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Written by The Mezzanine Group
on January 14, 2013

Deciding whether to develop an in-house marketing team or to outsource marketing can be a tough decision, especially for business-to-business (B2B) companies with less than $20M in revenue. Take this quiz to help evaluate which option might be best for you. 

Outsource or in-house marketing quiz 2

What's the Best Way to Do Marketing? 

For B2B companies who are getting serious about marketing, there's often a question of which way to go - hire a marketer on staff, or outsource. 

Just like IT for small and mid-sized companies, outsourcing is a viable and often smart way to get good marketing at a reasonable price. 

But outsourcing marketing isn't the right choice for every company.  

Which option is right for you? Take this quiz to help evaluate and compare the two options. 

THE QUIZ

Answer these 9 questions to help evaluate some of the pros and cons of in-house vs outsourced marketing:
 

1. Is marketing a core competence of the company?  

Y  /  N

2. Is there enough marketing work to keep a full-time senior staff member (strategic), and a junior staff member (operational) busy?

Y  /  N

3. Do you know which types of marketing will work well for the business, and therefore which skills to hire for in a marketer?

Y  /  N

4. Is the volume of marketing activity consistent over the course of the year, rather than having highs and lows based on season or quarter?    

Y  /  N

5. Have you had effective marketing in-house in the past?

 

Y  /  N

6. Do you have capacity on the leadership team to manage and direct a junior staff marketer and ensure that marketing is performing well?

Y  /  N

7. Is it easy for your leadership team to agree on what marketing should be done, given their relative knowledge about marketing?

Y  /  N

8. Do you have a culture that would be negatively affected by outsourcing marketing?

Y  /  N

9. Will it be difficult to find an outsourced marketing company  that has more marketing expertise than you have internally?

Y  /  N

 

 

THE SCORECARD

If you answered 'Yes' to 6 or more questions:

Marketing should be an in-house function for your business. You have the internal expertise, resources and demand to accomplish effective marketing. 

If you answered 'No' to 6 or more:

Outsourcing will probably work better in the short-term (12 - 24 months).
Rather than starting from ground-zero on your marketing journey, rent the expertise to get your company's marketing on track and grow your company's knowledge of marketing.  After you've done that (it typically takes 12 - 18 months), then you should re-evaluate whether in-house or outsourced marketing makes the most sense for the business. 

 If you fall somewhere in the middle

If you've tried in-house marketing in the past (or currently) and it isn't working, consider outsourcing. See the comments above about renting marketing expertise in the short-term until your company's marketing is established. When you're looking for an outsourced marketing company, look for those that have a track-record, processes you can work with, and a style you like. 

 

Additional Reading:  Why Some B2B Companies Outsource Their Marketing 

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