When you’re running your own business, honesty is important. Honesty tells you if you’re making money, if the new hire you hoped would be your star has turned into the rotten apple no one wants, and if outsourcing some of your work is a bad idea. Today, I’m going to discuss the disadvantages of outsourcing your marketing.
1. You have little say over how your outsourced help uses their time.
You and your contractor will certainly agree to deadlines and project details, but you usually cannot dictate that your outsourced content creator, for example, be available for you whenever you call, or that they work at their desk just for you from 8:30-11:15 every day.
When you outsource your marketing to another company, whether it be a solopreneur or an agency, they are balancing multiple clients. If you do require specific availability, explain that up front and put it in your contract with them. If you didn’t discuss that with your outsourced help during contract negotiations, then you may be out of luck.
2. Don’t expect your hired-out help to instantly help you at the last minute.
Any company worth their salt, whether freelancer or otherwise, will definitely try their best to accommodate all their clients. I’ve certainly had clients call me up at the last minute and ask for immediate help. I say yes as often as I can, but sometimes I have to say no because I’m on deadline for other clients. When you employ your own people, you can tell them where to spend their time during their work day, and if an emergency shows up, you can tell them to drop what they’re doing and help you.
3. Outsourcing your marketing to a company in a different country can make legal recourse a real pain.
This tip aims more at outsourced marketing help that is not in your country. Let’s say you hire a freelance writer who lives in a different country, because their rates are cheaper than those of writers who live in your own country. If you discover a few months later that this writer has provided you with plagiarized material and you’re now in hot water because of it, you may have difficulties suing the writer. It’s possible, of course, but much harder.
4. Reaching your outsourced help may be difficult.
If your outsourced help doesn’t deliver on time, the first thing you’ll likely do is send an email to get a status update. But what if you don’t receive a reply? Then you start calling. Also nothing. So you send a registered letter demanding your deposit back, only to have that letter returned because the company has moved to a new location and didn’t leave a forwarding address. Yes, this is an extreme situation, but every profession has its hacks. You can often eliminate this advantage to outsourcing your marketing by working through your network to find someone.
5. You need someone available full-time.
Generally speaking, if you need someone available 35-40 hours a week, you need to jump through the legal hoops of employing them. I’ve written about it before here and here.
Outsourcing can be the answer to your prayers: you need some work done, and it’s easier to hire it out than do it in-house. But outsourcing also has its disadvantages. As you’re deciding to hire out or in, keep the above five points in mind, and they should help you find a solution that matches your needs.
For questions on how I can help you as an outsourced writer, contact me: I’d be happy to talk with you.