Do you find “either/or” choices restrictive and stuffy? You don’t have to choose between hiring an ad agency or only using an in-house marketing team. It’s possible to use both and get the benefits of each with on-point collaboration between these two powerhouses.

What are the benefits of using an in-house marketing team?

An in-house marketing team is built from the ground up. Each member of the team has an intimate understanding of your products, your positioning, your customer demographics, and the brand in general. Companies who invest in an in-house marketing team can keep and grow expertise within the business. Individuals on the marketing team have both long-term strategies and long-term goals for your brand. They’re experts who can see and adopt new marketing trends fast.

What are the benefits of hiring an outside ad agency?

Ad agencies can get the job done quickly. If you need results fast to satisfy an investor, c-suite, or a new VIP client, then farming out specific, one-off jobs to an ad agency can be worth it. An ad agency also offers a new, fresh take on marketing strategies for your products and services where an in-house team might become myopic, relying on time-tested strategies that risk becoming stale.

Why should you use both an in-house marketing team and an ad agency?

If you’ve invested in building a team of qualified experts for your in-house marketing department, it’s a great idea to appoint an in-house marketer to handle the communication between the rest of the team and the ad agency. What are the major reasons why you should combine the two?

  1. You need the benefits of both types of marketing teams. There may come a time where you need the brand expertise present in your in-house marketing team, along with the innovation that a quality ad agency can give you.

  2. You need to stay flexible. Are you unsure of which strategy is going to give you the best results? Combining the efforts of an in-house marketing team with an ad agency can help you stay flexible. Depending on how things go, you can either focus on expanding your in-house team, or adding more ad agency services at some point during the project.

  3. Your budget is limited. Hiring a fully staffed, in-house marketing team can be cost prohibitive for many startups and small to mid-sized businesses. If you don’t have the budget to employ a full in-house marketing team just yet, combining two or three in-house marketers with ad agency services can save your business money. An ad agency can fill in the gaps where you may be missing valuable in-house marketing expertise.

Farming out work to an ad agency, or staying strictly in-house both have their pros and cons. But when you combine the two, you get the benefits of both. Where one side is weak, the other can lend their strengths to bridge any gaps in your marketing plans. Instead of limiting yourself with an either/or choice, consider using both types of marketing powerhouses to grow your business and increase your revenue.


Your agency just won an important new business pitch, and everyone's fired up! But then you run into what seems to have become the norm after 18-24 months. The client calls and informs you they decided to conduct a review. You feel totally blind-sided. What might have happened? How did you lose touch? And most importantly what "undermined the trust factor" that won the business? After all, chemistry and trust are most often cited as the key factors in victories.

Let's see what could have caused this:

  • Did you on-board the client properly?

  • Was there an open, honest  offsite meeting that you arranged and paid for? Did you continue these offsite meetings?

  • Did you both share in the CEO's mandate for success over the first two years?

  • Did you revisit the quality of service over this period? Honestly and openly.

  • And, did you build a continuity team that proactively provided business building ideas in marketing, digital and analytics? Every month, every quarter.

That said, proof of performance is your greatest ally today. Here are some keys to keep it trending upward:

  1. Outstanding Creativity: Across key connection points, with all members of your team owning them.

  2. Relationship Building: All members charged with building relationships with their counterparts.

  3. Budgeting & ROI: Pay closer attention to your compensation agreement and revisit it with an open mind. You don't want your profitability to be marginalized, but you do want your client openly engaged with budget concerns.

All of this points towards the major issues that are an impediment these days: Client/Agency trust, and most recently transparency, have eroded. Your focus should be to work everyday to make these non-issues. Breathe some life into the relationship every chance you get. And last, but certainly not least, "Love your clients, or someone else will".  

The end.