Here is an interesting question. Do I need a digital agency? We hope in this article that we can help you find the answer and to perhaps better understand what a digital agency actually is. Let’s clear that up right away. A digital agency comprises usually of a team of marketing, writing, design, development and management experts with joint goal of delivering a better and professional web presence, which is a very broad field but can range from service and platform maintenance comprising of updates and upgrades, design suggestions, marketing campaign and feature development, fully coordinated project work from concept to launch, lead generation, metrics and insight, social media focused marketing, brand consultation or rebranding advice and implementation, content creation or guidance including article writing and video creation.
Some digital agencies will offer service contracts at a fixed fee which will allow for a certain amount of hours allocated per month for things like handling updates and upgrades, providing consultations, presenting solutions and incrementally adding features or modifying existing ones to a site or web app. Each agency will have its own principles and methods on the ways that they offer and provide services, but you can normally expect them to work along similar lines.
Couldn't I just do all of this stuff myself?
An excellent question! Sure you could? But why would you? For any large enterprise organization with a generous budget, they could expect to spend upwards of $60K+ per marketing, management, development, design expert depending on experience and demand. They would have to employ a management specialist of upwards of $100K to put together the team depending on the amount of resource and dedication required for the given scenario. Let’s say it was a large company with a very active web and marketing presence comprising of several sub-brands divisions regions. Maybe they even have an overseas presence requiring specific branding considerations. It’s not unreasonable to imagine a team of 10-20+ individuals working actively.
Some large organizations do have such teams an even rely on them, companies that essentially ARE the web, like Google, Facebook or Amazon, but the numbers of their employees far exceed the figure of 10-20+. Even for a smaller company, putting together a team of managers, designers, developers and marketing experts could cost upwards of $500K on a yearly basis, a great deal more than some people even spend on the building of their sites or apps. What about on days when nothing needs to be done? You’re still paying for your team, they would have to be working every day actively on something for you to get your ROI. If indeed they were able to guarantee your ROI, there are other aspects to consider such as training, raises, employees leaving or moving on, sick days, vacations, varying levels of skill...etc. These are all things to think about on a micro level.
On the other hand, if you’re a determined individual and perhaps a small or family business and willing to a lot some time into learning a new skill set and have a knack for the technology you may very well be able to build up a good social media or marketing presence. But all people are different, some people don’t know where to begin or don’t want to commit to the added responsibility and work. That’s the job of a digital agency.
So do I need a digital agency?
First, you need to ask yourself these questions. Are you interested in expanding your web presence and continually developing your web solution to stay ahead of the curve and competitors, to keep it up to date and relevant to prevent conversion rates from dwindling, and to be one of the top results in web searches? If the answer to that is yes, then you need to ask yourself this next question: Are you prepared and within budget, to put together your own team of professionals comprising of a manager, marketer, developer and designer, and if you can’t manage to provide all of these, are you content to take on board some of these roles yourself, or to have your employees work on multiple roles?
If the answer to the first question was yes, and the second question was also yes. Then you might be able to do without a digital agency, provided you are willing to spend a large portion of resources daily on your team, even if they are idle, if you are able to provide training or trust that they have the exact skills that they need, however, we would ask you to really think this through as we think the digital agency route could save you money in the future.
If the answer to the first question was yes but the second question was no. Then you really could benefit from a digital agency. By committing to a service and maintenance contract you could end up paying a small fee monthly (differing depending on the agency) in order to keep your site secure and up-to-date and to implement small changes (depending on your budget), you would have a complete team of experts at your disposal for a fixed fee for consultation and implementation without the need to worry about training the team, maintaining the team, taking them out for dinner and doing team building exercises, or paying for their vacation and sick days, or to worry about giving them a pay rise or having to let people go.
For a fixed fee, they are there when you want them and when you need them. Want to take a pause while you rethink your strategy, but you want to keep your site up to date and maintained? Get a small service agreement and the lowest rate to take care of that. Decide that you want to rebrand your site? Get in touch with the agency and get the ball rolling with a component project manager who will orchestrate everything for you behind the scenes while they break down your requirements and return to you with a solution. A lot of very large and capable organizations still prefer the digital agency route. Why? Because unless you need development and marketing around the clock, you can save yourself a lot of hassle and money in the long run if you keep it outsourced; that team is always there for you, you know the expected costs from the word go and you can continue doing what you do best, without having to become a digital agency yourself.
But I can’t afford a digital agency!
This can be true for a lot of people. But there are many agencies out there, each with their own prices and ways of doing things. As mentioned before, a digital agency is there so you don’t have to continually fork resources over to a team. Perhaps you just are looking for a small increase in numbers? Perhaps you just want help getting better search results? Perhaps you want to generate a little bit more leads or some consultation regarding the current look of your site. You don’t need to do everything at once, it’s often those incremental and small changes you do over time that will slowly snowball into better results. The best advice to those if to get in touch with a digital agency today and just start a conversation, exchange some figures and possible solutions, you don’t have to commit if you don’t like the sound of things and the trigger is always yours to pull.
Old Moon Digital is a full digital agency, we are always open for discussion and to put together solutions and advice, a conversation can’t hurt, and you may find you actually quite like us! Get in touch today to find out how we can help you crank up those numbers and push your web solution further.