Before the internet, a marketing manager could reach a customer in one of three ways: paid advertising, direct mail or telemarketing. With content marketing (or “inbound marketing”), a company can bypass faceless intermediaries, instead building relationships directly with its customers.
This method is proving to be a profitable investment. Inbound marketing generates 54 percent more leads than a traditional marketing funnel. But what is the best way to construct a content marketing strategy? Is it more profitable and efficient to produce content in-house or to hire a content marketing agency?
Best practices for setting up an effective content marketing strategy do not include foisting content marketing duties onto an already busy marketing team. A typical marketing staff member creates an 800-word blog post in approximately five hours. If that writer produces two blog posts per week, he or she is taking 10 hours a week away from his or her other duties. This blog development time includes the topic research, writing, and content strategy.
Once the content is created, a separate person must review it for writing quality and consistency with the voice of the brand. Typically, there are two to three rounds of revision and editing, each taking an additional 1-2 hours of the marketing staff member’s time.
Some companies choose a hybrid model, outsourcing the initial content creation, then taking care of edits, revisions and formatting in-house. Hiring a freelance writer will cost about $80 per 800-word blog post. But that outlay does not cut much of the work; once the content is submitted to in-house staff, the real work begins.
A marketing manager should typically expect three to four rounds of editing at a cost of $25 to $50 per round. From there, one article can take two to three hours of management approval time. Once the content is edited, it must be given meta titles and descriptions and converted to HTML. That means one – or several – employees will be taking time away from their work on the vision and mission of the company to spend time on something that is not their strength.
A third, equally suboptimal option is hiring a dedicated full-time content marketing staff. A content marketing team needs at least four key people: a writer, an editor, an inbound marketer and a community manager. Combined salaries for these four employees averages about $221,000 per year, not including a benefits package.
Professionals at content marketing agencies do not just generate and format content for you. They can also help create a content marketing strategy, generate topics, and quickly produce content that professional editors have reviewed and revised. Outsourcing content creation comes with several ancillary benefits as well. A marketing manager can:
- Quickly scale his or her business up or down
- Use the expertise of other writers and content marketers to gain more leads
- Speed up turnaround time
Tempesta Media, a full-service content marketing agency, thoroughly vets its writers for content expertise and writing quality. Great content begins with the writers, and the writers here rarely produce writing that requires revisions. Tempesta’s rigorous screening means that content requires 90 percent fewer revisions than the industry average.
When work is commissioned from Tempesta Media, the marketing manager fills out a Voice Profile Questionnaire. The Voice Profile communicates how to produce work that is consistent with the tone of the client’s brand, ensuring that the resulting product will align seamlessly with the rest of the client’s presence.
Tempesta Media keeps billing simple, with monthly and annual content packages. The price of the content is based on a fixed per-word price that includes writing, editing, unlimited revisions, SEO optimization, use of the platform and plagiarism screening. Easily order content within the platform and the price of the article is deducted from your content package balance. Each article is turned around in 5 business days. All told, Tempesta Media produces quality content for as much as 80 percent less than the cost of in-house production.
One of the main benefits of outsourcing content marketing is the agility it offers. A company can easily scale its content creation up or down depending on need without hiring or firing full-time employees. There is no personnel gap if someone leaves the company or is out sick. Cients can adjust the amount of content they order on a weekly basis.
When a company outsources its content marketing department, it saves other resources as well. When employers outsource, they free themselves from the requirement of fulfilling HR needs, employee benefits or office space. Another major headache avoided is having to become an expert in content creation on top of being an expert in their own sector.
Content marketing is a powerful tool that generates more leads for a fraction of the cost of traditional marketing. But treating it as an afterthought or failing to create a comprehensive strategy will inevitably result in failure.
Instead, it should be planned and executed by professionals who know which strategies are effective and which are not. A company like Tempesta Media can provide a full-service content and social media solution for a company looking to benefit from inbound marketing. Contact a Tempesta Media representative today to get a quote for your content marketing plans. You may find that outsourcing content creation is not just a great solution – it’s the best one.