Saturday, April 20, 2024

Can’t Afford A Marketing Specialist ? Here Are The Alternatives


As the name suggests, a marketing specialist is the person involved with the tasks of formulating marketing campaigns, developing sales presentations, analysing data and creating brand messages to improve brand awareness and increase sales.
Depending on the particular area of marketing specialized on, or the industry, it is common to find the marketing specialist referred to by other names such as Social media marketer, Email marketer, Copywriter and Content marketer.

The essence of every business is sales, irrespective of the nomenclature utilized, lead generation, customer growth, or revenue growth, they are all ultimately geared to attaining or surpassing your sales target. There is no doubt that a proper mix of all four Ps ( Product, place, Promotion and Price) of marketing strategy is necessary to achieve the company’s performance target. However it is the work the marketing specialist does in the area of Promotion that brings the desired performance target. Promotion is the special purpose vehicle through which the other “Ps” are delivered to the prospective buyers. Without promotion the companies intended clients may never know that the goods and services they earnestly desire is available next door. This special purpose vehicle needs to be frequently and regularly renewed in form of repackaging, rebranding, sensitisation, and performance evaluations in order to ensure that the organisation’s products are always in front of prospective buyers and competitively appealing.

Hiring cost is highly subjective and will vary widely from one geographical area to another.
This would range between two to five thousand dollars (2000 – 5000 USD) in the United States of America depending on the level of experience. Bear in mind that the closer you are to the 2000 USD per month entry level salary the less experienced personnel you get to hire.
For even a budget as low as 24,000 per annum most businesses still find it difficult to afford an in-house marketing specialist. Random sampling conducted on small and medium enterprises has shown that affordability rather than necessity is the reason why they shy away from engaging the services of a marketing specialist. This in conjunction with the understanding that unlike production staff, an increase or reduction in marketing staff is not directly proportional to growth in sales revenue. As such the reluctance in making robust allowance in the marketing budget.

The question becomes, when faced with low budgets what alternatives exist for businesses since there is a general consensus as to the relevance of a marketing specialist in the day to day operations? Here are some of the options that have been tested to yield effective results.

1. Marketing Agency

Outsourcing marketing services is an age long practice in most sectors. This has always been the go to option for organisations without the massive budget to grow their own in-house marketing team but with a sizeable budget to retain the services of a reputable agency. It comes with its pros and con, with a major con being that your company secret are no longer secret. An agency has all types and levels of marketing professionals there by cutting the time for organisations that need to start a campaign immediately and also avoid the challenges of hiring errors.

2. Marketing as a Service (MaaS)

This is a modern alternative to the marketing agency being driven by the ever evolving information technology. It could best be described as the online version of the brick and mortar marketing agency. It is more automation driven and less human interface when compared to the marketing agency. This is a plus as the risk of losing vital trade secret to your competitors is reduced. However data security must be constantly evaluated and upgraded.
Since most resources have been assigned online and shared with other businesses its cost is far more cheaper than retaining a marketing agency.

3. Remote Marketing Specialist

A major advantage of the COVID 19 pandemic is the discovery that a lot of the personnel services that businesses require can be offered from a location far from that of the business. So if deploying MaaS is too IT-intensive for your understanding, then just hiring a remote staff as your marketing specialist might be the best option. We have seen many cases of very experienced personnel being recruited for entry level wage. This has been found to be more cost effective as organisations keep fine tuning and improving on conferencing and remote working tools.

So, in summary, there are professional alternatives to recruiting experienced marketing specialist. The inability to find an experienced-hire within budget is not an excuse to run your organisation without the daily input of a marketing specialist.
Also bear in mind that starting with a particular alternative doesn’t mean you can’t transition to another in the future. So if what you can afford currently is a freelance marketing specialist working remotely, start with it and transition to Maas when your organisation’s cumulative computer competency permits or to a marketing agency if that’s your choice. Then you can eventually settle for your in-house marketing team builtĀ overĀ time.

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