Outsource or In-house? Learnings from the Content Marketing Institute’s 2018 report

To outsource, or do it in-house? This is the enduring question for many businesses who simply cannot hire full time employees for each and every function. Even the largest enterprises may outsource their software development to specialists or their advertising to an agency. For Small- to Medium-sized Businesses (SMB) and startups, the answer is certainly to contract help for at least some projects. Marketing is a commonly outsourced role, with content marketing being particularly likely task to outsource.

The Content Marketing Institute surveyed marketers across ten industry sectors to learn how the trends in content marketing strategy in 2018. Their research focused on the B2B sector, though many of the learnings apply equally to consumer-facing brands.

Content Marketing is a must

First of all, the report found that almost all companies surveyed were using or planned to start content marketing. There was an 18% year-over-year increase in companies focusing on content marketing to build their audience through various subscriber bases, like social following, email list etc.

0 %
of companies surveyed ARE currently or plan to start utilizing content marketing
0 %
of companies NOT planning to use content marketing cited team size or time constraints as the reason

Only 8% of respondents were not currently active with content marketing, and more than half of those (54%) planned to start within 12 months. Of this small group, companies said they were held back by personnel limitations – 67% said their team was too small and 44% said they lack the time. Only 15% of the 8% answered either that content marketing was not important or not needed.

It is clear that the vast majority of marketers are either using or want to be using content marketing in their overall strategy. They understand that content marketing is a must when you want your users to WANT to hear from you. It is essential to offer something valuable to draw their interest.


Around half of respondents have small or one-person marketing teams serving the entire organization. Meanwhile, more than half (56%) of respondents outsource at least one content marketing activity.

Most commonly, companies enlist help with content creation (47%) and promotion and distribution (23%), followed by measurement (11%) and overall strategy (9%). It’s no wonder that the creation and distribution are difficult to do in-house – when you have a small or one-person marketing team, what are the chances of having an expert writer, designer, video producer, social media strategist with media relationships?

0 %
of respondents' have small or one-person marketing teams
0 %
of companies outsource at least one content marketing activity

Agencies have all of these specialists on staff. At UpChannels, we can build a custom marketing department to meet your needs – whether that’s a full time social media manager or a part time graphic designer, a two-hour writing project or a full marketing strategy.

With such easy and flexible outsourcing options, there is no reason to be in that 8% who is not taking advantage of this powerful channel. Take a look at our Solutions or Contact Us for a consultation!

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