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The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022

Take your inbound strategy to the next level

  • Master the 7 principles of highly effective inbound marketing
  • Dramatically improve your inbound sales
  • Get more buy-in at your company

Inbound Marketing ROI: In-House vs. Agency…Who Delivers More?

By John Bonini

Inbound Marketing ROI: In-House vs. Agency…Who Delivers More?

Editor's Note: This is a very old post. For more current information, we recommend you check out "Marketing Contractor vs. Internal Marketing Team vs. Marketing Agency" by Bob Ruffolo from 2016.

The value of any marketing decision or venture boils down to one thing only; return on investment.

Is the time and resources you’re putting into inbound marketing delivering results and helping you achieve your business goals?

 Join the IMPACT coaches for a deep dive on a new topic every month in our free virtual event series.

The biggest factor in how fast or slow you’ll experience an ROI is the consistency in which you’re creating content on a regular basis. Content feeds the entire machine and helps to drive more relevant traffic, educate prospects, and generate more qualified leads.

Obviously the more resources you put into inbound marketing, the more you’ll get out of it. However, as previously mentioned there’s a lot that goes into executing a successful inbound marketing campaign. From planning and development, to the completion of daily, weekly, and monthly tasks, to tracking and measuring your analytics to identify areas of improvement and increased efficiency; maintaining a strong and consistent approach in these areas will ensure a more timely, sizable return on investment.

Experience is key here, as knowing and understanding the vast amount of marketing data available is a full-time job in itself, and having the know-how to navigate and understand analytics will achieve results faster.

Inbound Marketing ROI...Who Will Deliver?


As previously mentioned, the biggest contributing factor for seeing a positive ROI from your inbound marketing campaign is the quality and consistency of the work you’re putting into it. Having the necessary experience is critical in getting results and achieving your business goals. Inbound marketing is relatively new, so it can be a challenge to find the talent and experience necessary to build a great team.

This isn’t to say that you won’t see an ROI from an in-house marketing team, however, it’s important to know and understand the limitations of a smaller team in regards to the ROI you expect.

An in-House team will work tirelessly in the development and execution of the following strategies:

    • Website Content
    • Blogging
    • Premium Content
    • Social Media
    • Email

If you don’t have the resources to hire designers or developers, they’ll also have to outsource work to design agencies in order to complete projects such as:

    • Website Design
    • Landing Page Development
    • Call-to-Action Design
    • Social Media Artwork
    • Creation of Infographics

Often times outsourcing project work can result in delays, missed deadlines, and a “back-and-forth” type relationship due to unfamiliarity with your company and brand.

All of this will affect the timeliness and size of your return on investment.


Rather than relying on a DIY philosophy when attempting to execute a full-service campaign, and inbound marketing agency provides an all hands on deck style approach to achieving your business goals and delivering an ROI.

Your business goals are the central focus, as everything in the planning and development stages is designed based around them.

An agency will help you identify specific, measurable, and realistic marketing goals and develop a marketing game plan that defines the strategy for you to attain those goals within your required time frame.

From that point forward, an entire team of marketing experts works to execute a successful campaign. A great agency won’t focus on tasks alone, but rather the results you need.

That will dictate what strategies need to be implemented and ultimately, the size of your return on investment.

An agency is also equipped with advanced analytical software – like HubSpot – and this means your marketing campaign is tracked and measured using this same software.  You’ll have full access to these analytical tools as well, which makes calculating your ROI easy to do.

Most importantly, because of the unique access and understanding of your marketing analytics, and agency will be able to tie every single lead, customer, and dollar back to the marketing initiative that created them.

Commonly referred to as closed-loop reporting, there’s simply no more effective way of ensuring an ROI.

Still not sure if you should hire an agency or not?

For more answers on whether you should keep your inbound marketing campaign in house or hire an agency, check out our newest ebook.  You'll find all of the answers that you're looking for!

Join the IMPACT coaches for a deep dive on a new topic every month in our free virtual event series.


Working With Marketing Agencies
Published on May 14, 2013

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