Why hire a marketing consultant?
Businesses of all sizes need to have a comprehensive marketing strategy to scale up and be successful. However, if you don't have the budget for recruitment or the required in-house expertise, it can be challenging to know where to start. Marketing consultants are experts who can come into your business to assess and understand your customers and build a successful strategy. They can hit the ground running, using their experience and industry knowledge to develop tactics that will engage customers and improve business performance.
Some of the technical skills they can bring into your business are below.
Along with experience, the ability to understand your business, dynamism, focus on ROI, and a history of success, marketing consultants' technical knowledge means they will create a strategy that is right for you. Marketers that document a strategy are 538% more likely to report success than those who don't, emphasizing the value that a consultant can bring to your business.
What does a marketing consultant do?
A marketing consultant's role can vary depending on the business, but their responsibilities can be broken down into five core categories.
A marketing consultant will work with business leaders to understand their objectives. They have an abundance of knowledge about market trends, consumer demand, and other dimensions that will drive an enterprise's success or failure. Clients can develop an effective plan that will work for the business, including the opportunities and threats (SWOT analysis).
Marketing consultants will have worked with companies across several industry verticals. With that exposure, they will have a network of contacts that includes technical experts, specialist vendors, potential investors, and financial partners. For smaller businesses and startups, the network contacts can point them in the right direction to bring in the right tools and people to quickly drive the business forwards. Consultants will have a network of specialists that will make short work of your requirements. Whether it be SEO, web design, or content, they will know individuals and businesses who have experience getting the job done. This takes the pressure off you having to source other vendors as you can rely on the consultant's network of experts.
A professional marketing consultant will be able to utilize various marketing tools and techniques to build brand equity in a competitive digital landscape. They know what it takes to engage customers and get your brand out there.
Every consultant knows that you need to know the market and customers before creating a strategy. They will perform an in-depth analysis of your customer base to understand their demands and pain points. Consultants will be up-to-date with the latest marketing trends and how to apply them to your business. For example, in 2021, social media platforms are set to become a top channel for purchase, and a consultant will be on the pulse to help you adapt.
Licensing, compliance, and regulation
When you are busy creating content, building a social media presence, or establishing your brand, it is easy to forget about compliance and regulation. For example, GDPR (EU), PDPA (Singapore), and CCPA (California) standards play an important role in your marketing strategy, with specific customer consent rules. A marketing consultant will be aware of these and fit them into your plan. You can see an overview of the PDPA (Personal Data Protection Act) below.
Difference between a marketing consultant and a marketing agency
A marketing consultant will focus on business strategy, whereas agencies tend to be more tactical. For example, if you know what content you want to post on social media but don't have the resource to do it, you would hire an agency to help you. They will have a team of creative people and designers that can deliver unique messages and campaigns.
The marketing consultant will inform the business of the best ways to engage with their audience or acquire leads. Using analytical tools, a consultant will understand the customer base and develop a marketing strategy to achieve your goals. They may then outsource the actions to reach those goals to an agency.
For example, at cmocre8, there are three core principles to efficient consultancy.
Why you need a marketing consultant
A professional marketing consultant is well worth the investment, given the impact they can have in assessing and improving your business. Some of the most common reasons for hiring a marketing consultant are:
You want to develop a robust digital marketing plan that can meet your short and long-term business goals
There is a desire to scale-up your business, but you don't have the experience or resources in-house to take it forward
You want to understand your target audience to see where there is an opportunity to enter new markets
You need somebody to establish and report key business metrics such as conversion rate, retention rate, customer loyalty ratios, social media engagement, and profit margins.
The need for somebody to lead on content creation and establish a customer journey and communication strategy.
Hiring a consultant gives you peace of mind knowing that the business is being guided by an experienced professional. You will also avoid the costs associated with recruiting a permanent employee, such as health insurance, vacations, payroll tax, training, and pensions.
Benefits of a marketing consultant
Despite marketing consultants demanding a higher daily rate than a permanent hire, you will achieve a better return on investment in the long run. As well as the costs mentioned above, the flexibility of time and resources provided by a marketing consultant offers solutions that you can scale whenever you need to. In a post-Covid-19 economy, businesses need to tighten their operations. An experienced marketing consultant will help you grow and keep up with the competition rather than only maintaining the status quo during challenging times.
We've said it a few times in this post, but hiring a marketing consultant means you are getting a field expert who is ready to hit the ground running in your business. Consultants offer a fresh pair of eyes on your objectives and might find issues holding the company back. They bring diversity and various ideas from their client experiences, with tried and tested methodologies. As they are not committed to a single business, consultants can be more creative and think outside of the box rather than being tied to how the company has always done things.
When should you hire a marketing consultant?
We've talked about the benefits of a marketing consultant and what they do, but you need to understand when you might need their support as a business. There are a few signs that point towards the need for consultancy.
Lack of new business enquiries. A marketing consultant will analyze your results and advise on strategies to generate more leads.
Low return but high marketing spend. It's not uncommon for businesses to throw much money into marketing without tracking the return on investment. An external specialist can ascertain where you are going wrong and fix the gaps in your strategy.
You are unsure what works and what doesn't. If you focus on high-level results like the volume of leads, you might think the business is performing well. However, if none of those leads are converting, the marketing activity is not genuinely working. A marketing consultant will help you track vital metrics like cost per enquiry (CPE) and cost per acquisition (CPA) that offer a better measure of success.
Lack of focus. In businesses run by an entrepreneur, they can sometimes be moving on to the next idea before making the current ones work. A marketing consultant will stabilize and maximize existing opportunities.
You don't understand your target audience. If you don't know your customers, it becomes almost impossible to send them relevant marketing messages. A consultant will conduct the necessary research to ensure your marketing is on point.
You have an inexperienced team. A marketing consultant can guide junior teams with their experience and knowledge. As digital marketing is constantly changing, the expertise can be pivotal in driving the in-house team forwards.
cmoCre8 is a team of Singapore-based marketing consultancy experts focused on helping you achieve your marketing goals. With vast experience across large multinational companies, including MasterCard and General Electric Company (GE), you can tap into our knowledge to generate brand awareness, leads, and revenue. Cmocre8 has an excellent track record in digital marketing, CRM, content marketing, PR, social media, branding, analytics, and other aspects of marketing strategy. Our hands-on approach will help you develop a comprehensive digital marketing program to transform your business.