In-House Vs. Outsourced Marketing: Which Drives Organizational Growth?

arrows showing organizational growthIt’s a tough dilemma for anyone in charge of marketing for their business: do you go with an in-house team or an outsourced agency for organizational growth? With potential leads for your business on the line and so many factors to consider, there’s no clear place to start thinking about which direction to go in.

The only point that’s universally true is that there are no hard and fast rules for which projects and services should be outsourced and which should be kept within the company. So as you consider who will carry out all of your company’s initiatives, think about these four aspects of managing marketing that will probably influence your final decision.

Time and Control

Consider what the best use of your time is to drive growth in your business and if marketing is a part of that for you.


With an in-house staff, it’s possible that you might spend more time managing them and ensuring that the work is being done in a timely manner.

However, the fact that you have staff right across the hall instead of across town means you’ll have more control over the process of completing your marketing objectives and the strategies they support. If you want to be hands on in the marketing process and think this is the best way you could encourage growth, hiring your own employees could be the way to go.


One big benefit of outsourcing to an agency is that you’ll spend much less time on your company’s marketing. All you’ll have to do is approve campaigns, content, and any other materials the agency produces, along with attending the occasional meeting. You’ll have time freed up to spend on other ways of growing your business.

The other side of this coin is that you give up some control. While you’ll have the final say on completed work and strategies, how that work is done will be out of your hands.


As with any aspect of business, the effect on the bottom line is important. Consider how you want to spend your money and the ROI you’re looking for.


Every employee you hire will need their own compensation package, which could include benefits like healthcare, vacation time, and continuing education along with salary. You also risk the possibility of an employee leaving at any time and spending even more money replacing them, which can impact your goals for expansion.


A marketing agency often allows you to pay what it would cost for one employee’s salary for a whole team of experts. It’s also possible to set budgets for one time projects instead of paying a group of contractors, which also saves you time and lends more stability to your marketing.


Decide what skillsets are most important for reaching your marketing goals, how many people you will need, and for how long to help you reach a decision on hiring employees or a company.


Hiring an in-house team requires finding just the right people for your company, culture, and needs. Most of the time they have a niche that they work best in. Think about the long-term strategy here and if you’ll need the same services years in the future as marketing changes and your business gets bigger. Bear in mind that whenever you discover that another kind of expert is needed, you’ll also need to go back to the hiring process.

The advantage here is that you’ll get to hand pick who carries out every aspect of your marketing.


An agency is a package deal. Whether an initial engagement includes work from every expert they have on staff, they’re all available in case your marketing needs change over time. Not only is the knowledge and experience already there, but so is a wide range of flexibility.

Deciding which route to take for your marketing comes down to how you want to spend time, the amount of money you’re willing to spend, and what skills you need to increase business. Choosing to hire an outsourced marketing agency, an in-house team, or taking an approach that includes both are all options that could be a fit depending on your business’ goals.