Digital marketing is exploding like a mint in a Coke bottle, and big corporations are jumping on the wagon. This goes hand-in-hand with the growing desire for an in-house marketing team. Why not? When digital marketing becomes an important aspect of your business, you’ll want to have complete control.
Major companies have been focusing on this for some time now. Nike, for example, decided in 2013 to take its entire social media efforts in-house, and Procter & Gamble is already doing 30% of their ‘media’ buying themselves.
Alright, nothing left to say then. Put every contract you have with an agency through the shredder!
Agencies are dead!
Actually, the reality is not as clear-cut. Starting an in-house digital marketing team doesn’t happen with the flick of a switch. It’s a whole process. Depending on the digital maturity of your business, agencies play a different role.
Long live agencies! Huzzah!!!
Take me to digital wonderland
Wherever you go, there’s always a company at the start of its digital marketing adventure. If it wants to grow, then it’s best to dip the feet into the world of digital marketing. Fortunately, these companies don’t have to do this by themselves. Many specialized agencies guide them during their first steps in digital wonderland.
The ‘hands-on agency‘ is the perfect partner for companies starting with digital marketing. As an ‘initiator’ they use proven marketing methods and immediately create digital for your business. In return for your fee, you get digital proof of concept without high upfront costs. Ideal for getting used to your new digital activities.
Leaving digital puberty
What about companies that have been using digital marketing for some time? But where digital is not yet a ‘core competency’? Do they still need an agency in the future?
Of course, they do. The thing is, these companies do not yet see how digital marketing adds value. They do not yet see it as a driver of bottom-line results. It is merely a supplier of clicks, views, impressions, and other superficial KPIs.
As if the gates of heaven opened, the ‘compound agency’ appears. They take on the role of ‘educator’ to help companies achieve a mindset where marketing is inseparable from all other business aspects. The compound agency helps you build your digital marketing into a ‘core competency’: a mindset that greatly impacts the success or failure of your business.
What if you are digitally mature
What about companies that do view digital as a driver of success? Their digital marketing is running smoothly. Do these companies still need a marketing agency? You would think not. But what if profits suddenly stagnate or tunnel vision sets in so that you no longer see the bigger picture?
These companies continue to rely on agencies. But be aware: they are less likely to choose operational agencies (compound & hands-on). That’s because they perfectly take on the operational side of digital themselves. Companies with a higher digital maturity instead work together with the ‘conceptual agency’. This agency takes on the role of ‘challenger’. They offer an extra pair of eyes that closely examines your online marketing strategy & related business processes (customer care, logistics, sales, etc.).