If you are a small business, the following signs indicate that you should consider outsourcing at least some of your email marketing:
- You seem to be losing your strategic footing
- You are failing to generate sufficient leads
- Your content is not good enough to engage prospects
- You are not leveraging data to translate intent into impact
The underlying cause of all these is stress. First, you are a small business. Second, email marketing is complex. Unless you are a large team of dedicated pros, it can feel overwhelming to manage email campaigns. Besides, it’s not your only channel of marketing, albeit a very profitable one. As a business, you must be flailing your tentacles every which way.🙂
Maybe it’s time for you to consider outsourcing. But let’s explore it at some length.
1. Outsourcing Saves You Time
If you want to do email marketing right, it’s going to be time-consuming. According to one Litmus survey, 53% of email marketers say that it takes more than a fortnight to create a marketing email. Design, coding, and review take the most time.
Now, you are a small team. True, you are creating emails at a quicker rate than larger teams. However, it’s equally true that you are producing fewer emails at a time; maybe no more than four or five, if you are a three-person team. The bigger team is churning out at least 20 higher-quality emails at a given time.
If you outsource to a larger team than yours, you will be producing more emails and better emails. In the meantime, your team can attend to other pressing marketing needs in a more efficient way.
2. Outsourcing Costs Less
The typical email marketing team is made up of the copywriter, designer, developer, and marketer. Now, suppose you want to hire a team of email specialists. You will have to reckon with the “true employment cost” of each employee, which can be broken down in the following manner:
- Unemployment insurance
- Infrastructure costs
- Hardware and software costs
- Federal and state income taxes
- Medical insurance
- Fully paid vacation, sick leaves
- Retirement policies
When you outsource, you don’t need to bother with these additional costs. Now, remember that email marketing is one of the most cost-effective marketing tools. In fact, a majority of marketers spend no more than 20% of their marketing budget on email marketing.
With a cumbersome in-house team, you may end up allocating twice the amount of money for email marketing alone. Why would you do that? If you know how powerful email is compared to other costlier marketing channels, you should inevitably want to save.
3. Outsourcing Involves The Experts
Email marketing demands expertise. Period.
Don’t expect to luck into a stellar campaign now and then. Knowing just enough about email marketing is equivalent to knowing nothing about email marketing. If you really want to rake it in through email, you must engage full-fledged experts. Since hiring in-house experts is not an affordable solution, as we just saw, outsourcing is your best bet.
It’s not just about the money, though. If you are thinking long-term, you must bring in the pros.
Let’s say that you want your business to emerge as a fairly formidable brand within the next ten years. Branding requires, among other things, powerful storytelling. Email is a great way to build a story around your brand, engage your audience, and keep the narrative flowing.
Ah, but you are a small business. You don’t have the manpower to shoot above a couple of emails at a time. Do you expect to fashion a narrative in the space of two emails and also have it work wonders for you? We hope not!
4. Outsourcing for Seizing The Moment
The relationship between marketing and news media is a relatively new one. Earlier, marketing was predominantly inward-facing. In other words, you would build a campaign around your product, launch the campaign, and then wait for the results.
Today, however, marketing is outward- as well as inward-facing. Apart from premeditated campaigns, you might have to build instant campaigns around attention-grabbing events around the world. Yes, we’re talking about moment marketing. Let’s say that it is seasonal marketing scaled down to per-diem trends.
Without an email-only team of deep-dyed experts, you could not attend to daily, interesting stories across the globe, let alone turning them to your advantage. You are a small team. You don’t have the time to watch for trends and such on social media 24×7.
Even if you do come across a particularly juicy, trending newsbyte, converting it into a robust campaign on time without the support of a dedicated team is a Herculean task.
5. Outsourcing for Deliverability Management
Email deliverability management is complicated, to say the least. Let’s try and understand why.
To begin with, your email list is not evergreen. It starts decaying owing to a number of reasons. By the end of the year, your list contains a lot of disengaged users. These users will affect your engagement metrics, damaging your sender reputation.
Suppose you end up on a blocklist. Delisting is equally complicated. If not handled properly, you might throttle your chances at future requests and end up securing a permanent block.
Another problematic aspect is the seemingly whimsical nature of ESPs. There is no universal standard of legitimacy in email traffic. The standards vary from one service provider to the next.
To make things worse, ESPs don’t tell you their peculiar requirements. You can’t tell whether or not your email has met their standard until you find out that it has been routed to spam. Gradually, if too many emails land in the spam folder, your reputation will suffer a major blow. Repairing it is not easy, either.
Adapting to each service provider requires considerable industry knowledge. Take feedback loops, for instance. You need to find out if your ESP signs you for feedback loops automatically or if you must do it yourself. If it’s the latter case, it’s not simple. You need to apply for feedback loops. Now, there are many feedback loops. Which ones should you sign up for? Only an expert can help you answer that question.
Evidently, it is quite overwhelming to manage deliverability on your own. It’s not something you can avoid, either. Good deliverability is the prerequisite of sustainable email marketing.
6. Outsourcing Provides You with Insights
Email marketing is not only complex but dynamic. When you are engrossed in managing your campaigns for hours on end, it’s only natural that you lose track of what’s working and what isn’t. It may not always be the case. Yet, it often is.
One of the benefits of email marketing is that it is measurable. We now come into analytics territory. As a business doing email marketing, you want to know:
- Who your most engaged subscribers are
- Where your highest-quality subscribers are coming from
- How your subscribers interact with your emails
- What your email deliverability trends look like
- What your bounce reports look like
- How your email journeys can be improved
Performance monitoring is key. Yes, there are many advanced software solutions that can generate granular reports for you. However, translating data into impactful action is what makes the difference ultimately. A good third-party team will comprise skilled data interpreters who can suggest micro improvements and enable you to make data-driven decisions.
Identifying Your Email Marketing Needs
Which areas of email marketing should you consider outsourcing? It varies from business to business. You go where the cracks take you. Still, if you are not sure, here are some areas of email marketing that typically require time and aggressive expertise, encouraging outsourcing:
- Email design
- Email coding
- Conversion tracking
- Subscriber/contact list management
- Performance monitoring
Do you have more respect for email marketing now?😊 Evidently, you are dealing with a monster of a tool. Nothing in email comes easy. It demands constant monitoring and improvement.
Equally, bear in mind that resource optimization and strategizing are the two biggest challenges that marketers face. Outsourcing can take a lot off your shoulders, leaving you to focus on your core competencies.