Since we formally announced the launch of this social media agency we call Ignite,we've been swamped with calls from companies asking how we can helpthem. Some have very specific questions and are well-informed on whatthey'd like to do. Others have an understanding that the social mediamarketing space is critically important, but they're not sure how itcan help them, how much it costs, etc. In this post, I'll try to givesome rough cost guidance.
First of all, asking how much a social media marketing campaignshould cost is a lot like asking how much an advertising campaign or aPR campaign costs. An ad campaign can cost $5,000 or it can cost$250,000,000. A PR campaign can cost $2,500 a month or it can cost$100,000 a month. So it really depends on two factors:
- How much do you need to do? and
- How much can you afford to do?
Social media marketing isn't for everyone. But it can work for lots oftypes of companies. And when it works for you, it works in differentways. So how much do you need to do is a question that we simply needto work through individually.
I told one company yesterday that they should probably allocatetheir budget in other ways; social media marketing wasn't going to betheir best ROI. I told another company yesterday that they shouldallocate a significant portion of their budget toward a few differentsocial media marketing efforts. There is no pat answer.
As for how much can you afford, that's a standard series of questions:
- How much is your marketing budget overall?
- What tactics are you using already and how are they working?
- What percentage of your overall budget should be redirected to social media marketing."
That might be 5% of your budget or it might be 100% of your budget.Again: it depends.B.L. Ochman has a good post on her site about general costs.In it, she says that you can do an effective campaign for as little as$50,000. And that she's done other campaigns that cost $500,000 forthree months.
That range seems about right to me. We can build you "tools" (sites,widgets, networks) for much less than $50,000. (They can also cost muchmore than $50,000.) But you can't really do a campaignunless you have a team out there working it properly. And while much ofsocial media is "free", time (whether it's yours or ours) never is.
The right answer very much depends on your situation. So take a lookat your overall marketing budget, your target audience and your goalsand call me or someone like me to figure out what's right for you.
If you're run your own campaigns and want to share rough budgetideas, feel free to talk about them in the comments section below.