As someone who owns a social media marketing agency, I’m supposed to say you should always outsource social media marketing. The problem is I don’t agree.
There are many reasons why you should manage your own social. For instance, because no one knows your business better than you.
But if you’re not 1000% committed, you could be wasting a lot of time and money on your social media efforts.
We’ve got 10 signs that point to YES when asking if yourself if you should outsource social media marketing to someone else, plus the warning signs of DIY social that’s in trouble.
When it comes to spotting the warning signs for botched social media management, I often hear things like:
“How hard can it be?”
“I think it will be a great place to post our sales & marketing messages.”
“We’re going to use social media to increase sales!”
“We’ll be able to post often — except for trade show season — but other than that we should be good.”
Nothing raises my eyebrows faster than the four statements above. Why?
Because many companies enter the social world making three critical mistakes:
- We will post when we have time.
Read: This means they will likely post almost never. Or they’ll start strong and then that social page will be a ghost town.
- We will post what we want to sell (and get so many sales)!
Read: Our audience will never be interested in what we have to say/post.
- We’ll let so-and-so have two or three hours a week to dedicate to our social OR we’ll hire a free intern to take care of our social.
Read: We aren’t taking social seriously but will be SO CONFUSED when we don’t get serious results.
Does this sound like you? Read on if so.
Why DIY Isn’t Always The Best Option
Unfortunately, above thinking can lead to a world of hurt.
1) Social media is more than just branding, it’s storytelling.
What you say on social will have mere milliseconds to capture the attention of your audience. A logo and a pretty coupon for 20% off just won’t cut it.
2) Social media is not *always* about sales.
It’s about communication and relationship building, which if done correctly can lead to sales. Without two-way conversation and action, you will have an uphill battle on your hands with social. No one gets excited about social media posts that always seem self-centered.
3) Social media involves real-time marketing and response.
A whopping 89% of social media requests go unanswered by brands — which often leads to those consumers heading straight into your competitor’s arms. That means you can’t take a break from social because you had a weeklong trade show. Or on the weekends. It also means you can’t pick and choose which comments you want to respond to. People are waiting on you — and they want a response pretty quickly!
4) True strategy takes a keen and experienced social media manager.
If you think your high-school aged intern who’s unpaid can handle all of the above, plus work weekends and holidays … FANTASTIC! Go get ’em!
If not …
10 Reasons To Outsource Social Media Marketing
Whether you’re a Fortune 500 company or a teeny, tiny startup, you must have the coordination and command of the following:
- Strategy + business goals + key performance indicators (KPIs) = success. If you’re spending time on social, you better know how it’s improving your business. If you don’t, outsource.
- You need consistent brand messaging, no matter the platform. Your brand persona needs to be tightly defined and tie into your branding and messaging with tone and voice.
- Who, specifically are you targeting? What, SPECIFICALLY, do you want them to do? If you can’t answer SPECIFICALLY, outsource social media marketing and let the professionals nail that down for you.
- What will you post? How often? Remember, you can’t just talk about yourself! A content strategy is critical to continued success; social media professionals are superheroes when it comes to creating content in a publishing calendar. (Try our plug-and-play posts if you’re stuck)
- Collecting, recording, and storing data. Agencies often have access to state-of-the-art social media marketing tools.
- TIME. Many agencies and consultants have you covered during evening hours, weekends and holidays (we do!) Simply stated: Time is money and social media takes time!
- Testing is critical. If you don’t have the time or know how to do this, you need to outsource social media marketing to someone who does.
- Knowledge. While your person may know Facebook inside and out, do they know about Instagram, LinkedIn, or the latest algorithm changes affecting your brand? It’s not your job to dabble and see what works — when you outsource social media marketing to us, that is. 😉
- Advertising goes hand-in-hand with many social sites now. Without it, you’re wasting a lot of time and money (especially on Facebook). If you don’t have any advertising know-how, consider outsourcing.
- People and resources. Honestly, even our smallest clients have a team of people getting their social set up with something smart to say. Social truly takes a village.
What Our Clients LOVE
I can’t speak for every social media consultant or agency, but here are just a few reasons why our clients love to outsource social media marketing to us (see the kudos we’ve gotten).
- We’re worker bees. You may love sharing photos of what you’re up to, but do you love gathering data and compiling reports? We do. We take all of the poopy admin stuff and do with with a smile, on time, every time.
- You get serious bang for your buck. When our clients sign on with us, they automatically have access to graphic designers, top-of-the-line social media & marketing software, copywriters, certified advertising specialists, and the combined experience of each of our team members (some of who have MBAs and Ivy League educations).
- Working with us is not like hiring a Facebook expert who really knows Facebook inside and out but that’s it. Our clients get an Account Manager who has in-the-trenches experience with all of the major platforms and a team of experienced people behind them who have their back, and yours. That’s why you’ll see we just don’t offer services for some things (sorry, Snap’ers!).
- We build and work with a lot of hybrid teams.
- We have a ton of custom content just for our clients. We’re not into holding your accounts hostage; you learn and grow with us.
Speaking of big bucks, many companies are scared of the cost of outsourcing.
Again, I can only speak for us here, but with our pricing, “done for you” social media management costs less than one employee. And remember, you get an entire team of experienced marketers working on your campaigns … and they’re operating for you 365 days a year, holidays included.
Go out and try to find a “365-day employee.” I triple dog dare ya!
And when you can’t find — or afford — that person?
Outsource social media marketing to a team of people who are cost effective and work all year long.
To see if outsourcing social media is right for you or your company, you should check out reputable companies. Ask for examples and don’t be afraid to ask for references!
I (Brooke, CEO & Founder of B Squared Media) offer a free consultation if you think we may be the right fit for your online marketing needs. As we always say: A simple hello can lead to a million things!
Best of luck with your social media endeavors – outsourced or not.
What are your thoughts on outsourcing social media marketing to consultants or agencies? Let us know in the comments section below!
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Brooke B. Sellas is the in-the-trenches Founder & CEO of @HelloBSquared, an award-winning social media, advertising, and customer care agency. She's also the Co-host of The Marketing Companion podcast with Mark Schaefer, where they discuss jaw-dropping marketing trends. Brooke's marketing mantra is “Think Conversation, Not Campaign” so be sure to give her a shout!
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