Marketing by yourself is productive to a point.
As your business grows more extensive and more profitable, your responsibilities as a business owner will grow with it. You won’t have the time to deal with certain aspects of your business that you used to manage yourself.
One of these aspects is marketing.
While a bootstrapped marketing effort designed and implemented by you may have been vital to the success of your business, there will come a time when you don’t have the time to handle your marketing efforts.
However, if you have the money, your marketing efforts don’t need to die off. Hiring a local inbound marketing agency can bring your business and revenue to brand new heights.
The first question most business owners ask about hiring an agency is a simple one: How much does it cost?
Although the question is simple, the answer is complex and varies depending on the business in question. However, I can say that the absolute minimum cost to hire a local inbound marketing agency is typically $1,000.
That price can rise depending on several factors:
The bulk of your cost can be determined by a single question: What do you want to accomplish?
Your main goal is to increase revenue, of course.
But how much of a revenue increase do you want? How soon do you want it? What do you need to do to achieve it?
Your answers to these questions will be vital in determining the cost of hiring a local inbound marketing agency.
If you don’t have concrete answers to these questions, there’s a good chance your cost will be on the higher side.
A lack of concrete answers also indicates a lack of marketing infrastructure. And the less marketing assets you have, the higher your overall cost will be.
Note: While not indicative of total agency costs, it’s worth noting that successful marketing strategists charge anywhere between $50 to $125 per hour.
The cost of a local inbound marketing agency is dependent on the marketing infrastructure you already have in place.
Having a well-designed website that is optimized for lead generation and conversions is essential. Without a website to serve as a hub to direct traffic from other platforms to, your marketing strategy won’t work.
So if you don’t have a website, or if you have a website with a sub-par design, you’ll need to factor that into your agency fee.
Note: Successful freelance web designers charge anywhere between $25 to $35 per hour.
To generate leads and conversions, marketers need traffic.
Ideally, that traffic will be going to your website. But it can also be going to a Facebook page, a YouTube channel, an Instagram account, or some other web presence you’ve developed.
The more web traffic you’re getting, the less money you’ll need to pay to build up a consistent source of motivated leads.
So if you’ve got that covered, great.
But if you don’t have a good source of traffic, your agency will need to devote time and resources to developing that traffic source. This will typically involve the following strategies:
Note: Content creation is the most critical component in generating web traffic. Depending on the length and industry, you can expect to pay anywhere between $75 and $500 for a high-quality blog post.
Raw traffic is excellent, but it’s ultimately meaningless if you aren’t converting that traffic into paying customers.
A large part of traffic conversion is lead generation. Many businesses generate leads by giving away free information or products in exchange for names and email addresses.
Free lead generation offers can include the following items:
If you don’t have a free lead generation offer in place, your agency will need to create one.
According to Campaign Monitor, email marketing provides an average ROI of 4400% ‒ that’s $44 for every $1 spent.
It’s a no-brainer. If you’re engaged in inbound marketing, leveraging the power of emails needs to be one of your top priorities.
If you want to generate a robust ROI with email marketing, you need a sizable list of highly engaged subscribers.
If you already have such a list, great. The agency can begin working with that immediately, and you’ll save money you’ll have otherwise needed to spend building up that list.
But if you don’t have a list of contacts, your agency will need to put in the painstaking work required to build one. And that means a higher bill at the end of the day.
CRM has been an essential component in successful marketing strategies since the days of hand-penned notes and overstuffed Rolodexes.
Fortunately, this disorganized, clutter-filled method of customer relationship management has since been streamlined and digitized in the form of CRM software.
If you already have paid CRM software, you’re in the clear for this particular marketing cost. But if you don’t, your marketing agency will need to use one, and you’ll need to foot the bill.
And yes, you do need to pay for it ‒ paid CRM software provides a lot of useful information and functionality that can’t be gleaned from free alternatives.
To give you a sense of the costs, check out the websites for the most popular CRM software solutions:
Your exact cost will depend on several factors, including business size and the level of functionality you want from your software. However, premium CRM software costs typically range from $200 to several thousand dollars per month.
As your revenue ambitions in the short term rise, so will the cost of hiring a marketing agency.
This increase in cost will primarily come from the need to create and promote more content to more people in a short period. And while pushing content through organic channels (like the Google search results) is free, it typically takes time to build up substantial traffic via organic methods.
To hack your growth and send it rocketing into the stratosphere, paid advertising is usually a necessity. Just know that marketing efforts that rely heavily on paid advertising cost substantially more than those that don’t.
The typical paid advertising platforms used in an aggressive marketing strategy include the following:
Although most of these advertising types allow for low-cost experimentation, you’re going to have to invest a significant amount of capital if you want to see a decent ROI in a short amount of time. Any inbound marketing agency will tell you this, and they will factor it into their costs.
If you run a larger business, you may want to train your staff members to run your marketing operation for you. This will give you more control over the process, and many inbound marketing agencies will be happy to train your staff members for an additional fee.
Designing and running a comprehensive local inbound marketing strategy is no picnic.
While you can certainly run some aspects of it yourself, it will be tough to maintain an adequate level of sophistication as your business grows and your time becomes more valuable.
Hiring a local inbound marketing agency can take the stresses of marketing off your shoulders.
And while the cost isn’t trivial ‒ especially if you don’t have any marketing infrastructure to work with ‒ the benefits can be phenomenal.