SocialBee logo

Internal Marketing VS External Marketing: What’s Best for Different Business Types and Sizes




Let us ask you this: do you think your business could survive in today’s world with no marketing? 

For a lot of businesses, the answer is most probably no. But why not? 

Well, the main reason is the competition. Even though you have selected a niche market and have a well-developed UVP (unique value proposition), it’s likely that there are a handful of other businesses offering something similar to what you’re offering. 

Selling Bread Is Not Always Easy 

For example, let’s say you open up a bakery. Your products look amazing and they taste just as good as they look. Now, you know for a fact that you have the best-baked goods in town, but others don’t.

How do you convince people to try out your baked goods? You might have guessed it already, but the answer is through marketing. In fact, even if your products wouldn’t be the best in town, good marketing would still be able to bring in customers. 

This isn’t to say that you should depend just on marketing and not improve other areas, like customer service or product development. But you should invest quite a few of your resources in marketing if you want your business to succeed and expand. 

However, when it comes to marketing, there are a lot of things that need to be taken into consideration. And one of them is if you should keep the marketing process in-house or outsource it to specialized marketing agencies. 

If you don’t know what to do, then we’re going to help you figure out what you need to do when it comes to your marketing department. But first, let’s define internal and external marketing: 👇

What Is Internal Marketing?

Internal marketing represents all the marketing processes that are done by your in-house marketing team. 

Be it email marketing, social media marketing, SEO (search engine optimization), or any kind of marketing strategy, your marketing team will be in charge of tasks such as:

  • Coming up with a creative brief 
  • Setting goals for the marketing campaign
  • Conducting the marketing campaign 
  • Creating content such as copies, visuals, newsletters, etc., for each marketing channel in part 
  • Checking out the marketing metrics and KPIs
  • Making any necessary changes to the marketing campaign to ensure its success


What Is External Marketing?

External marketing is the exact opposite of internal marketing. Instead of an in-house marketing department dealing with all the marketing processes, you will have to partner with a marketing agency.

When you strike a partnership with a marketing agency, you have the possibility of choosing if:

OUTSOURCING: The marketing agency will do everything that your own marketing department would have been responsible for.                         

PARTIALLY IN-HOUSE: The marketing agency will be responsible just for certain marketing campaigns that your team doesn’t have the time or the knowledge for.

But just because you have the possibility of outsourcing your marketing tasks, that doesn’t necessarily mean you should. There are situations when handling marketing campaigns in-house can be beneficial, however, there are a lot of benefits to external marketing as well. 

External Marketing Benefits

Outsourcing marketing campaigns can prove to be very advantageous. For many businesses, external marketing means: 

  • Less or no time spent on marketing 
  • Great results that bring in leads

But these are just a few of the benefits. In truth, external marketing can be beneficial due to numerous reasons, such as:

1. Better Marketing Campaigns 

There is nobody quite like a specialized marketing agency that can craft, develop, and oversee a marketing campaign. Not only will these marketers know how to make your business shine through brilliant marketing, but they will also bring forth new ideas and perspectives.

By taking your brand voice and image into consideration these new marketing experts will come up with new and innovative ways to promote and sell your products. 

2. More Marketing Diversity

Now, even though your marketing team is doing a great job, the likelihood of your campaigns being limited diversity-wise is pretty high. What do we mean by that?

Let’s say that your team of marketers is specialized in social media marketing, which is great because about 54% of social browsers use social media to research products

But you can’t use just that strategy to market yourself when there are many ways to promote your business and form connections with your target audience. This is where external marketing can help by conducting more diverse marketing tactics. 

So if you dabbled just in social media marketing until now, a marketing agency can do PPC, SEO, content marketing, email marketing, and much more. 

3. Ongoing Marketing Campaigns 

We all know how things go when you have employees. The holiday season comes by and everybody wants to take their leave and spend time on a beach instead of an office. And that’s only natural!

But the thing with marketing is that you need to deliver content constantly in order to not miss out on any sales opportunities. And when people are out of the office, nobody is there to create and distribute your marketing materials. 

So if you don’t have a marketing automation tool like SocialBee for example, then another option would be external marketing. With external marketing, you don’t have to worry anymore about creating content continuously or reassigning the tasks because there’s somebody else doing it for you. 

4. Reduce Expenses

Now, this might depend on the marketing agency you pick for your business, but generally speaking, hiring an agency is going to be cheaper than hiring multiple individuals to create an in-house marketing team.

Just think about it — to have a powerful in-house team, you’ll need graphic designers, copywriters, content writers, SEO and PPC specialists, advertisers, content managers, etc. Not only that, but you will have to invest money in resources and tools that will make the marketing process easier. 

Compared to this, hiring a good marketing agency represents a once-a-month expense. This is because it already has all the marketing specialists and tools it needs to successfully create and conduct marketing campaigns. 

5. Increase Efficiency and Get Better Results 

If you’re just starting out in the business world, it’s quite likely that you don’t have enough funds to invest in marketing. This means that your marketing department will be low on staff and on resources. 

In this situation your current employees will be spread thin and will not have the time to complete all the tasks, leaving your business with subpar and sometimes even sloppy marketing campaigns.

To avoid this, you can hire a marketing agency. You will have great content at all times and the new marketing agents will closely track the campaigns to make sure everything is going according to plan. 

Get the Latest Social Media Updates!

Join thousands of business owners who get social media resources, tips & tricks delivered directly to their inbox.

When Should You Get External Marketing?

You can outsource a marketing agency at any point in time. But if you’re struggling to know if you actually need external marketing, then let’s see what kind of situations require it:

1. When You’re Starting Out

If you’re an entrepreneur that just started out, or if you have a small developing business, then outsourcing marketing is probably for the best. Here are some of the issues that you might encounter if you try to do the marketing yourself:

🛑 Problem 1🛑 Problem 2🛑 Problem 3
Resources are scarce and would be better invested in sales, product development and improvement, and customer service.Developing marketing campaigns from scratch requires a lot of time and knowledge and tracking marketing metrics is oftentimes confusing.The brand image and voice might suffer modifications through the marketing development, which will make customers lose trust. 

You might be asking yourself if it’s wise to spend your money on a marketing agency. The answer is yes! 

Not only is it going to be cheaper in the long run, but you will also get professionally developed marketing campaigns. Your brand image will also be established and will not suffer changes throughout the marketing process. 

2.When Your Business Field Offers Resources

The truth is, it’s much easier to market things that are commonly known than to market something that is a bit more obscure. Let’s take a look at two business examples to better understand this point:

Businesses selling bread                    

It’s easy to find information for this kind of business. After all, bread is a common item found in households so it’s going to be easy to market it.                                                                                    

Businesses selling LED displays 

Although LED displays can also be commonly found in households, they are much more technical than bread. Marketing LED displays requires specific terminology and technical knowledge, which is not easily found online.

In case your field is more technical, then the best option would be internal marketing. That way your company, which is already an expert in the field, can make specific content and even explain concepts and terms to potential customers.

But outsourcing can work if you are ready to provide plenty of materials and resources to the marketing agency. In case you have a complex business, you should also have meetings with your marketing agents to make sure that they fully understand what you do and what you offer. 

3. When You’re Not Getting the Results You Want 

If you tried everything you could and your marketing campaigns still aren’t taking off, then you need to drop internal marketing and go for external marketing instead. 

As mentioned above, getting an agency to work on your marketing is going to give a fresh perspective on how things should be done. Not only that but you will be working alongside marketing experts that already have an array of marketing tools and know how to bring your marketing campaigns from the dead. 

Where Can You Find a Marketing Agency?

There are a lot of marketing experts all around ready to help you reach your marketing goals, but we’d like to think that our hive of marketing bees is a bit more special.  

SocialBee doesn’t only offer a well-developed social media automation tool, but it goes one step further. It offers Concierge Services that span from social content creation, blog posts, guides – all the way to ads. 

Bottom Line

Internal marketing can be done well if you invest plenty of resources into it, but if you don’t have those resources then outsourcing your marketing activities is the best solution. 

Not only will you get skillfully crafted marketing campaigns out of external marketing, but you will also be able to save up on cash that can be invested in other departments. 

Create, schedule and share social media content with SocialBee!

Social Media Platforms

14-day free trial, no credit card required

Small Businesses Love SocialBee!

Small businesses like yours use SocialBee to share content across multiple social media platforms from one place.

14-day free trial, no credit card required

SocialBee Dashboard
University of Regina
royal foundation

150+ Social Media Content Ideas

Get access to hundreds of social media content ideas, along with tips to start planning your posting calendar today.