We can confidently say that 2020 until early 2021 were turbulent and unpredictable times for marketing agencies; clients and investors pulled out due to the pandemic, and people still adapting and balancing their work from home. All of these caused significant disruption to the standard operation models.
This forced marketing agencies to think out of the box to overcome those and many other obstacles to help them get back on their feet again.
But many experts at the time thought investing in advanced technology was the only effective way. But, to do so will require a lot of investments. And investing in advanced technology is costly — it will require a lot of funds. The ability to spend funds was a luxury that a lot of marketing agencies didn’t have due to the pandemic disrupting their business. They had to be careful with what they spent their funds on. So that they can continue to survive throughout the whole ordeal.
But a breakthrough of sorts happened; the emergence of marketing as a service, or MaaS; is a new way to access data-driven marketing capabilities without investing too much in advanced technology.
What Is Marketing as a Service (MaaS)?
Marketing as a Service or MaaS is an agile and tailored marketing solution that focuses on delivering on-demand and value-based marketing services; from strategy development and consultation to execution.
In other words, marketing as a service (MaaS) providers help fill in and cover the areas you are lacking in. For example, if you are struggling with Google ranking and lead conversion, SEO Solutions can help optimise your campaigns. Or if you are lacking in marketing assets, an agency can help you to create the collaterals.
MaaS helps fulfil your marketing needs and market requirements.
MaaS Key Takeaway
- Low-cost but deliver high-impact marketing
- Data-driven strategies
- Utilises new and latest marketing techs
- Adapts to the industries’ best practices
- Long-term solutions that can contribute to continuous growth
- Follows and adheres to the latest market trends and requirements
How’s MaaS Different From Other Operating Models?
But how is marketing as a service (MaaS) different from other operating models, such as in-house, freelancers and agencies? Here’s a comparison table highlighting the differences:
|Low and manageable. Only pay for the services you need
|High cost since involves salary and benefits payment, technology maintenance investment, and training.
|Economical and manageable. The payment amount will depend on the scale and duration of a project/job.
|High cost as the fee payment is per marketing functions; social media campaigns, website development, marketing automation, etc.
|Skill Set Range
|Wide range and a variety of skill sets because the team is usually made of industry experts.
|Limited and depend on your budget to hire the right expertise.
|Very limited since each freelancer has a different range of capabilities. Their knowledge of business or certain industries may also be limited. Affecting their delivery values.
|Limited to the services they offer and their team expertise. For example, if an agency has expertise in developing a website, then their skills would only be in that specific scope.
|Marketing Strategy Execution Speed
|Quick execution since they offer on-demand services. Their expertise is also readily available.
|Can slow to moderate speed; depending on the team size and resources that are available.
|Slow since freelancers have limited capabilities because they usually draw from their resources.
|Fast and efficient execution because most agencies have built their expertise around a particular marketing function
|Access to Marketing Technology
|Will provide immediate access. MaaS will usually bring a proven and quality tech stack to accelerate your digital transformation.
|Limited access. Depending on resource availability.
|Very limited because they are working independently and rely on the technology resources provided by their employer (if any)
|Adaptability to Market Needs
|Good adaptability since MaaS usually have a team that is agile and attuned to current trends.
|Low adaptability, because it will require a lot of resources to retrain or reallocate.
|Their adaptability level depends on their knowledge and familiarity with business practices.
|Limited, because retainers are based on a fixed scope of work. In addition, contracts also make it hard and difficult to shift resources.
Why Should You Use Marketing as Service (MaaS)?
If there’s an area that you are struggling to fill in, it is probably time for you to adopt and use MaaS as one of your operating models. And if that still doesn’t convince you, here are for reasons or benefits of why you should start adopting the marketing as a service (MaaS) operation model for your business.
Allows you to spend on more strategic initiatives and actual growth
In 2018, the statistic shows that only 37.5% of SMBs (Small Midsize Business) considered their marketing efforts to be successful, while the other 45.9% considered efforts unfruitful and ineffective. This probably stems from two reasons; too focused on execution instead of strategy and not having strategic capabilities on the team.
The first reason is that it does provide businesses with quick wins, but such a way is unsustainable, and without having strategic capabilities on the team, means you don’t have a solid plan. To succeed in today’s B2B marketing landscape, you will need data-driven insights from experts and solid plans.
And marketing as a service (MaaS) can do both for you; bring world-class strategies and execution to the table for you. This will free up your internal team, allowing them to work on more manageable projects or tasks. In addition to that, you will only be spending on the services or capabilities you need and receive continuous quality results which will contribute to growth.
Lets you scale the marketing needs and continuous growth
If you have been long in the B2B landscape, then you would know how competitive it can get. You are expected to deliver stellar results. Which can be difficult at times when you have to maintain operation costs at the minimum.
However, adopting marketing as a service (MaaS) as a part of your will give you the power and ability to scale your marketing for less than in-house. Letting you support additional marketing initiatives or projects.
For example, if you have a launch campaign for a new product or service, MaaS will help you to shift your resources quickly and painlessly. But adopting and employing the MaaS operation model is not a short-term solution, so if you’re looking for a solution for quick wins or a one-off project; MaaS is not the answer and solution. MaaS is more suitable for a long-term solution for businesses; because it is a partnership that is built on the common and shared goals of continuous growth and building a business that is more data-driven, flexible and agile.
Helps you adapt to changing business needs in real-time
It is a fact that it is important to stay on top of marketing trends, but with how fast the marketing trends are changing, it can be difficult to adapt to the trends changing in real time. Because it will involve a significant amount of time, energy and cost just to develop a new strategy that adapts to the new trends.
However, with a marketing as a service (MaaS) provider partnership, you don’t have to worry about those matters. Because they are usually already attuned and well-versed with the latest trends because it is part of their best practices and business models.
They will help you to get ahead of the curve once given access to the latest tools and infrastructure.
Helps your marketing team direct their focus towards company growth
Another reason to start adopting marketing as a service (MaaS ) is that it will allow your in-house team to take up and manage more meaningful tasks, for example, maintaining brand consistency across all platforms and products.
In other words, your in-house team will be able to develop more strategic initiatives for your brand because they are no longer overburdened with executing marketing campaigns. In addition, this also allows your in-house team to focus on their core responsibilities.
This also opens up the opportunity to focus more on customer service and aligning marketing goals with sales. For example, now you can engage and address customers’ requests, concerns and questions.
MaaS, The Next Step in Marketing
If you feel that the efforts you made have been ineffective in lead generation or found your in-house team struggling to produce effective marketing assets, then you will want to take a step back and reevaluate present situations. It is also probably a sign that it is time for you to consider a different and more effective operation model; marketing as a service (MaaS).
By adopting marketing as a service (MaaS) as a partner and operation model for your business, you will have a team that fills and cover the areas you are lacking. Thus allowing your in-house team to focus on what they do best and their core responsibilities.