Should Insurance Agencies & Brokers Staff Up Or Outsource Their Marketing Needs?

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March 5th, 2015


Most insurance agencies and wholesale brokers know they need to improve their marketing, embrace social media and update their website. All of these are important to the long term success and growth. To accomplish this, owners need to determine how and when to spend valuable budget dollars. This invariably leads to the question of adding staff, attempting to leverage inexperienced internal resources, or outsourcing insurance marketing initiatives. Let’s review these three options.

Option 1 – I’ll use a recently graduated family friend: It is rare this option works out, and it’s one of the most expensive selections. The fully burdened cost is likely to exceed $50,000 a year, and the recent graduate likely “doesn’t know what they don’t know.” These inexperienced resources need to understand website development, eMarketing, social media marketing, and SEO. There are 5 different skill sets needed for this list, plus the experience necessary to successfully execute these initiatives. Not only does the agency pay the $50K, they also pay for all of the on the job mistakes, errors in judgment, technical deficiencies, and industry inexperience.

Option 2 – I’ll hire a marketing VP: This is likely a better solution than option 1, albeit requiring even more budget. An experienced marketing VP (let’s call this person a $100,000+ resource) will bring both knowledge and know-how to the table. Yet even with this resource the agency or brokerage will undoubtedly require specialized skills and tools in the areas of web development, SEO, eMarketing and more. A variation on this theme is to hire a seasoned marketing manager, perhaps a $75,000 a year resource with some of the experience and skills noted above.

Option 3 – I’ll outsource my marketing to an experienced marketing firm: There is a well known paradigm called “Good, Fast, Cheap”. In this paradigm, you’re supposed to pick which two of the criteria you want (Good and Fast, Good and Cheap, Fast and Cheap). But in the new internet based world, it is possible to get all three. Agencies and brokers can select an experienced insurance marketing firm, and get all of the services mentioned above at a lower cost than even Option 1, the inexperienced college graduate.

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