Engaging with a digital agency - When is the right time?

Jason Gotto
on
Tagged in: Branding, Design, Mobile, SEO, Software & Technology, Usability & UX
9 minutes reading time
  • Whether it's navigating the world of SEO or building and maintaining your company's website, you can grow accustom to doing everything yourself. You know your business and customers better than anyone else and understand the market like no other.

    So it makes sense to spend your days handling everything online that is related to your business.

    Until it doesn’t make sense anymore. Until when continuing to handle ALL of your digital starts to hurt, not help, your business.

    Companies today realise their digital presence can no longer be neglected. In fact, for many, it is the most important facet of their organisation’s outward appearance given it may be the first (and only) point of contact with potential customers.

    So as you begin 2014, you may be wondering if now might be the right time to finally hire a digital agency. But, are you ready? Is now the right time?

    Below are some of the most common signs it might be time to partner with a digital agency.

    You’re lacking resources and/or skillsets in-house

    There’s something to be said for rolling up your sleeves, taking on a new task or project, and then making yourself its master. Passion projects always tend to fall into this category - they are labours of love you don’t want to let go.

    There are occasions when spending too much time on one thing, particularly something outside of your expertise, results in you ignoring everything else you have to do - ultimately hurting your attempts at moving forward.

    But there are also occasions when spending too much time on one thing, particularly something outside of your expertise, results in you ignoring everything else you have to do - ultimately hurting your attempts at moving forward. In these cases, handing the project over to someone else would not only get the project done faster, but executed significantly better.

    Cost

    Believe it or not, there are many times when working with an agency will be far cheaper than trying to do everything in-house. Consider the tremendous amount of thought, research and time that goes into the development of a new website, or the execution of a search marketing strategy.

    When you hire out you get the immediate benefit of that agency’s experience, tools and relationships - not to mention their time - all the things you need right now. It also saves you the salary of hiring someone and the time you need to train them.

    By working with an agency you can rent their experience, while growing your own team.

    You’re perpetually overextended

    There’s a difference between having a busy week and being spread so thin it’s impossible to ever get anything done. What’s the difference? Well, the former eventually ends - you catch up, projects launch, you begin to go back to your procrastinating ways (probably why you got busy in the first place), and you rejoice at the bar Friday afternoon.

  • Did you set goals for yourself and for you company this time last year? Check the calendar, because it is now 12 months later and if you’re not any closer to achieving those goals, it may be time to ask yourself why.

    On the other hand, when you're overextended, these things don’t happen. Rather, you are continually in a state of ‘overwhelm’, with one thing piling on top of another. Friday comes and instead of going to the bar, you want to sleep (or you’re still working).

    And it’s your business that suffers, unable to ever move forward because you’re standing still deciding which of your many hats to wear.

    Did you set goals for yourself and your company this time last year? Check the calendar, because it is now 12 months later and if you’re not any closer to achieving those goals, it may be time to ask yourself why. And get help.

    You want to focus on your core business

    You’re a small not-for-profit with a great idea for an app to help thousands of children, but it doesn't currently exist. You're a sales company that knows how to sell, but don’t have the proper tools and systems in place to manage your leads, contacts and sales cycle effectively. Or you’re retail outlet that has a great idea for a web service that needs to exist, but doesn’t currently.

    You don’t want to stop to create these ideas, nor market them for that matter. You want to focus on building and developing your core product or service. So do that. But partner with someone to help you with the other stuff. Don’t just ignore it.

    The complexity of today’s digital world means knowing when to ask for help and what kind of help you need. Maybe it’s a strategy to help your business navigate the world of SEO smarter. Maybe it’s help building and maintaining your website because you don't have the resources or staffing to do so. Maybe it’s the development of software so your business runs the way you have always wanted it to.

    The point is, there comes a time for many organisations when it’s best to consult an outside digital agency for strategy, implementation or even to hand off entire parts of a project or business. By not doing anything, you could be actually doing a disservice to your company.

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