Small Business Marketing: DIY vs Outsourcing, Which Is Better?

DIY vs Outsourcing Marketing - Woman working by herself vs team working in marketing
Nicole CruzNicole Cruz
May 6, 2021
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If you’re starting a small business for the first time, you need all the exposure you can get. This is not just through your local business area but also by making use of several digital marketing strategies to reach potential customers online.

However, it’s difficult to work on your small business marketing if you’re not familiar with the necessary steps to succeed. This is why many entrepreneurs outsource their marketing team to make things simpler. One area of hesitance, however, is the money you will be spending by hiring a team compared to doing it on your own. Thus, many small businesses are torn between the two choices.

What exactly can one expect when hiring a marketing agency, versus using do-it-yourself (DIY) strategies? Understand the pros and cons of both choices below.

Small Business Marketing: DIY vs Outsourcing

DIY Marketing

Woman sitting in front of her laptop working

As a beginner, you may be tempted to do your own marketing strategy. The reasons are pretty much self-explanatory--you would want to save money, you can experiment, and there are a lot of free resources online. However, there are also pitfalls of trying to do everything on your own especially if you don’t have the right skill set to bring your offers to the right audience. Take a look at the specific pros and cons for DIY small business marketing:


  1. Affordable: If you plan to DIY your small business marketing, you would not spend anything, except for your hosting, domain, and other subscription plans which you will be doing on your own. Paying a marketing agency can be costly for some entrepreneurs so DIY is an affordable choice.
  2. Full control: Are you an entrepreneur who wants full control over your marketing strategy, and are willing to look at every single detail? DIY strategies can work if you are more than motivated to learn about the nitty-gritty details of search engine optimization, social media marketing, website formatting, and many others.
  3. Level of customization: For DIY small business marketing, you can choose the types of marketing areas you would like to automate or do manually. Since you are aware of the whole process, there is a high level of customization.


  1. Time-consuming: Many small business owners underestimate the amount of time spent on marketing. This is why companies have their own marketing team--it can be challenging to handle all areas of business operations while keeping your marketing strategies on point.
  2. Lack of results: If you’re inexperienced with digital or traditional marketing strategies, you may waste time and money waiting for results to show up. Some entrepreneurs are better off working with experts rather than doing things on their own leading to slow growth.
Team discussing a project

Outsource Your Marketing

The alternative to DIY small business marketing is outsourcing a team of experts to help you with your promotional needs. Since these marketing teams are already experienced, they can boost your rankings, distinguish from competitors, and perform the best practices there is in the industry. Below are the pros and cons of outsourcing marketing agencies:


  1. Saving time: With an outsourced team, you can save time and focus on the major decisions for your business. There is no need to formulate blog posts, schedule social media posts, or create your own PPC campaigns--a marketing agency can do all these tasks and more.
  2. Better results: Beginners who want to succeed fast are better off with an outsourced marketing team because they can provide faster results. Even if you’re investing upfront, knowing that your business can take off faster and generate more revenue means that outsourcing is worth it.
  3. Long term partnership: Marketing teams can be partners for the long term. This means that they can create monthly goals for your business, giving you a solid plan on how to succeed in reaching your target audience. Being partners with experts gives you the assurance that you will accomplish your marketing objectives.


  1. Initial investment: As with outsourcing in general, hiring a marketing team requires an investment upfront. This may not be ideal for those who barely have a budget to spend on marketing.
  2. Finding a perfect fit: There are many small business marketing agencies, and it can be difficult to find a perfect fit for your needs. Ideally, it is best to pick a team that specializes in the areas you want to focus on, such as SEO, social media, content marketing, or PPC ads.

For those who want to get the best of both worlds, there is an alternative to picking certain areas of marketing you wish to automate. For example, you can ask expert help in the area of optimizing pay-per-click advertisements and SEO, while you focus on creating content for your social media accounts. It all depends on your strengths, availability of time, and current budget.

Small Business Marketing: DIY vs Outsourcing Overview

Laptop with the text "What's your marketing strategy?"

When it comes to small business marketing, it is important to consider the pros and cons mentioned above. Evaluating the resources you can work on, thinking of your marketing goals, and consulting marketing experts can help you arrive at the best decision. Combining DIY and outsourced services is also possible depending on your needs.

If you’re looking for an El Monte Digital Marketing team to help you succeed, E-Marketing Associates has got you covered.

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