Lots of business owners keep asking themselves if the time is right to hire a marketing consultant.
You are in business to make money and not to make someone else rich. Then you quickly learned about all the costs of running a successful business and started making moves to minimise yours. The most obvious way was to become a jack of all trades to keep consulting and payroll expenses down.
You might be an absolute whiz at multitasking, but marketing is a different beast. If you are not getting good returns on your efforts and inputs, maybe it’s time to get help. But how do you know when it’s the perfect time? Take note, and look out for these sure signs…
1. All your marketing ideas seem perfect to you
Take it or leave it: a marketing strategy consultant is more strategic and objective than you. Being in charge of your marketing has some merit. You should know your business better than anyone else, after all. However, regardless of your business knowledge, there will always be some cracks in your marketing strategy for two reasons.
First, you have a good knowledge of your business. Marketing is not the same as your business. Even if you devour every guerrilla marketing book and SEO tactics article out there, your knowledge will still be limited. In the end, even well-executed research can’t replace experience.
Your love for your craft may also make you stumble somewhere along the way. For instance, let’s take a look at writers. Writers are great at crafting perfect sentences. There are times when some of these perfectly crafted sentences don’t fit the article. Experienced writers get rid of those rogue sentences even if it doesn’t feel easy. However, poor writers will hold onto the crappy ideas because they like them – often failing to admit that they’re crappy. Your beloved marketing idea may have a fatal flaw that’s difficult for you to spot.
2. Business isn’t booming
It’s not uncommon for entrepreneurs to go through ups and downs in cash flow, and most business owners wouldn’t want to spend money when business is slow. However, one needs to analyse why business has slowed down. Is your business seasonal? Has competition become stiffer? Are you failing to attract customers with your marketing? A consultant is best equipped to help you deal with these challenges and others
A marketing consultant can spearhead promotions that bring in more customers during “famine periods.” They also know how to compete with top brands that have way bigger ad budget. Good marketers can even persuade prospects to buy stuff even when the economy is slowing down. One indeed has to spend money to make money, spending it on a consultant when business is slow may be a wise move.
3. You’re unsure of the working strategies
Marketing consultants don’t just leave you hanging after helping you craft a marketing plan. Instead, they carry you along and intimate you with what part of the plan is performing well and which parts aren’t doing well.
Business owners find it challenging to know what statistic to track. Even if you know the metrics to track, getting it done the right way may be a problem. Many blog and and website hosts will help you track important statistics and present the report to you, but you may be unable to interpret the data. There’s no point tracking numbers if you don’t know how to interpret or use them.
4. You need a working strategy
There’s no denying the fact that no one knows your business better than you – but that familiarity can become a problem. Most entrepreneurs don’t think their marketing plan needs help. But a seasoned consultant will insist on strategically building a solid foundation before presenting a range of strategies designed to generate traffic.
A consultant has a track record of haven designed and implemented loads of marketing plans. A consultant analyses your work, looks at the good and the bad, then helps you build on what’s productive and ditch what’s not.
5. You need streamlined objectives
A seasoned consultant helps you determine your most pressing goals based on where you intend to be in a year or a couple of years – not next week. And part of the consultant’s duty is to ensure that the number of priority objectives is small at every point in time.
6. They are an objective resource
If you have a team you work with, you are probably not new to diverse opinions and ideas. One of the huge advantages of hiring a marketing consultant is that they function as an objective resource. A seasoned consultant will absorb all the suggestions, perspectives, and ideas and develop the best solution for your business. One of the biggest strengths of marketing consultants is their ability to deal with office politics and initiate cooperation among rival individuals. This is because they are seen as outsiders who have no vested interest other than the growth and success of the business.
7. You need to better allocate your resources
Sometimes, in a quest to adopt the “do it all yourself” policy, it’s hard to know when to call for external assistance. You may be able to install and update plugins in your WordPress dashboard, set up your email follow-up series, struggle to create a decent header image for your social media profile, but are you finding it hard to focus on more important aspects of your business?
Of course, you might need to sort out those things above, but a seasoned consultant will make sure that you are not wasting your time on tasks that can be better handled by others. With their help, you might just become the CEO again!
8. They are time savers
Small businesses get overwhelmed easily. However, a seasoned marketing consultant will help you free up more time, even in the short run. Jobs you are struggling with and spending 20 hours a week to complete can be handled perfectly and completed by a consultant in less time. A seasoned consultant knows that their chances of getting rehired increases exponentially when they deliver lots of value, so they strive to deliver as much as possible within the time budgeted for the project.
9. Your conversion needs optimisation
We might prefer this one the most. Many marketers and business owners keep dwelling on traffic and other stuff when they ought to be putting all their focus on conversion. Once you can put your products or services in front of people who are ready and willing to say yes to your sales presentation, you are on your way to building a hugely successful business.
Once your conversion is increasing, you can invest in paid traffic, knowing that you can make a significant return on your investment.
10. You can’t get your act together
One of the top secrets of consulting is that you’ll always need someone to hold you accountable – someone to keep you in check and bring you to a rude awakening if you start to drift away from the main objectives. A consultant can help you stay laser-focused rather than drifting off into new ideas and social networks.
You can achieve a part of this through set appointments and nagging, but the most satisfaction comes when your focus begins to yield results. A seasoned consultant insists on metrics connected to objectives and helps you understand the incredible value you’ll get by achieving your goals.
A marketing consultant designs a strategy, sets the turnaround period for the task, and then monitors everything to make sure that things fall into place. Some people are highly motivated when the time to meet with their consultant draws near. So, you are finding it had to focus? Hiring a consultant may be your best fix.
11. You don’t have the right connections
Even if you’ve attained “guru” status at networking, a marketing consultant has important connections you may not have. Most of the people you know are likely in relation to your business. A marketing consultant has access to web developers, professional photographers, graphics designers, and other experts who can help take your business to the next level.
A marketing consultant knows how to choose the best out of these professionals to achieve optimum results. Their connections alone save you loads of time and money. You won’t waste valuable time and resources trying to hire service providers, and you can be sure of getting the best services for your budget.
Raising your chances of success with a marketing consultant
These are all compelling reasons for hiring a marketing consultant, but the best of them all may yet be the simplest. Research reveals that entrepreneurs, who consistently work with consultants on tasks they have less expertise in, have a higher chance of succeeding. No one is an island of success. If you’re the brightest in the room every time, it’s not a good look. When it’s time to choose a marketing consultant for your business, follow your instincts. If they’ve helped you this far, they are probably right.
Deciding the right time to hire a marketing consultant remains a critical business decision. Be on the lookout for any of the ten signs above to know the right time to take that step.
Okay, you are free to do your stuff on social media or check your emails, but tomorrow work resumes on your marketing plan.
Need help with your marketing?
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Our senior marketing consultants have over 20 years experience across many different types of industries and have been able to reach our clients goals without the need to put on a permanent employee and the extra burden of another headcount. With so many testimonials to our name, you can be rest assured that our advice and extensive work experience working with startups and SMEs means that we have a marketing solution no matter what stage of business you’re at.