Taking back control and removing uncertainty is every business's dream and so far, in-housing could be the perfect solution.

  • 91% of brands have moved at least part of their digital marketing in-house.
  • Greater control, cost efficiency, and increased transparency are key motivators for brands taking elements of their business in-house.
  • A study by the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) in 2018 found that 78% of their members had formed an in-house agency, and 58% of these had been created in the last five years.

In-housing aims to simultaneously simplify whilst expanding a brand’s marketing strategy. It is about providing the right message, to the right people, at the right time through a smaller team so that the customer journey is fully understood and effectively delivered upon.

However, it is not this black and white for every brand, not all businesses that made the move in-house have experienced success. Not too long after announcing they were taking their programmatic in-house, Vodafone had to confess they were going to backtrack on this after encountering challenges.

In-housing should be seen as a spectrum, as the level of work taken in-house can vary greatly with differing levels of success. For example, Unilever has reported savings of €500 million since creating more content in-house. Brands like Lego, Revlon, and Duracell have followed suit by taking more control and starting the process to set up their own in-house agency.

What are the main benefits?

Marketing managers and CMOs understand the difficulties involved with tracking marketing spend and ROI, as their level of command over spend is lost once outsourced. As a result, they want more control over their digital spend to ensure they are correctly measuring performance.

By bringing their advertising in-house they will gain accountability over things like programmatic spend, meaning more insight can be gained over the cost of media and the reasoning behind why an ad was served on a certain page.

However, these benefits are fruitless if the correct team is not formed.

An in-house team is a long-term, crucial investment for a brand and will require time and money to gather. However, the results from a high-quality team will quickly outweigh the initial investment. With the right team, understanding the business’s costs and metrics to identify the worth of marketing strategies becomes that little bit easier, now that they can compare, analyse and work across different channels independently.

Aside from an impressive team, technology is also the answer to making in-house advertising a reality, for example, a business’ ability to do programmatic internally.

Digital ad production is a common area that is changing the way brands work thanks to in-house technology. The development of creative management platforms (CMPs) allows brands to create complex digital campaigns across multiple markets from one editorial location. These platforms mean production time can be reduced by weeks which would eliminate costly repetitive tasks and provides more real-time performance data. This technology is offering in-house teams the opportunity to produce and control multi-channel campaigns with complete transparency.

The shift to in-house advertising is gaining momentum, and brands with nothing to hide should relish the opportunity to be more open and honest within the business, as with this, comes the opportunity to be more confident and ambitious.

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