If you’re in a growing business, I’m sure that thought has crossed your mind.

Why outsource to a digital agency when you could have your own in-house web team ready to do your bidding?

Sounds pretty awesome. Let’s see.

Who’s on your Web Team?

When imagining this dream team, the first thing you probably thought of is the website. So, let’s break that down.

The Tech Guys

Your web designer creates the visual look and layout, while the web developer makes it all work. The developer makes sure everything functions on phones, tablets and computers, and programs features like contact forms.

Depending on the complexity of your website, different people may develop the customer-facing front end and the under-the-hood back end functionality. But, we’re going to pretend you’re a typical mid-sized company with straight-forward products.

The Creatives

A copy writer pens all the words that go on your website. This includes your main content pages, your blog or news feed, and the search engine optimization (SEO) content that helps you rank higher on Google.

Because you don’t want your visitors to go blind reading text, it’s a good idea to add pictures and video. That means a photographer and videographer — who are not the same person. Fingers crossed that the guy who shoots your video can also edit it.

A graphic designer creates graphics (duh). But, did you also know they edit photos, adding fancy text and illustrations for visual interest?

The Marketers

If you sell products online, you’ll want an online product manager gathering product information, scheduling photo-shoots, and making sure these details make it to the website.

With all these jobs, it’s a good idea to hire a digital creative director to manage them all.

So far, that’s 8 specialized web professionals just for the website. And if you want any eyeballs on it, you better add a social media coordinator, a Google Ads expert, and an email marketing content creator.

Make that 11.

Bulletproof your business from online reviews

How much do all those people cost?

Well, it’s a lot.

The 2018 salary report from Robert Half shows it the team above will cost between $775,000 and $945,000. Then you still have to factor in benefits, software, computers, campaign budgets, and etc.

Hiring this digital marketing team will cost you well over $1 million dollars per year.


How about a single digital marketing superhero?

Ok, let’s say you find a guy who can build websites, write compelling sales copy, take fabulous photos, and knows his way all around social media. Plus, he’s an absolute whiz at Google Ads and and all-around likable person.

A senior web developer earns an average of $117,000 per year.

Even with all those skills, there’s no guarantee he can do everything you need. And you still need money for software, equipment, and ad budgets.

Digital Marketing Superhero

How does that compare to a digital marketing agency?

You might think digital marketing agencies would be more expensive. After all, they have all the same people as your dream team (and often more!).

But, agencies divide these expenses among multiple clients, providing you the same level of service at a fraction of the cost.

In fact, our average client spends about $1,000 – $5,000 per month.

Mind-Blowing Websites

But, I want it all.

Ok. Let’s say you want a mind-blowing e-commerce website and tons of digital marketing extras. We had our guys spec out an extreme digital marketing plan with everything you see here.

  • Custom website design

  • Secure online purchases

  • 10 content pages

  • 50 products + photos

  • Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & LinkedIn

  • Weekly blog post

  • Local SEO on Google & Bing

  • Google & Facebook ads

  • Ongoing social media content

  • Monthly email marketing

  • Regular website updates

  • Online review monitoring

  • And our most expensive hosting option.

The total estimate came to about $56k*. For the whole year.

You’ve just outsourced all your digital marketing for half the cost of one employee.

*This estimate was in 2018 numbers. Don’t take it as a current price quote.

So, when should I hire in-house?

Outsourcing your digital marketing almost always saves you money. But, there are a few exceptions.

Enterprise-level companies with thousands of products or employees should keep it in-house. That type of initiative requires massive internal resources to maintain.

Tech startups where the website is married to the app can also benefit from an in-house staff. But, even those can save by outsourcing the web design, social media, and advertising.

The bottom line.

For small to mid-sized companies, outsourcing just makes sense. An agency partner can save you money, get things done quickly and provide a wealth of experience to help you avoid costly missteps.

Escape Plan Marketing would love to be your agency partner. Before you start hiring full-time web staff, give us a call.

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