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The content outsourcing dilemma – hiring a freelancer or an agency

7 November 2017, mantran

The content outsourcing dilemma – hiring a freelancer or an agency

Content writing services are crucial for all your content marketing requirements and for most companies it is not possible to create all content in-house. A common dilemma you may face as a Marketing Chief is whether to outsource to freelancers at a lower price or to an agency at a higher price.

You and your company are bound to seek the best results, deploying your best marcom efforts, which should be cost effective and sustainable in the long run. Here are the 4 important factors we think you should consider before deciding whom to outsource your firm’s content marketing activities to:

The “Group Brainstorming” for better ideas at the agency

group think

As the saying goes, two heads are better than one. An agency has a think tank of brains that can ideate and generate ideas for all your content. Experienced marketing specialists guide the writers and provide inputs to create content to meet your objectives.

The freelancer works as a lone content service provider and has no soundboard for ideation, group think or course correction.

“Group think” is crucial for brands to bring about best ideas, contents and campaigns.

Content review and quality

Agency Internal Review process

Content quality is key to your brand. The agency has a well-defined review process internally. Content once written needs to be checked for language, grammar, keyword inclusions, suitable headings and sub-headings, and so on. Most importantly, the agency’s processes and experienced editors ensure that your content is as per your brief, meets quality guidelines, and is delivered on time.

A freelancer may not have somebody who reviews it, and the client becomes the reviewer, putting the burden of reviewing and improving the content on the client.

Review by experienced editors ensures quality and saves you time.

Consistency of messaging and brand voice


The agency is in a position to safeguard and maintain overall consistency for your brand. The tone, voice and personality of your brand’s messaging require consistent writing styles. Marketing Experts and Content Editors document the brand attributes and style to be followed for a client. All content is then written in the same ‘voice’ across all platforms.

Different freelancers with their own writing styles and understanding of your brand might dilute your brand voice. With a multiplicity of vendor engagement, you might feel a lack of consistency in the brand voice of  your content.

Consistency of message and brand voice communicates that the brand is reliable and dependable. 

Knowledge transfer and continuity

Continuity of services

A vendor (whether agency or freelancer) must know the company and market they write for. Outsourcing content to a new vendor involves explaining your company background, brand, target market, products and services. This takes time and the vendor has to imbibe this information, create a background document, and a brand guideline +  brand voice document. This enables the agency to offer continuity of services, besides content quality and consistency.  In the event a resource decides to leave in the middle of a campaign or a publishing calendar, the knowledge handover to the next resource is process-bound and other people in the Agency are also aware of the client’s business. A smooth, unnoticeable transition takes place, ensuring continuity of service with uninterrupted deliveries.

A freelancer quitting will require you to search for a new one. Hiring writers and designers often can bog you down, and should not be your major concern when working towards your larger marketing and business goals. The costs imposed by a break in content delivery, and the subsequent drain on your time, are costs that should not be overlooked.

An agency ensures continuity, saves you time, and mitigates the risk of project delays.


We spoke about hidden costs with freelancers, break in continuity, and risks to branding due to inconsistencies. On the other hand, a team of marketing specialists, content editors, experienced writers and search experts at an agency, drive your digital brand identity and communication plan to the next level.

An agency can take a holistic view of your brand, protect and promote your online reputation. Though hired at a higher price, it offers intangible and tangible benefits, and a higher return on investment (ROI) in the long run.

Are you still in  a dilemma or have you decided already? We hope you have resolved your dilemma on selecting the best content outsourcing partner? 

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