can get so caught up in your own company that it’s easy to fall back on the same language, the same benefits and the same ideas. Providing a freelancer with a topic and some background information and letting them run with it can breathe new life into a concept or sentiment.
While those within the company know best what your company does and how it’s different from the competition, having an outside source create your content can bring a fresh perspective to the material when you need to approach a topic you’ve written about many times before. A freelancer can make a once tired subject captivating, inspiring and encourage your audience to want to know more. And, a freelancer can turn company jargon into terms everyone can understand.
Pro Tip: When providing a freelancer with the content information, be sure they understand the tone of your company’s writing. Provide examples of other content your company has created.
In terms of cost, a freelancer typically charges per project, and can give you pricing based on the length of the content. Because it’s project-based, it tends to be less expensive to hire freelancers for their services, but be prepared to spend time prepping your freelancer on the topic and reviewing their finished work to ensure the messaging is what you want for your brand.
A marketing agency is composed of not only writers but web developers, graphic designers, multimedia producers, social media specialists and more. This team of experts can become an extension of your marketing department. Together, your company’s in-house team can collaborate on building a strategy for achieving your company’s overall goals.
By hiring an agency, you will have writers who are equipped with tools to boost your SEO efforts, and they can bring an educated strategy to your company’s content marketing efforts. When you hire an agency, you get more than just skilled writing, you get access to marketing tools and platforms that can take your marketing efforts to another level of sophistication that will put you ahead of your competition.
Working with an agency is a collaborative effort between the agency and the company. Rather than dictating topics one by one to a writer, you will work alongside your digital marketing agency to determine a strategy and all the content pieces that will fit within that strategy. This could include email marketing, paid advertising, social media advertising, blogging, website pages and more. The agency will work to understand your industry, products and services and who your target audience is to recommend the best possible strategies and tools for marketing.
Once the agency has the groundwork they need to begin, they can handle the daily marketing tasks and provide regular updates and reporting to the in-house team or contact at the company, and together everyone can make decisions on what to do next once they’ve reviewed and discussed the data.
Because of everything that comes with working with an agency, you can expect the cost to be more than a freelancer. But the age-old saying is true: you get what you pay for. When considering these costs, think about how much your company needs in terms of marketing, and how much time in-house team members are able to devote to these efforts.
Like everything else, there are pros and cons to each option, and it all comes down to your company’s marketing needs, budget and how much bandwidth your in-house team has. With a full in-house marketing team, your company could benefit from just a freelancer periodically providing content so your team can focus on the big picture. When there are fewer marketers with tight schedules, it could help to bring in an agency skilled in digital marketing strategies that can handle regular efforts and come with ideas and tools to improve your overall strategy.