As marketers, we often unintentionally discount work done in-house to research, develop, and distribute sales enablement materials. After all, creating content to empower sales to talk to customers and close deals is just part of the job, right?

To a certain extent, yes, that is definitely true, but, lurking in the shadows is something that is often overlooked when determining the true cost and ROI of marketing materials: soft costs stemming from the internal manpower required to produce our one sheets and PowerPoint decks, our case studies and sales training content. Here’s a secret—a big portion of these hidden expenses comes from product managers, who spent up to half of their time working on marketing content, but usually do not have direct reporting status into marketing.

As a profession, we’re pretty good at figuring in external costs—they’re easy and fairly obvious—agencies, contract writers, translators, etc. But, no matter the size of the organization, there is a significant amount of brainpower, and thus, overhead, required to create sales and marketing content.

Recently, SiriusDecisions published a study that looked at the soft costs behind all of our content, and the findings are staggering. As it turns out, the average internal costs for B2B sales enablement content creation are significantly higher than external costs, especially for emerging and mid-sized organizations.

We thought this study was worth sharing to start the dialogue in organizations looking to go deep into their true ROI metrics. To help you digest the study in a shareable fashion, we’ve built an infographic that hits the high notes and boils down the salient points your organization should think about when calculating true marketing costs. If you’d prefer to look at the full SiriusDecisions report, you can see that here.

For what it’s worth, a sales enablement platform is one of the more straightforward ways to start figuring out the true costs of your content because it can close the loop across marketing, sales, and your customers by bringing content and data together to provide actionable information on what works, what doesn’t, and why. You can learn more about Highspot’s industry-leading platform in our short videos.

Does your organization consider soft costs from employee overhead in marketing costs? I’m curious—let me know in the comments below.