By Caroline Graham

Whether you’re a small or mid-sized business or a large corporate organization, you and your employees are most likely being stretched thin as you’re tasked to create and optimize a successful marketing strategy. You know you could designate someone to manage the company’s social platforms and publish blog posts, but do they also have the training and the time to plan, execute, and consistently maintain an effective marketing campaign?

Similar to how you would contract an accounting company for your bookkeeping and a law firm for legal matters, you should consider hiring a specialized agency for your inbound marketing.

Inbound marketing is a strategy that utilizes many methods of marketing to create brand awareness and attract new business. These methods include, but are not limited to:

However, inbound marketing can be daunting to plan, develop, and maintain without some outside help. Creating a tailored email campaign while keeping your Marketo database clean and tidy can be—and sometimes is—a full-time job. Adding one more piece to the puzzle may actually require adding a dedicated team that can help you achieve your inbound marketing goals. In fact, the decision to hire an inbound marketing team may be easier than you think.

The first action any decent inbound marketing agency takes is to develop a comprehensive strategy based on research about your company, including competitors, industry, buyer personas, and market share. At SmartBug Media®, we get to know you, your strengths, weaknesses, and arguably the most important, your goals. We take the time to analyze your Marketo instance while providing specific inbound marketing recommendations that will add value and momentum to your current processes. This ensures that all aspects of every campaign will be on point with your prospective customers. 

Learn how SmartBug generated a 6,800% increase in email marketing traffic using  Marketo and inbound marketing tactics.

Armed with thorough research, a detailed plan in hand, and years of experience executing campaigns aligned with inbound marketing methodologies, we custom tailor your content to target the right leads at the right time and turn them into your customers.

Here are six things an inbound marketing agency can do for you as a Marketo customer:

1. Help create buyer personas (if you are still in the beginning phase) or help curate content for your personas

The right offer at the right time is sure to lead your visitors down the path to becoming paying customers.

2. Third-party software integrations

We know exactly how many integrations exist within LaunchPoint and have experience with integrating the most basic, out-of-the-box programs to those that require advanced setup.

3. Website, market, and competitor analysis

With more companies entering the Marketo ecosystem every day, it’s critical to know where your company ranks among your competitors and exactly what you need to do in order to improve your market share.

4. Email marketing and lead nurturing campaign development

You paid a pretty penny for your shiny marketing automation software. It’s time you make sure you are utilizing the advanced functionalities of Marketo’s email and engagement programs that help you convert leads into customers.

5. Campaign analytics and comprehensive data reports to find new opportunities

Be amazed by the exact numbers showing return on investment and determine which campaigns, if any, need improvements.

6. Always implementing the forefront inbound marketing methodologies

With ever-evolving technology, you might not have time to stay up to date on the latest and greatest, but an inbound marketing agency will.

As Marketo states:

It takes a great deal of time, patience, and creativity to attract, hire, and grow the right team of marketers.

Even though a lot of people can write content and design graphics, there are few that both understand inbound marketing and also have the expertise to effectively implement the methodologies, resulting in wildly successful inbound marketing campaigns.  

If you have someone in-house who can put together an interesting e-book, design a compelling call to action, or generate a successful automated email campaign, do you also have the time and money to train them in the best practices of inbound marketing? 

Not only does an agency offer you sound strategy and skillful execution of your inbound marketing, but it also already has a team of exceptional talent assembled to work—from first-rate content writers, creative graphic designers, and tech-savvy developers, to astute marketing consultants and rockstar project managers. And all team members are experienced in proven inbound marketing methodologies.  

When you hire an inbound marketing agency, you can be up and running in less time than it takes for you to find the right team and train them.

Hiring an agency may not be the answer for every company, but neither is launching ineffective landing pages, publishing subpar e-books, or allowing your blog to fall by the wayside because your team is more focused on putting out fires or troubleshooting email deliverability issues. Marketo is an awesome, albeit complex, automation software with capabilities that you may not know exist—but we do.

Bottom line: Hire an inbound marketing agency because agencies bring Marketo customers real results—increased revenue.

The decision to hire an inbound marketing agency may be the best decision you can make for you, your team, and ultimately, your organization. Not to mention, we’re pretty fun to work with.

This blog was originally published in May 2014 and has been updated since. 

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Caroline Graham

About the author

Caroline Graham is a Marketing Automation Specialist based in Indianapolis. She is a Marketo Certified Expert focused on understanding how the digital age impacts consumer behaviors. Read more articles by Caroline Graham.

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