When a housebuilder decides it needs some marketing support, it often considers two options; hire an agency or employ a marketing superhero. We come across this situation quite a lot. The business is torn between finding a team it can work with or bringing in a person to join the existing team and solely support that business. Of course, there are advantages to both options, but it is a decision that needs careful consideration.

A fresh perspective

The most obvious benefit of an in-house staff member is that you have their undivided attention. However, that also means that they’re not learning from any other experiences. Often, the reason a business decided to get marketing support is for an outside, third-party perspective, however, this effect will quickly be lost once the team member is ‘on-boarded’ properly; they become another member of the team who is only focussed on your business from your perspective.

Experience and knowledge

Unless you’re hiring a seasoned professional with many years of experience under their belt with salary expectations to match, chances are you’re taking on a relatively junior marketeer. For you £30 – £40,000 you might get a reasonable strategist, an ideas-driven creative or an enthusiastic spokesperson. You’ll probably need to also hire an agency to deliver high quality creative, to write a strategy or deliver a marketing initiative. Your £30 – £40,000 might have gone further to deliver all of this, and more, by working with an agency. Plus, you’ll have received the combined input of an entire team, rather than one individual.

The input of an entire team, not just an individual

Working with an agency gives you access to a wide range of skillsets from a team that work together effectively and efficiently. A creative team will have considered the strategy, design and messaging all in one and delivered it as a well-considered package (if your agency doesn’t do this you know where to come!). At every stage, the ideas should have been critiqued and evaluated, resulting in a fine-tuned concept.

The best advice

Rarely will you employ someone who has the depth of knowledge to support your business, within one role. Even more so in the housebuilding sector. Those with the right experience and successes under their belt, progress to senior roles or move into an agency, like at Antler! Our leadership team has extensive experience to help support your decision making, not just deliver on design or copy.

Challenge your thinking

An agency is more likely to challenge your current thinking. It is very difficult for an employee, let alone a new starter, to challenge the thinking of an entire business. Chances are, they’ll be keen to please which may mean going along with decisions and processes so as not to upset the management. Although an agency is keen to please, they are more likely to challenge a decision or thinking when they don’t believe it is in your best interest.

Which is best?

We are clearly biased, but for us, the benefits of working with an agency far outweigh those of hiring in an individual, if you want a strategic approach. If you’re looking to acquire a single skill-set, perhaps a designer or a copywriter, then go for the individual. If you’re looking to improve what you do and get support and advice that will change your business, then always go with an agency. Go with Antler!

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