The rise of digital encouraged many brands to reconsider who implements each part of their marketing. The need for more content as part of a digital transformation has created an increased demand for in-house resources.
Paired with digital marketing acceleration that came as a result of the pandemic in 2020, the in-house model has fast surpassed the trend phase and has now become the new normal.
Transitioning to an in-house marketing model has many benefits, including greater agility in response to consumer trends and better application of data. If planned, designed and implemented with a partner who has deep expertise, your brand will experience everything from greater cost efficiencies to improved creative consistency to amplified agility.
So, what is the best way to transition to an in-house marketing model?
With a partner who has the expertise to build it from start to finish and the experience to anticipate any hurdles your brand might encounter along the way. Here are five areas your brand should focus on to simplify the transition to an in-house marketing model.
Cost vs Utilization
While a well-designed in-house operation may be less expensive overall than outsourcing, it is still a cost center, and if the output isn’t effective it can be targeted for reductions. Without strong executive leadership or clear direction, treatment of the studio staff by internal stakeholders can quickly turn into an “all-you-can-eat buffet” of creative and production services. It helps to view the production process philosophically as a manufacturing process to be optimized.
Work with a transition partner to create a team that is structured to build efficiency and agility into processes so your brand can reduce costs while amplifying the effectiveness of your team.
It can be challenging to take a bird’s-eye view of your in-house workflow while you’re immersed in it. It can even lead to unnecessary steps like physical routing of jobs for approval or multiple rounds of revisions driven by poor inputs and execution. A transition partner can help your in-house teams successfully emerge from the cycles that often lead to cost overextensions and workflow short-cuts.
By establishing best practices and defined ways of working, your in-house team will experience clearer paths to focus more exclusively on their areas of expertise. This will particularly benefit your brand’s creative teams, who will be less burdened by process and able to focus more exclusively on output.
Recruitment, Talent & Quality
A lack of existing talent to build a strong in-house foundation will often lead to marketers to extend themselves beyond their capacity or capabilities, acting as creative directors, studio managers and schedulers, rather than focusing on marketing. The team structure needs to fit the creativity level and skillsets required to effectively carry through in-house projects.
A transition partner can help your brand build an in-house model that not only matches the right talent to each position but will help implement efficiencies to ensure team members’ skillsets are amplified rather than overextended or marginalized.
An in-house team is only as effective as the technology made available to them. If they lack things like visibility of team capacity and utilization, workflow ad process management, a solid server structure, intuitive platforms, or API connectivity, then even the greatest minds and most dedicated teams may be limited in their efficiencies.
The success of a transition to an in-house team relies on an integrated tech stack that will maximize the value of existing systems to achieve seamless data exchange, automation, and data-driven insights through real-time reporting.
Tech also plays an important part in ensuring that your team feels part of the business as a whole—a fact more fully appreciated and understood as employees transitioned to remote working in 2020. It’s essential for team members to feel supported and connected to each other, which will encourage talent to demonstrate the values and behaviours of the in-house brand they represent, no matter where they are working from in the world.
In-house studio staffing models tend to be lean in both resources and subject matter expertise. This expertise is especially important in managing workflows, which can be particularly challenging during periods of peak volume. But the right partner can help your teams understand its current state resources and workflows to better define processes, roles, and tools, which can be applied to future projects.
A transition partner can validate the current state and current timings by channel and complexity, as well as interrogate approval cycles by content type and classifications of design project types, which will help your brand create a scalable model when in-house opportunities inevitably increase.
For brands making the transition to the in-house marketing model, it’s important to consider how this structure can help your teams achieve their objectives, but in a smarter, more efficient way.
Here are 5 qualities to look for in a successful transition partner:
- In-house marketing model design experience
- Diversified creative talent pool
- Consultative approach
- Supporting technologies
- Ability to scale effortlessly
By finding the right partner to help implement an in-house marketing model, your brand is building an operation that is designed for purpose, not just for today’s projects, but for the future.
About Clodagh Hurrell
Clodagh has more than twenty years’ experience in brand and marketing communications having begun her career in 1997. She joined SGK in 2008 and has held a number of roles, most recently in business development. Clodagh is a highly motivated, results driven, B2B sales & marketing leader with an excellent and proven track record of winning, nurturing and developing business and strong client relationships in a consultative and solution-based approach, helping organisations of all sizes meet and exceed their business objectives. She has extensive experience in the Entertainment, Consumer Packaged Goods, Beauty & Cosmetics and Life Sciences sectors.