Running a successful business in today’s competitive marketplace is a significant endeavor. If you’re a small business trying to compete with larger organizations, the challenges are even greater.  The good news? There are some things you can do to position your small business for success — starting with hiring a marketing agency.

While larger businesses may have more money, this doesn’t necessarily correlate to more successful promotions. At the same time, this doesn’t mean your small business should go it alone — especially if handling your own marketing distracts you from doing what you do best. That’s where small business marketing companies come in.

Small business marketing agencies have the knowledge, skills, and experience to devise, implement, monitor, measure, and maximize your digital marketing efforts. Do any of these questions sound familiar to you?

  • How do I stand out in a digital market saturated with other small businesses?
  • How do I reach my target customers?
  • How do I get qualified leads that result in sales?
  • How do I build my online presence while also running my business?
  • Why is a digital marketing agency a good idea?
  • What are the options available to market my business online?
  • How do I establish and grow my brand?
  • Is my website working as efficiently as it could?

If so, a small business marketing agency may be the solution you’re looking for. Read on for a roundup of eight benefits of hiring a digital marketing agency for small businesses:

  • Improving your visibility
  • Building your brand and brand presence
  • Getting more leads
  • Giving you access to expertise
  • Broadening your perspectives
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Measurable and actionable outcomes — faster
  • Partnership in your business success

First, we’ll take a closer look at each of them. Then, we’ll move on to when the time is right for making the power move of hiring a marketing agency.

8 Reasons to Hire a Small Business Marketing Agency

Still not convinced that you can afford to outsource your small business marketing? The truth is that you can’t afford NOT to.  Here’s a roundup of eight proven benefits of hiring a marketing agency to help your small business reach its goals.

1. You’ll improve your visibility.

According to small business marketing statistics shared by Fundera, 20 percent of small businesses don’t use digital marketing at all. This means no SEO, email marketing, or social media. None of it. They don’t even have websites.

We get it. Small businesses are juggling many things today, and dedicated time for focusing on strategizing and managing a marketing plan may not be at the top of your to-do list.

Here are two more Fundera facts that point to the overwhelming importance of digital marketing for visibility:

  • More than 90 percent of customers have visited a physical store because of an online experience.
  • Just under 90 percent of marketers report that they’ve increased their business’s visibility through social media marketing.

Regardless of the reasons you’re not online, the takeaway is clear: If your small business is in the group NOT using digital marketing, you’re missing out on a major opportunity to get in front of your target customers.

And if you’re not in front of them, guess who is? Your competitors.

You'll improve your visibility: a woman holding a magnifying glass to her right eye

2. You’ll build your brand.

Digital marketing isn’t just about increasing your exposure. It’s also about doing it in a way that connects your target customers to your brand.

The benefits of this are wide-ranging, including the following:

  • Your business, products, and services will be more recognizable.
  • The more recognizable you are, the more consumers will trust you.
  • Your customers will understand who you are, what you do, and why you do it.
  • They’ll also know what to expect from you.
  • Your relationships and connections with your customers will grow — improving trust and loyalty in the process.
  • You’ll set yourself apart from your competitors.

3. You’ll get more leads.

Leads are potential future clients. As such, they’re a must-have for any business. The more leads you have in your pipeline, the more conversions you’ll get.

Several digital marketing strategies can help you amp up your lead generation. These include creating a content plan and using it to establish thought leadership, build relationships, and boost SEO; geo-targeting; segmented email marketing; and leveraging the power of paid social advertising on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

According to HubSpot’s “Not Another State of Marketing Report,” the top priority for marketers is converting leads into customers.

4. You’ll gain experience — and expertise.

Why learn on your dime when you can go straight to the experts? Marketing agencies hire people with proven expertise in marketing across a range of areas. This includes specialization in small business marketing as well as in a variety of industries.

Sure, you can hire an in-house marketer or cobble together a team of your own. You may even be able to do this at a cheaper upfront cost. However, you simply won’t have access to the same high-level marketing you’d get with a full-service small business marketing agency.

Small business marketing companies use a balance of inbound and outbound digital marketing tactics to attract your target customers and create small business growth. This can be tricky to achieve without agency expertise and resources.

When you hire a marketing agency, you’re not just getting people, you’re also getting years of experience and knowledge regarding what your company needs to do to get ahead. And don’t forget that marketing is anything but one-size-fits-all. Rather than throwing everything at the wall and seeing what sticks, an agency knows what strategies will work best for your business and brand.

Here are just a few of the “one-stop shop” advantages a marketing agency offers your small business:

  • Branding and your USP (unique selling proposition)
  • Fresh and impactful content creation for your website, product pages, blogs, social media, and more
  • Advertising
  • Email marketing, re-targeted ads, and other lead-nurturing tactics
  • Knowledge of evolving SEO algorithms
  • Access to the latest tools and technology
  • The development and deployment of short- and long-term strategies
  • Analytics for all vital metrics
  • Scaling strategies for optimal growth

All the while, you’ll be freeing yourself and your team members to focus on doing what you do best: running your business.

an excited boy standing in front of a green background with his right hand raised as if suggesting an idea

5. You’ll get new perspectives.

As a small business owner, you’ve got a lot on your mind. You may not have the time or resources for keeping up with the latest industry trends or thinking outside the box with your marketing strategies. These activities, however, are the bread and butter of marketing agencies.

Marketing is always changing and evolving. If you’ve been sticking with the status quo, your efforts are likely falling far short of their potential. An agency will offer a fresh set of eyes, and a new viewpoint on the best ways to promote your business.

It’s also important to account for business growth and executing campaigns to scale. What worked for you in the past may not work for you now. You may not even know that this is happening, or why. A small business marketing agency will offer the intelligence you need to assess your marketing plan, analyze its strengths and weaknesses, and take corrective action.

While these insights are based on experience, they’re also based on something else: data. Marketing agencies translate data into measurable marketing strategies. These data-driven insights can spur lead conversions by supporting more informed decision-making.

6. It’s surprisingly cost-effective.

When you hire a small business marketing agency, you don’t get a single person. You are given a team of experts comprising everyone from data analysts and copywriters to social media managers and SEO specialists. To get all of these talents in-house, you’d need an exceptional (and expensive!) marketer or multiple people.

Whether it be optimizing your website, harnessing the full power of social media, setting up and claiming your business online, using Google AdWords, or creating local awareness and customer trust, a marketing agency will do all of this and more — with expertise that you simply won’t get from a single employee.

Even if you could find the perfect single person to handle all of these tasks, hiring and retaining employees is an expensive process. Not only are you adding a new salary to the payroll, you’re also paying for other benefits. And there’s always a risk that that person will leave, thereby rendering the money you’ve spent meaningless.

So while outsourcing to a small business marketing agency may seem expensive, it actually pays for itself in the form of the consistent and specialized knowledge and results you get in return — especially when you factor in the steep learning curve associated with the field of marketing.

Another way to look at it? You don’t ask one of your salespeople to do your business’s taxes, or have your administrative assistant draft your legal contracts. You hire professionals — the same goes for marketing.

And remember: As with most things in life, you get what you pay for. While sticking within your budget is important, finding a marketing agency that will do everything you want and need it to do is a worthwhile use of funds. Plus, many agencies offer flexible pricing structures that can allow you to get the help you need without blowing through your budget.

Ultimately, marketing should not be an afterthought; it’s a full-time job. Hiring a marketing agency will save you the time of trying to do things yourself. Trained professionals will also do it better, while liberating you to dedicate your effort and resources on more immediate concerns within your actual area of specialization.

It's surprisingly cost-effective: a pink piggy bank with eyeglasses and funny expression facing rubberband-rolled bills

7. You’ll get measurable and actionable outcomes.

As a small business owner, you’re comfortable with some degree of risk. However, when it comes to maximizing your marketing spend, minimizing risk is the imperative. Marketing agencies can help you avoid risk whenever possible by proving their value through metrics and analytics.

At the end of the day, there’s no guarantee when it comes to results. However, small business marketing agencies offer the next best thing: demonstrating value by providing metrics and case studies from other small businesses with whom they’ve worked.

Key marketing metrics used by digital marketing agencies include:

  • Cost per acquisition (CPA)
  • Cost per lead (CPL)
  • Customer lifetime value (CLV)
  • Click-through rate (CTR)
  • Bounce rate
  • Goal completions
  • Lead-to-customer conversion rate
  • Multi-touch attribution
  • Engaged time
  • Quality of inbound links
  • Social media engagement
  • Unengaged subscribers
  • Website conversion rate
  • MQL to SQL ratio

As a small business owner, some of these terms may be familiar to you. Others may be foreign. A small business marketing agency knows exactly what each of these means, and how to translate this meaning into results.

Not only will tracking these vital metrics help you reach your goals, it will also help you reach them faster. Because while there’s always some degree of trial and error involved with marketing, measuring your efforts is the best way to determine what’s working along with immediate intervention points to help you take swift course-correction action.

8. Your success is their success.

Your small business ROI will increase when you work with a marketing agency. While this matters to you, of course, it also matters to the marketing agency. After all, their business success hinges on satisfied clients.

Another way to look at it? Many marketing agencies are also small businesses. They understand your struggles and your opportunities. They want to help you succeed so they can succeed, too. And they have no other purpose other than to help your small business reach its goals.

Because of this, marketing your business will be their top priority. Can you say the same?

When Should You Hire a Small Business Marketing Agency?

Now that we’ve established the many ways in which your small business can benefit from hiring a marketing agency, we’ll address when is the right time to take this pivotal step.

Here are a few times when a marketing agency can be especially beneficial to your small business:

When you’re just starting to explore new marketing channels

Perhaps you’ve never done any social media marketing before. Or maybe you’ve never used SEO. Regardless of the specifics of the situation, it makes much more sense to work with an experienced agency as opposed to attempting to go it alone.

Without access to the right information, you can’t know whether you’re headed in the best direction. A marketing agency can help you make the most of your efforts at this critical juncture.

When you need help executing a specific marketing strategy

So you’re rolling out a new marketing strategy but need more minds and hands to execute it. Rather than pulling from your current staff or hiring new staff members to undertake this work, an agency can offer the human capital you need — along with insights into the best ways to move forward.

When you have specific goals

A marketing agency can help steer you in the right direction in the early discovery phase of your marketing plan. However, marketing agency value doesn’t end there. In fact, it amplifies.

Once you’ve zeroed in more closely on your goals, a marketing agency can help you define your goals and how to achieve them. A well-planned and executed marketing strategy is a means to an (optimal) end.

An illustration written on a gray chalkboard that reads "Dream Big - Set Goals - Take Action"

When your small business growth is sluggish

Without the right marketing strategy in place, your business growth will be limited at best. A marketing agency will evaluate what you’re doing now — and what else you can be doing to move forward. Marketing professionals will use their strength and knowledge so you can use yours.

When you don’t have adequate time, resources, or manpower

Even if you’ve already landed on a marketing plan that will help you optimize ROI for your small business, implementing and managing it is another story.

An agency can attend to all of this and will completely take ownership of keeping your marketing plan up and running. From establishing a consistent social media calendar to online reputation management, they’ll do it all — with laser focus.

Of course, all marketing agencies aren’t created equal. Which begs the question for small businesses looking for marketing: How do you choose the right one?  It starts with matching what you want and need with what they’re offering.

Digital marketing offers huge payoffs, but they’re not easy or guaranteed. Furthermore, the more you put into your marketing efforts, the more you get out of them. If your small business doesn’t have the resources to design, implement, and sustain a comprehensive digital marketing strategy, you will not reap the full benefits of digital marketing.

And while outsourcing to a small business marketing agency is a big step, it’s also a big step in the direction of reaching your audience — and your goals.

The Light Digital has successfully increased followers, engagement and revenue for many small businesses with their comprehensive approach to digital marketing strategies. Are you ready to take the next step? Reach out to our team today.