Most business endeavors wind up being much more complicated than initially expected, simply because there are so many steps involved in founding, managing, and promoting a company. When you’re drawing up the plans and envisioning how things are going to play out, you see yourself handling most of the work in the beginning. However, as your startup continues to expand, you’ll eventually need an extra hand or two.
Hiring salaried or full-time hourly employees is a common mistake made by startups. Instead of committing to excessive payroll overhead or putting all the burden on your own back right out of the gate, consider the advantages of taking an outsourced freelance approach instead. Here are five kinds of common jobs and tasks that should be outsourced if possible:
Virtual Chief Information Officer
If you’re not familiar with the role of a virtual chief information officer (VCIO), you may be wondering why you would even need someone to fill this position. There’s certainly no requirement to hire a CIO on the first day of business, but once scaling up becomes a priority, you should definitely put your data analysis and information systems in the right hands.
The good news is, like the other jobs on this list, the duties and details associated with this position can be remotely allocated to a virtual employee. The ability to hire and collaborate with a VCIO from anywhere in the world not only gives you a vast selection of candidates and the advantage of currency rate exchanges, but it also keeps you from having to pay rent/mortgage for an official place of business.
Web Content Writer
You might think to yourself, “I’m a good writer so I don’t need any help with this area of my business.” Even if you’re the greatest writer in the world, there will always be a limit to the number of words you can sustainably produce on a daily basis. Most new online business owners don’t realize that the internet is a numbers game – the more content you put out there, the easier it is for prospective leads to find you.
The problem is, you’re not going to receive a magical notification that prompts you to start hiring writers and upgrade your content output. You simply have to make the choice to bring writers on board and ramp up your content production and distribution game. Initially, you’ll be spending funds on content and not seeing much of an immediate return. If you stay persistent and consistent with the volume and quality of content you’re putting out, after a few weeks to months, the benefits will become apparent in retrospect.
Learning and performing search engine optimization (SEO) yourself can be a lengthy and challenging process. Hypothetically, you could spend a week or two learning SEO and have a basic grasp on how it works, but you still wouldn’t have the skills and expertise of a trained SEO specialist. Unless you plan on specializing in this area of online business management, it’s best to go ahead and outsource SEO-related tasks to a professional.
SEO can be either expensive or cheap, and you don’t always get what you pay for. Generally, SEO services are provided in packages that are either subscription-based or one-off projects. Start with an affordable provider who has a solid reputation and portfolio. Whether you choose to outsource SEO or not, it’s definitely a job that needs to be done by someone if you want your business to rank well in Google.
Social Media Manager
If you’re trying to facilitate exponential traffic growth, social media marketing (SMM) is easily one of the top options to consider. In fact, some would argue that having a widespread social media presence is absolutely essential in today’s Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube-centric world. The three aforementioned sites are responsible for a huge chunk of the overall traffic that circulates around the web every second of every day. Thus, if you fail to put effort into your SMM campaigns, you’re missing out on the lion’s share of traffic generation opportunities.
Is SMM more important than SEO, you might ask? It’s safe to say that they’re equally important, Google and other search engines incorporate social media signals into their ranking algorithms. Unfortunately, staying active on social media can be a distracting side job to have. Outsourcing this job to an SMM expert will ensure that all metrics are being optimized without consuming your attention.
Lead Generation & Marketing Specialist
Marketing and lead generation are other essential jobs that every company can benefit from. You can find plenty of freelancers that will take care of your company’s marketing strategy and proactive lead solicitation. Think about it this way: you can sit there trying to generate new leads all day and not have much time for anything else, or you can just pay someone a set amount per lead and have the free time you need.
The great part about hiring lead generation is that there many service providers that only charge you for the lead after it has converted to a paying customer. While you may need to pay a deposit to initialize the lead generation services, funds are only taken from your account balance when a lead has been generated, so in the long-term, lead generation reduces your profit-per-transaction, yet increases overall profits by driving up volume.
Freeing Up Time for Executive Innovation
In closing, the primary reason why you’d want to outsource the job above, or any job for that matter, is to give yourself the time needed to focus on mission-critical innovation. As the owner or manager of a business, your goal is to steer the company in the right direction.
If you’re too pre-occupied with menial, tedious, and time-consuming tasks, you won’t have a lot of time to come up with creative solutions and ideas to drive the business forward. While outsourcing can increase your payroll expenses, it can also dramatically boost profits and growth in the long-term, so it’s worthy of investment.