Agency -VS- Freelancer
We describe ourselves as "small but mighty"–or even better–"small by design" because these phrases represent a value we bring when we partner with clients.
While we purpose those idioms to compare ourselves favorably to larger agencies, they do represent very real themes that define just how different we are from the classic big agency. In the same way, a case should be made for how we, as a small agency, differ from the other end of the creative spectrum–independents or creative freelancers.
First, let us start by saying Columbus has some amazing freelancers. In fact, we often bring in the best-of-the-best when the needs of a client require a specific expertise outside of our own. However, we want to offer a nuanced perspective on how the small agency differs from the freelancer landscape out there.
Here is a (hopefully fair, but not exhaustive) list of pros and cons of working with a small branding agency team vs. an individual freelance creative:
More creative minds and varying perspectives can result in more holistic solutions
Diverse industry experience
Design specialty plus creative strategy direction
Full service account management
Standardized time tracking via client portal
Integrated writing services
Brand strategy & management
Broad array of capabilities
Activity projections & reporting
Easier communication and higher quality with less headaches
Workload able to be redistributed to meet deadlines incase of vacations or sick leave
Low overhead means able to take smaller budget projects
More likely to have the ability to work onsite if needed
More focused capabilities / specialties
Most likely mid to senior level
Design focused, tactical recommendations
Manually self-reported time sheets
Variable weekly fees based on workload
Talents / skillset varies based on individual experience
Experience varies based on individual’s specialties
Standard processes & client-integrated workflows unlikely
Client has to work with freelancers schedule (vacations, sick time, other clients)
Budget most likely higher than freelancer
Depending on relationship, ramp up and turn-around time could be longer due to collaboration needs
Less likely to be available nights and weekends
Less likely to have someone available to work on-site
Obviously we’re a little biased, but that bias comes from an honest perspective on being on both sides of the fence–or all three sides if you will (big agency, small “but mighty” agency, and freelancer).
If we’ve sparked any thoughts or additional questions, hit us up! We’d love to continue the conversation.