QUIZ- In-house Or Out-house? Choosing The Best Marketing Plan For Your Company

By: pry12

Thinking of implementing a new marketing plan? Then go back-to-school with this marketing quiz!

1. How do you staff your marketing communication department?

A) What department? It’s just me and some support people.

B) We employ a complete staff of creative, media and PR people, offering salaries and benefits.

C) We manage a network of preferred vendors for specific functions and pay only for the work delivered.

2. How do you manage marketing costs and return on investments?

A) We have a small budget for marketing and can’t exceed it.

B) Since most of the work is done by internal staff, we don’t measure productivity, only payroll costs.

C) We give vendors a purchase order based on their estimate and hold them to it.

3. What tools do I currently have available for marketing?

A) Nothing. I have a few envelopes and a laptop with an internet connection.

B) We buy the latest software (such as Adobe CS 5.5) so we’re always upgrading equipment and programs.

C) I have a few things, a nice camera and small printer and a few contacts at the local news paper. I rely on outside agencies for the big projects.

4. What’s my competition up to?

A) Everything. My market is saturated with marketing and advertisement, I have no idea how I will gain a foot-hold— they are so far beyond my company.

B) I have a good idea of where my competition is, yet I feel like I’m constantly playing catch-up. I know that my company has an edge in the market, but I don’t know the best angle to utilize it.

C) We’re keeping our head above water, but we could be doing more.

5. What is the primary purpose of your marketing efforts currently?

A) To inform customers about our products.

B) T o produce all the materials ourselves.

C) To engage customers and build our brand.

9. The biggest challenges in your marketing efforts are…

A) Finding the time and resources to produce materials.

B) Managing a large internal staff and keeping people and equipment up to date.

C) Coordinating various marketing suppliers to maintain brand image and message continuity.

10. What’s the future of your marketing efforts?

A) Can’t do much more unless business improves.

B) We can keep increasing staff and equipment to keep up with new marketing challenges.

C) We’ll continue working with trusted marketing partners and continue to demand new thinking and solutions to improve the efficiency of our marketing efforts.

Mostly A’s
You’re a busy person, trying to do too much with too little. You know you need marketing guidance, but at the same time, you like the idea of keeping the company lean while focusing on doing what you do best.

Concerns: The thought of hiring a marketing department is daunting, and you’re tight on both time and money.

Suggestions: Starting looking around for great marketing efforts in your area. You might want to talk to a small agency or studio that can take on some specific business building projects, such as direct mail or social media. This will create more revenue to do more marketing projects which in turn will…you get the idea. Be realistic in your expectations and always share your ideas.

Mostly B’s
You have always followed the model of keeping your marketing efforts in-house. You feel that a small team of dedicated player’s best serve your industry, but sometimes wonder if their complacent and the quality could be better.

Concerns: Turn-over is costly and losing one person can be a detriment to your marketing efforts. Yet, you don’t want to isolate your internal employees by hiring out. Also,a fast-paced market means that employees spend a majority of their time doing research and investigating new modes of marketing rather than producing great creative work.

Suggestions: Regularly evaluate your in-house team. Make sure that your employees have the most adequate services and tools to be successful and that the operations are running smoothly. You should consider the real cost of in-house marketing departments in terms of productivity, expertise, efficiency, market awareness and competitive creativity. Consult regularly with an agency to boost morale and generate new ideas. You may want to consider expanding your marketing efforts by working with an agency on retainer to take on projects where your internal team doesn’t have the bandwidth. Be honest and open with your internal staff about the reasons that you are considering hiring an agency, and keep them involved in the process.

Ultimately you must decide— do I want to build a department or build my business?

Mostly C’s
You understand the value of working with trusted marketing professional partners and you expect cutting edge thinking, sharp creative, challenging marketing concepts and dedicated service.

Concerns: You spend a lot of time shopping around for the best marketing firm for the task, and are worried about maintaining brand image and message continuity.

Suggestions: Regularly evaluate your marketing efforts regularly and maintain an open relationship with your agency. Keep informed and updated, always share your opinions with your marketing professionals. A successful marketing relationship is an extension of your business and provides you with an excellent ROI and market awareness.

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Priya N is a blogger & internet marketer from Mumbai. She is blogging on Jobs8Home about tips & ideas on small business, marketing, make money topics etc.

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