As a business it’s hard to know how to get your digital marketing right. You may read a lot of digital marketing blogs but If you don’t have a strong enough understanding of marketing to be able to hire a marketer in house, you need to outsource your marketing to either an agency or a freelancer.
However this choice alone can be a tough one for businesses to process, as both options have distinct advantages and disadvantages. Let’s break them down by looking at a common marketing challenge for businesses, mastering PPC on Google Ads.
Choosing a PPC Agency
First of all, finding a specialist PPC agency can be quite difficult. There are a ton of marketing agencies out there who do everything from SEO, emails, branding and web design, but very few PPC specialists. But once you find one there are some advantages to working with a PPC agency.
An agency is a big entity, it’s highly unlikely that their account management and processes won’t be nailed down into a formal tried and tested process, particularly with a large agency. Agencies have staff whose sole job is to ensure that clients get great service. This could be an operations manager or a client services consultant. You’ll probably get a solid level of service from an agency because of this
Because of all of the overhead costs of running a large scale agency in terms of staff, office space, infrastructure legal teams, fiancé teams, what you’ll probably find is that an agency can seem quite expensive. All of those serve led roles within an agency come at a cost!
In addition, the processes and operational rigidity of an agency means they could pivot slower than a freelancer in terms of launching a new initiative that steps outside of the regular and set bounds of an agency.
Choosing a Freelancer
Compared with the task of choosing a PPC agency, choosing a PPC Freelancer is even harder. A freelancer is a one man band, so you as a business owner will often worry whether they have the skill, will or time to execute campaign for your business. However, let’s look at the advantages first.
PPC Freelancer Advantages
The advantages of a PPC freelancer is that they are likely to be a lot cheaper than an agency. As a one man band with no office and staff costs, the savings are often passed on to the client, so expect lower prices. Another advantage is that quite often, freelancers will be more willing to pivot and change how they work in order to accommodate your business. Because there is only 1 decision maker, the freelancer themselves, then it’s likely they will be more flexible to your business.
It’s also worth noting that smaller businesses will struggle to find an agency that will take them. If you’re a sole trader turning over 100k it’s likely that your marketing budget would be too small for an agency to consider.
But There Are Disadvantages
The disadvantages are that a freelancer is only 1 person, therefore you may not have confidence that they can take on the workload of you as a client, especially if you have a lot of requests. If you need a stable workflow with adhesion to deadlines, then it’s worth noting that a freelancer may not always be able to accommodate you.
Because a freelancer is often a sole trader, it means the risk of them going out of business or bust is high. A few missed payments and the freelancer may be in serious trouble, chasing invoices and trying to stay above water. This could be an issue for you and your business if you rely on them and build a strong relationship and all of a sudden they go bust.
As with many things, it depends. If you’re a tiny business with a small amount of turnover, then it’s worth going down the freelance route. However a large business should always go with an agency when they can.