Outsourced vs. In-house Marketing

Posted by Albers Communications on December 15, 2019

You know those job alerts that LinkedIn and Indeed send every morning? All of us at Albers Communications get them, too. None of us are looking, but even if we were, they wouldn’t be a fit.

Often, they’re for jobs that we’re well-qualified to do, but the pay is not commensurate with our years of experience and expertise. Other times, we know we’d be great for one half of the job, and someone else on our team would nail the other half. And then there are the organizations that post the same job every six months or so. Clearly, they’re struggling to find a unicorn.

Perhaps that unicorn does exist, but it doesn’t take the form of an in-house employee. And that’s not what every organization needs – or can afford – in the first place.

Hiring an in-house person means budgeting for each of the following:

  • Salary: this can be anywhere from entry-level for someone just out of college to six figures for an experienced and well-rounded marketer
  • Benefits: according to the S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employers can expect to pay the employee’s salary plus an additional 31.7 percent in health insurance, vacation time, etc.
  • Payroll taxes: including Social Security which is 6.2 percent and Medicare, which is 1.45 percent
  • Training costs: including initial and ongoing job training as well as compliance training for things such as Federal EEO Laws
  • Overhead: including office space, equipment, software and office supplies
  • Turnover: for employees earning a median salary of $45,000, the turnover cost is $15,000 per worker, according to Work Institute’s 2017 Retention Report

By comparison, when you work with an agency, they’re responsible for all of the above, and you only pay for deliverables.

Another concern with hiring in-house is finding someone with the skill set you need. A PR person is not necessarily a writer is not necessarily someone with video production experience is not necessarily a strategist or project manager. A full-service agency will have experienced professionals in each of these roles, and more.

For businesses who are wary of making the leap to outsourcing some or all of their marketing, it often comes down to relationship. They want to be sure the agency understands their history and company culture, is responsive and can handle any situation that arises.

Just as organizations vet potential employees for these qualities – and as they enhance them over time — they can look for an agency with a proven track record of building a trusted and valued partnership with their clients. When this happens, an agency can provide the best of all possible worlds.

How does your company measure up?

Posted by Albers Communications on July 3, 2019

We’re more than halfway through the year. How is your communications strategy doing against the goals you set for it? Or did you forget to set goals? Goals are different for each organization, but it’s important to have some benchmarks in mind as you set out to reach your audiences.

Even if you didn’t define any goals at the beginning of the year, it’s not too late to start. Here are a few simple, but useful, metrics to keep an eye on for the remainder of 2019:

Media impressions: Every time your organization appears on the news, in print, or online, there is a number attached to that placement indicating how many people viewed your news. A media monitoring tool such as Universal can help you easily track your impressions.

Your social footprint: Most social channels make it easy for business pages to see what kind of content is resonating with your followers. Posts with the highest interaction (likes, comments and shares) are the ones you should model as you continue developing content.

Email clicks: If you send an email newsletter, pay attention to not only your open rate but also your click-through rate. If you only post a teaser of a story in the email and make the reader jump to the full content on your website, you’ll easily be able to see what type of content your audience enjoys reading.

Website traffic: All of the metrics listed above work together and often lead back to your website. Your audience may visit your website after seeing a story on the news, or your social channels and email newsletters may link back to a certain web page.

These are baseline metrics that are relatively simple to understand and monitor. Next year, try setting your goals early so you can dive deeper into the analytics. Better yet, set your goals in Q4 2019 so you’re measuring as soon as the calendar flips to 2020. And if you need help, give us a call.

Prepping Your Company Spokespersons

Posted by Gina Pappas on May 13, 2019

Has your company’s leadership been formally media trained within the last two years? If not, now is the time for a refresher course.

Our team of public relations experts has media trained hundreds of spokespersons over our nearly 20-year history, making us among the most experienced media trainers in the area. We are pleased to offer an opportunity for local businesses to brush up on their media skills and feel more confident in their speaking abilities.

We encourage you to gather a group of team members for our one-hour Media Training Lunch and Learn. We will come to your business and provide lunch (up to 10 people), and two of our team members will present media training curriculum. The presentation is approximately 45 minutes, with 15 minutes available for Q&A.

Full, on-camera media training is also available via this format. If you’re interested, please contact us.

Is Your Marketing Fund Worth It?

Posted by Jenna Gallagher on September 20, 2018

Recently, I was speaking with a business owner who was part of a marketing fund with the other businesses in his development. He was lamenting that he was paying a lot into the fund but didn’t believe he was getting much value from it.  As a restauranteur, he delivers quality, high-touch content to his customers through social media every day — at a much lower cost and with far better returns than the one-size-fits-all marketing his development’s plan provides.

By contrast, over the years our team has worked with hundreds of franchise owners that are thrilled with their marketing funds. For them, being part of the fund has allowed access to effective, professional marketing strategies and implementation at a reasonable cost for a small business owner.

When used well, a marketing fund can be a tremendous asset to a group of businesses, whether they are part of a franchise network, or otherwise. Some of the advantages they can offer include:

  • Scalable pricing
  • A unified and consistent brand identity
  • Individual access to proprietary research and other costly resources
  • Step-by-step guidance
  • Professionally-created materials
  • Crisis strategies
  • Media training
  • Media relationships
  • Complementing social media strategies
  • More layers of accountability

Where marketing funds tend to fail is when they only cover a few bases. For example, they may be great with periodic events or initiatives, but fall down on day-to-day items like social media – or big things like crisis management. Or, they provide a comprehensive “PR in a box” strategy, but they expect the owner to have the time and the local media relationships to execute it.

In order for a marketing fund to work effectively, it’s key that everyone’s on the same page from the very beginning in terms of what it will do, and what’s up to the individual owners. Is there flexibility? Are the fees the same for all businesses, regardless of size and type? Is everyone getting equal representation?

It’s also important to assess what’s really needed from the fund. In the case of the restauranteur, for example, the development might assume all crises would be the responsibility of the individual businesses and therefore crisis management isn’t part of the fund. But wouldn’t they want a consistent, managed message if there was gas leak or another incident that impacted several businesses in their location?

Finally, the individual owners are an integral part of the process. They know best about their market and what their customers need or want, so their input should be part of every major decision (in the case of larger networks, this might be a committee of owners).

After all, if a marketing fund doesn’t work for the business owner, who is it working for?

Albers Gives!

Posted by Albers Communications on May 22, 2018

If you’re in Omaha and you’ve checked your email or been on social media at all this week, you’re probably aware that tomorrow is Omaha Gives!, the 24-hour, community-wide event that supports close to 1,000 nonprofits in the Omaha Metro.

As Kali Baker, vice president of community relations at the Omaha Community Foundation, which sponsors Omaha Gives!, explained to us, “This is a day when $10 really does make a difference. Because we award random hourly prizes and participation prizes for nonprofit with the most donors, even a small donation can be extremely meaningful to the organization you’ve chosen to support.”

All of the participating organizations are chosen because they make Omaha a stronger community, but here are some of our staff picks.

 

Emily

Food Bank for the Heartland

I support the Food Bank because they truly make a difference in the lives of hungry children, families and seniors right here where we live. I know my donation, no matter the size, can make an impact, because each dollar can provide three meals to someone in need.

Nebraska Wildlife Rehab

Our whole family has a passion for wildlife. The Nebraska Wildlife Rehab rescues and rehabilitates wild animals from all around our area, and their need is always growing. They are committed to education in order to create a world where wildlife is respected and treated with compassion. Because they do not receive any state or government funding, they rely on donations to support their important work.

Great Plains Pointer Rescue

Our family member, Penny, a German Shorthair Pointer, was rescued by this wonderful organization, and came to live with us in 2013. We continue to donate to this organization because they find loving and committed homes for all the dogs they rescue. Donations help provide full vet care from minor to major medical issues for dogs in their care as they await their new adopting family.

 

Gina

Omaha Home for Boys

This organization will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2020. Empowering at-risk youth to follow a successful path is a meaningful endeavor for Omaha kids.

Saving Grace

Beth Ostdiek Smith’s initiative to save perishable food and provide it to local shelters is genius. It eliminates food waste and ensures that those in need have a healthy meal.

Girls Inc.

As an all-women team, we are all about empowering the next generation of women to work hard. That starts with confidence, provided through the programming and outreach at Girls Inc.

 

Jenna

Omaha Zoo Foundation

In the years that we’ve worked with the Omaha Zoo Foundation, I’ve been fortunate to speak to so many employees of Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium – not only about the world-class animal care and exhibits at our zoo, but also their education program and wildlife conservation efforts that the zoo supports (and often spearheads) worldwide. A donation to the Omaha Zoo Foundation has a ripple effect that could reach all over the globe and well into the future.

Boys and Girls Club of the Midlands

I’ve gotten to know the Boys and Girls Club better through being on the Family Guild and I’m blown away by how many families this organization serves, the incredible programming and opportunities it offers students aged 6-18, and (maybe most of all) the dedication of the staff, some of whom have been working with the clubs for more than 30 years. They’re currently building and expanding several clubs in the Omaha area because the need is ever-growing, so it’s a great time to give.

Together, Inc.

Together, Inc. works to provide families and veterans in the Metro with the tools they need to achieve housing stability. Their approach is one of respect and collaboration to ensure that the people they serve have safe, affordable housing, food security, health and wellness. Right now in Omaha, it takes an annual income of $43,000 for a family of three to get by without any public assistance. To me, that’s an urgent reminder that any one of us, our family members, friends or neighbors, may now or one day need the services Together, Inc. provides.

 

Jordan

Youth Emergency Services

YES is the only organization in Omaha dedicated to helping the homeless and at-risk youth in our community. Having interned at YES during college, I have a special love for the hard work that they do to keep the youth in our community safe and to ensure they have the support and care that they need to succeed.

Nebraska Humane Society

Ensuring the humane society is equipped to shelter our lost and stray animals, to rehabilitate them, and give them a second chance is so important. Our pets are oftentimes an extension of our families, so knowing there is an organization out there that is dedicated to reuniting lost pets, or finding strays a forever home is comforting and vital.

First Responders Foundation

Giving to the foundation ensures that our first responders are always taken care of so they can continue their hard work of keeping our communities safe.

 

Laura

Mosaic

Mosaic is important to me because they have been tremendous support systems for my two intellectually disable brothers.  Both of my brothers were born with disabilities and are unable to live on their own. Mosaic has coordinated housing in a single home environment and employment/daily activities for them so they can lead as normal a life as possible.


 

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Albers Communications Group
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Omaha, Nebraska
(402) 292-5553 x9
info@albercommunications.com

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