Back in the Facebook and Twitter infancy days, you could argue that the cost of social media marketing for businesses was “technically” free, but not anymore. You knew the thought of reaching 1,000’s of potential customers, for FREE, with the click of a button was too good to be true, right?
Of course it was! Now, Facebook wants you to pay just so your fans who willingly “liked” your page will see your posts in their News Feed. Translation: Your free ride is over! Twitter is so noisy that your tweets literally have a shelf life of 2 hours….at most. What was Twitter’s solution? Promoted tweets and hashtags! See the theme?
But, don’t let that defeat or discourage you. This does not mean you have to spend an arm and a leg on paid ads for each network! It simply means you have to up your game and invest the time and money it takes to do social media marketing right! You can’t expect to simply post links to your products and services or tweet about the features of your new Spring product line and think the web traffic will a come a flockin’.
If Facebook doesn’t want to show your posts before you pony up and you don’t have the budget for paid ads, you’ll need to get creative and roll with the punches until you find what works. In order to accomplish this, you will have the expenses of strategy development, content creation, account management and analytics. You’ll need a well-thought-out, killer strategy in place that was developed by professionals who know all the tricks! You’ll need someone who can generate content on a regular basis for all of this social sharing including blog posts, pictures, and video, as well as free offerings like eBooks and white papers. You’ll need someone to schedule the posts, manage each account and engage with your fans. And most importantly, you’ll need someone who can analyze the stats all of this generates, set and then measure goals and make recommendations for improvement.
These are not tasks that you want Suzie, your new intern, handling in between her filing duties and lunch. These are tasks that must be handled like any other marketing avenue — By a professional. If you already have someone in-house who is capable….AWESOME. Get started! But, in the event that you are like most small business owners and can’t afford a full-time social media marketing manager, hiring an agency like us may be in your best interest. Learn more about the advantages of outsourcing here.
So, how much does all this cost?
I’m sure you can see the answer coming from a mile away…It depends!
If you do everything in-house, your cost would be the hours that an employee spends at his/her current rate of pay on strategy development, creating content, maintaining engagement and analyzing the data. This can take anywhere from 2 to 40 hours a week and run you between $48,000 and $117,000 for a full-time, salaried employee depending on where you are located and how experienced the Marketer is. Don’t forget to factor in insurance benefits, 401K matching and paid holidays as well as software purchases, third-party services and training expenses.
If you want to partner with a reputable agency for these tasks and resources, you will spend a minimum of $1,000/month and possibly as much as $5,000-$6,000. Depending on where you fall on the spectrum, you are still way ahead of the game in comparison to hiring a full-time employee at a minimum of $48k/year or $4,000/month!
You will always be able to find those guys who promise to post 3 times/day to Facebook, 10 times/day to Twitter and 1 time/day to LinkedIn and Google+ for $400. But, you have to understand what you are getting for that price. I’m sure they DO post on our behalf that often, but posts that don’t contribute to driving traffic back to your website are just posts. If you’re truly interested in increasing your revenue as a result of social media (duh), you need to see the big picture and the importance of a strategy. Social Media Marketing has a lot of moving parts and posting to various networks is just one of those parts. You get what you pay for.
Some independent reviews of Social Media Marketing pricing:
But, be ready….these prices are not pretty and in some cases, absurd!
So, while these costs will vary depending on your specific needs, one thing is for sure…social media is here to stay and it must be done. You are understandably concerned with what this will cost your business…and you should be. But, perhaps the more important question is what will it cost you if you don’t get social?
Click Find Out! below and allow us to give you a more accurate idea of what YOUR business can expect to pay. We tailor our fees to what you need, not a bunch of fluff that we type out in a bulleted list and call the “Silver Plan”. In our eyes, no 2 businesses are the exact same, so out of the box marketing strategies just don’t make sense to us.