Don’t rely on insider information

Companies have many reasons for trying to handle their marketing communications needs in-house. Sometimes, budget is the main reason, but a more common justification is the belief that nobody in the outside world could ever understand the company as well as its employees.

Hard to disagree — but it’s the very reason working with an outsider will offer your company a significant advantage.

Confused? Consider the fact that your marketplace doesn’t look at you through your eyes. They don’t view your company, your products, or your people through your viewpoint. They don’t see the intention behind what you’re doing or recognize the superiority of your current efforts over previous ones. To put it plainly, they’re pretty ignorant when it comes to what they know about you.

When companies make the mistake of assuming that their customers and prospects think the same way they do, they miss what those stakeholders are really thinking and what they need. They don’t realize that the dilemma that your staff grappled over for weeks is important. You’re proud that everyone internally reached a consensus on that key issue, but it matters not at all to the people who may buy what you sell. Your view of everything about the company is shaped by internal attitudes and concerns.

An outsider doesn’t approach your communications with all that baggage. He or she brings valuable objectivity to the process, being better able to point out how your audience might not come away with the same impression of what you plan to say. An outsider can ask tough questions that internal folks may be uncomfortable voicing. At the very least, he or she will bring a different perspective that just might keep you from inadvertently embarrassing yourself in the marketplace. You see, ignorance can sometimes be a healthy thing.