Episode 4

In this episode of the Outsourced Marketing Department Podcast, Ryan W. Gates is back with Bruce Rowley of RSM Marketing Services on how to get the most out of your OMD. How do you get the ball rolling? What do the first 30 days look like? How do you keep the momentum going? When to scale up and when to hunker down? Listen in as Ryan and Bruce talk about setting your OMD up for success, past experiences in OMD success and how to get the highest value from your OMD.


Welcome everyone to the outsource marketing department podcast, I’m your host, Ryan gates. If you’re new, thanks for joining us and if you’re returning, then welcome back. Today we’re back with Bruce rally to talk about how to get the most out of your OMD or outsource marketing department.

Bruce is the co-founder of RSM marketing services in with an entrepreneurial company specializing in outsourced marketing with clients across North America. Let’s listen in…

So Bruce welcome back, it’s fun to be talking with you again.

Thanks, Ryan always good to join you here in Guantanamo again.

Now, we were just talking about, it’s flu season, it’s cold season and the ability to go and attack things early. So I wanna take that and flip it and talk about an OMD. What are some of the key things that you can do early on, day one to make that OMD start working for you right away?

Well, some of it is just really basic blocking, tackling. Lots of clients that we work with we may spend two or three weeks just going back and forth, getting passwords and logins and things like that. And I think it is important to work quickly right up front to make sure that we have all the tools that we need to be able to do the absolute best work that we can right out the gate for you that’s point number one, and then what number two is a having to sit down, what we call a kick off, and in the kick-off is it’s really a discussion about what does success look like. That’s really the way I like to phrase it to clients instead of, what are our… We could say what our key objectives or anything like that, but really I just wanna be able to have somebody paying a much broader picture for us of six months, nine months, 24 months down the line, we’re sitting here. What does success look like at that time?

Sure, I have to manage it is also, it’s good to be able to figure out some immediate successes, and I would just say, Okay, we’re gonna turn this faucet on, and all of our marketing woes, are solve

Absolutely getting quick wins, up front looking for the low-hanging fruit is really important. It’s of course not just important for us to be able to justify our value right away, but I think it also builds confidence throughout the client’s organization that, whether it’s through their operations people, their salespeople, if they have marketing folks, their marketing people can see right away that we’re a force for good and right away, we’re able to deliver them all some quick wins. It’s amazing how that put some wind at your back. Right away.

Absolutely. Well you gotta take a certain bite to eat an elephant, right? What waas it… How do you eat an elephant?

One bite at a time.

Well, in lots of our client’s design we have a massive amount of a range of tactics that we can do, and one of the things that been driving the outsource marketing department concept is the fact that there are new tactics coming out every month. And I, I would say every year, there’s at least two or three new tactics that are not even cutting edge, that they are becoming cost of entry. The kind of stuff that you have to do, you can’t ignore. And so what that means for a lot of clients is when they first show up in our program, they have a long list and everybody wants that hole is to be done in the first three weeks. But often times what we have to do in the beginning is sit down and talk to… Okay, let’s talk about some of the quick wins but let’s also talk about the building a strong marketing Foundation that then allows us to take advantage of all these tactics, rather than just running around willy-nilly and just deploying those tactics. Let’s make sure we have a singular strategy. Let’s make sure we have a clear funnel. Let’s make sure that we have a great platform in the form of a website that converts.

Yeah, and this comes back to what you were just saying about what does success look like to you? Let’s establish what success looks like. Let’s talk about that from a strategic standpoint and then use tactics, to go through and implement it.

So you’ve had a lot of OMD relationships over time, what are some of the key factors that you have seen? Give me three key factors that have lent themselves to successful OMD relationships.

Well, there’s a combination of them. One thing is I would say fearlessness and clarity are really important. So by that, don’t be afraid to admit what you don’t know, don’t be afraid to share what you do and make sure that we are as open as we can with each other from the beginning, about what we know, what we don’t know and what we don’t know, we don’t know which is often the scariest part. So if we can get things started really clearly like that, that leads to the best kind of relationships where we’re able to have very valuable clear conversations that can immediately turn into tactical plans that can be executed and when the client is very clear on that. As well, they can then take that back into their organization and make sure that all the aspects of their organization that have to plug into this plan are clear about it as well, because oftentimes, the work that we do, it plugs into their customer service, it plugs into their product and production, it plugs into their finance organization and their sales organization. Many different parts of the client’s organizations have to have a clear understanding and buy-in of what we’re trying to do in order to truly maximize the effectiveness of marketing.

Sure, yeah, and talking about clarity, absolutely conversation leads to that clarity. But as an inbound client. I wanna make sure that I’m utilizing my time. Well, I’m paying for time as I’m outsourcing so I wanna make sure that I have meetings that are substantial that aren’t just conversation, I wanna have things that take actions, ’cause how often am I meeting in an OMD what does that look like?

No, great question. So action is one of our fundamental values, that RSM. Candor action and curiosity. And they really feed each other. So action is key. Just yesterday, I was in a cosmetic with a new client, and what we laid out in that meeting was, “Here’s what you bought off on “Here’s what we understand your vision is, here’s what we believe future success will look like. And then that led immediately into a recommendation of what our 30-day the plan is, and immediately tied to that. What are some of the 30-day when… So as not with, “I can expect to achieve over the next 30 days, now time will tell because the very next step with that client was, Okay, now you need to give us all of we need digital assets, your logo, we need logins to social media and your website and all that kind of stuff. And I have a great feeling about this client, because at 8 o’clock this morning that client was back to us with everything we need, and I gotta tell you, our team loves that when they feel that the client is running as fast as they wanna run. Man, that’s when it really, really works.

So talking about this communication and gaining a client involved, who on the client side in these successful relationships of OMD you’ve seen the past who is that point of contact is it, is it a singular person, is it a head of marketing, is it an entire group? Obviously, it’s gonna very client the client, but what do you… What have you seen that’s had those successes?

Well, one of the things we try to avoid is a tragedy of the commons it, so you have to have a person who is responsible. So we always understand who that is on the client side. So that could be the owner, it could be a director of sales, it could be a director of marketing. Actually for one of our clients, it’s their CFO, so which I find fascinating and I love working with that client because they have such a… Because the relationship on their side is driven by the CFO, with very clear understanding of financially, what does success look like, what are the margins on various products or services that we are choosing to market or not, based on insight from the CFO. On our side, we have an account or a marketing director, assigned to every single client, and so, that marketing director well-assisted by a marketing coordinator and more than two dozen other team members here in many cases, that marketing director is the key point of contact for that client.

So are there parts of an MD as we talk about strategic and tactical? And so, getting involved in that strategic level and then diving the tactical are there elements of an OMD that don’t make sense to outsource. There are parts of it that you’ve seen bogged down a project when it could continue at a faster clip.

Sure, you know, I don’t think that it’s driven by a particular tactic or not, but it’s, it’s driven by a particular situation. I often tell clients. Look, we’re only gonna go where we’re invited and we never wanna fight you for turf for space. So in some cases, a client may have a resource on their team that’s really good at the one thing that they do one or two things. Maybe they’ve got a web designer on staff who really loves to do all those web its and to handle all that stuff. Great, we don’t wanna fight over that and sometimes I think that can get confusing. So one of the things we try to do right up front is understand, “Hey what are the parts that you guys wanna do and what are the parts that we’re gonna do?” That happens a lot in social media as well. Oh well, if we take over the social media, then they won’t be able to do it. And of course, what we’re fond of saying, the clients is in social media, particularly platforms like Facebook or Twitter, or Pinterest, take your pick. There are certainly room in those channels for us to share in them, and do what we can do and for the clients to continue to do what they naturally wanna do in those channels. We just have to understand which side of the road are you gonna be on which side of road? Which lane are we all gonna be in so that we don’t have collisions?

There’s a lot of toys in the sand box.

So here’s a question, you’re talking about playing in that sandbox. So things are going well for a company and… And you’re growing and you have an opportunity where you can grow further. Do you bring on another full-time employee, an FTE or is this an opportunity to outsource more to your OMD the common?

That’s a softball.

Well, were talking about you want to get the most over. And so, the value is a big thing. And am I gonna pull value from internal or external?

Well, I’m very biased, but of course I believe at my core, having been on the client’s side, having run companies having been on the agency side for many years, I am convinced that it is economically a far better solution to outsource. We are able to sell it by the hour, across this huge range of people, so that you’re really getting the topic experts in every single little area, so you’re not only getting a great quality of work, but these people are oftentimes even far more efficient than an in-house person can be. It is amazing to me the things that we’re able to accomplish for clients at rates at subscription rates that are a very similar or the last than what a company might pay for a single FTE. They get a dozen different experts working on their business, every single month and it changes every single day, right? Tuesday you need somebody doing web edits and posting social. On Wednesday, we might be shooting video and Thursday were writing blogs and Friday we’re sending out text messages on mobile phones. Underneath all of that somebody’s managing ad words and a YouTube pre-roll ads, and each one of these things is done by somebody who’s an absolute expert in that area, and it is highly focused on not just doing it fast, but doing it at their best.

It definitely seems it’s for growth, look at outsourcing for individual roles, but personal assistant specializes within the company. Maybe that’s the FTE type place. Final question for you, as we talk about how to get the most of the OMD you’ve got a company that’s going in a direction and you decide after a few months, you wanna switch it up. You wanna change things, you wanna change things around, drastically. What is the… How much check-in is expected in an OMD and what does that look like when you say You know what we’ve been doing all of this. Halt. Let’s pivot, let’s now go this way.

But I we meet with almost every single one of our clients at least every other week, most of our clients, we check in with them every week. In fact, one of the things we tell clients is, Look, if you’re not willing to commit at least 30 minutes to meet with us every week to just check in, then you probably don’t wanna spend the money on this. And those check-ins are not just… Hey, let’s look at layouts or anything like that, that kind of daily transactional kind of work happens online, most frequently. Those 30-minute discussions are just that. Really working sessions to try and understand from their side, what are they… What kind of feedback are they getting from their customers, from their team, from the market. Thankfully I can’t say I’ve had any meetings where a client says, Well we’ve just completely decided out of the blue to change things. Have we made sharp right or left turns, absolutely, but they were not a surprise, they were in… It’s very much a part of it.

Well Bruce, thank you so much for talking to me today.

Always a pleasure.

thanks for listening to another episode of the outsource marketing department podcast. Your source for all things OMD. If you have questions over the topics cover today or suggestions for a future topic follow the link in the description of this episode.

I’m Ryan gates and I’ll see you next time.




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