Should you be going with a subscription-based design agency

Design is a critical component of every marketing team's success. Whether you're a large marketing firm or a growing agency, having a talented design team is essential. From visually appealing graphics to impactful illustrations, the right design team can take your marketing efforts to the next level. However, finding a design team that meets your specific requirements and caters to the demands of your marketing agency can be a daunting task. That's why we have outlined the different options available for you to choose from, including hiring an in-house team, working with freelancers, using an agency, and subscribing to a subscription-based design team. In this blog, we'll be discussing each of these options in detail, including the pros and cons, to help you make an informed decision.

Hiring internally - The Classical Setup

Having an in-house design team was considered the best option for decades. In fact, it was the only available option until recent times.

Being able to afford an in-house team is a blessing, as you have designers at your disposal throughout the year. They deal with all the projects, either big or small. And cater to all the minute details. The best thing about internal hires is that they understand your mission, vision, and tone. They know all the ins and outs and do not need detailed briefs every now and then.

Hiring an in-house design team can be reliable, but it can also be quite costly and time consuming for companies, especially those in their early stages. In the US, the hiring process alone can cost around $4,000 and an experienced designer typically expects a salary of at least $80,000 per year.

Additionally, there are costs for providing the necessary equipment and design tools, as well as the time and resources required for managing and potentially supporting the team with a junior designer. All of these costs can quickly add up and become overwhelming. The lengthy hiring process, which can take up to 30 days, and the risk of employee turnover can also be drawbacks to consider when deciding whether to hire an in-house design team.

Designers are one of the most highly paid creative professionals in the marketing industry and they are taking leverage of their high demand.

·       Google spent $177,000/year on hiring and maintaining a designer this year.

·       An average designer in the US easily makes up to $70,178 per year.

·       Even a newbie in the industry is making around $50,789/year which is the avg starting salary in the US!

Freelancers – Luck or No Luck

The second option is to work with freelancers. This is the right fit for you if you only need creative work done occasionally. Freelancers are typically easy on the budget and can be a good solution for one-off projects. However, the biggest issue with freelancers is reliability. Freelancers are usually working on multiple projects at once, which can result in delayed timelines. Additionally, since freelancers are not trained on your brand's tone and guidelines, you should be prepared for the results to be inconsistent with your expectations.

Going Big with Agencies

The third option is to work with agencies. Agencies are ideal for one-time projects such as branding and web development. They are reliable and you can expect high-quality results from them. However, agencies can be very expensive and are not well-suited for regular day-to-day projects. Additionally, since agencies often have many clients, you may not receive the attention and support you need for your projects.

Subscription-Based Teams – The Perfect Balance

The fourth and final option is to work with subscription-based design teams. This is a very good option if you are looking to outsource your design work to expert teams. Subscription-based design teams are specifically built to handle your day-to-day tasks and you can expect high-quality results and speedy turnaround times. This option is also much more budget-friendly compared to hiring an in-house team or working with an agency.

So, who should be going with which option? If you have ample budget and time, hiring in-house is a great option. If you only need creative work done occasionally, freelancers can be a good solution. If you need high-quality results for one-off projects, agencies are the way to go. And finally, if you are looking to outsource your design work to expert teams and need a budget-friendly solution, subscription-based design teams are the way to go.


In conclusion, each option has its own set of pros and cons and the option you choose depends on your specific needs and budget. Whether you choose to hire in-house, work with freelancers, work with agencies, or go with a subscription-based design team, the most important thing is to find a solution that works best for you and your marketing agency.

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