Most business owners understand the importance of a social media presence but often cite three reasons why they don't spend as much time on it as they should:
1. I don't have time to visit my social accounts every day
2. I don't know what makes a good tweet or update
3. I can't keep up with best practices on all the different channels
That's understandable! It seems like as soon as you get used to a social media channel, the company changes the rules. Just as you learn to construct the perfect update for one social site, everyone is talking about a new site that you just "have to be on." Once you get good at posting pictures on your social channels, suddenly it's de rigeur to post video instead.
It's enough to make any CEO throw up their hands in frustration and go back to print media forever. This is where social media management companies can help your business shine. Hiring a team of experts who live and breathe social media helps you avoid the frustration of staying current on the latest dos and don'ts and keeps your social channels running smoothly so you're free to run your business.
According to a study by customer relationship management vendor Constant Contact, small businesses owners spend as much as 33 hours a week on marketing activities. That's nearly the equivalent of a full-time employee! It's clear that outsourcing social media is a game-changer for anyone who wants to maximize their social impact without taking a toll on the people running the ship.
Even one social media channel takes a lot of time to run effectively. Here's just some of what goes into managing just one account:
● Creating an editorial calendar
● Writing the perfect update, sometime within a strict character count
● Responding to messages left on your timeline
● Replying to private messages from customers
● Engaging with other thought leaders in your industry
● Finding great re-shareable content to be a good social media citizen
● Frequent daily monitoring of the account to quickly respond to followers or customers
● Regular analytics reviews to determine the best content to post, what time of day to post it, etc
Now multiply that by the number of social media channels you have (or want) and you can see how quickly the hours stack up. The small business owners who responded to Constant Contact's survey report that their time is worth at least $273 per hour -- it's no wonder why so many see the benefit of outsourcing their social media.
In addition to the obvious cost benefit of outsourcing, don't underestimate how helpful it is to have someone monitoring your channels around the clock and on weekends. Customers can pop up with comments or questions at any time of day. When you hire a social media management team you can enjoy much-needed time away from your computer without worrying about what's happening on your Twitter or Facebook timeline.
Perhaps the biggest benefit to outsourcing your social media is the peace of mind of having one less thing to worry about. You can't put a price tag on that. You can rest easy knowing that if a social site suddenly changes up the rules or an important conversation springs up about your industry, the team is on top of it right away.
Many business owners say the key to success lies in delegating tasks to people who are experts in the field. When it comes to the nuanced world of social media, it's tough to stay on top of the avalanche of new ideas. Bringing a social media management company on board is the only "best practice" you need to know!
Image: Esther Vargas