If you’re like many creative people, marketing is the last thing you want to spend time on. Paid gigs, shooting or designing personal work, editing images, doing taxes, and other business tasks usually seem a lot more urgent.
The trouble is if you don’t do marketing — especially when you’re busy — you’ll eventually have far too much time for marketing. That’s because you won’t have any work.
Luckily, you don’t have to do it all yourself. There are many great reasons to outsource marketing tasks to someone who lives and breathes in that world. Here are five of the biggest:
Marketing any small business the right way takes time, which many solo professionals don’t have. There’s no reason to overload yourself, especially if it’s more efficient and cost-effective to put an outsider on the job.
Some creative pros take a DIY approach to marketing to save money without calculating the opportunity cost—the time it takes away from paying gigs or other tasks that only you can do. When weighing the cost of outsourcing, don’t just look at the rate your marketing partner will charge. Ask yourself what you could do with the time you’ll save. If you can earn more in that time than you’ll pay for marketing help, you’ve got “return on investment” built into the equation.
It’s easy to run a marketing plan when there’s not much else to do. But when you’ve got deadlines for clients who pay well, the last thing you want to do is take time away from that work to do your own self-promotion. Having someone else handle your marketing schedule keeps everything humming when you get busy, which helps you stay busy while you focus on what you do best.
A good marketing partner will bring several advantages to the table. For one, an outsider is more likely to think like your buyers and create material that speaks to their needs. They’ll help you define and refine the market you want to reach so that you have a more targeted sense of what you’re doing instead of just “blasting it out there” and hoping someone responds. Find a partner who’s familiar with your market and you’ll also get a window into what other people in the industry are doing—and what kind of approaches are getting them jobs.
Smart marketers track everything they do. They measure the results of each email or social media post, watch web traffic to learn how people find you, and test multiple approaches to learn what works for the audience you want to reach. They know where to find the data, and more important, how to interpret it so that you can focus future marketing efforts where they’ll achieve the best results.
Tom N. Tumbusch writes copy that creates action for creative agencies and green businesses. He publishes a free writing tips newsletter each month and periodically shares more casual wisdom on the WordStream of Consciousness Blog. His tiny solar-powered corner of the Internet can be found at wordstreamcopy.com.
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