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“I need to improve the marketing and communications for my organization. What are my options?”

We’ve heard this question for years and the truth is, hiring an agency might not be the best solution for you depending on your situation. We break down the pros and cons below.

Hiring an Employee


  • 20-40 hours a week of dedicated
  • Singular focus on your brand
  • In-office support


  • Only have access to their specific skill set. They may only have 1-2 main areas of expertise like graphic design + video, for example. Would need additional support or training to execute digital marketing, content writing, and social media strategy.
  • Difficult to hire and retain. Assuming you can find the right person with the right talents and personality, keeping them long-term can be difficult and expensive.
  • More expensive than hiring an agency in most cases once you factor in benefits, time spent in meetings, sick days, vacation days, cost of office space, maternity leave, bonuses, 401k, onboarding, and ongoing training.
  • Creative rust is a real thing. Based on our first-hand experience, folks that work on the same brand with the same branding 40+ a week struggle to improve and stay creative.

Hiring an Agency


  • Access to specialists in all facets of marketing/web development
  • Easy to hire and focused on serving you well to maintain your business
  • Cost-efficient – you only pay for hours used (or monthly retainer cost)

Cons (and how TwoTone responds)

  • Agencies typically aren’t quick or nimble enough to help week in and week out.
    • TwoTone has a proven process and project management system that we’ve built specifically to accommodate routine needs. We’re not just a logo shop. We’re focused on being a trusted partner for long-term and recurring needs.
  • Agencies are way more expensive and won’t fit into our budget.
    • You might be surprised to see the cost difference between our retainer model and a full-time employee. It is almost always cheaper to hire an agency and still get the best service.


Hiring someone in-house is definitely an option for many businesses, but there are hidden costs and limitations to that strategy. To get the most out of your marketing budget, a full-service team (at about the same cost as one employee) is the way to go.

Want some numbers to plug into your calculations?

Book a Free Discovery Call with us to talk about your needs and what a retainer would look like for you.

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