Your company has been noticing that your competitors have begun to engage and communicate with customers and fans on Social Media and you are struggling to keep up with the demands of your business and the demands of your Social Media platforms, and you are ready to pull your hair out.
It’s time to hire a Social Media Manager.
The question is…would it be less expensive to hire an in-house employee to be your social media manager or should you hire an agency?
Many companies make the mistake of thinking that an in-house employee is the most cost effective and best option. This could be a costly mistake.
Here is why:
Employees cost more.
Your social media management employee will need to be a highly skilled individual, requiring a decent yearly salary. Let’s say, $45,000-$50,000 annually. You will then need to add a competitive benefit package, including health, dental and possibly optical. You will also need to consider the Government’s obligation for Worker’s Comp, which you are required to provide. This only sky rockets your employee’s original salary. Now you have added a nearly 30% (or $13,500) increase to that $45,000 because of these benefits. Your employee now sucks $58,500 annually from your profits.
Now consider the Social Media agency. When you hire an agency, you are hiring more than just one person. You are hiring a team of people who bring to the table a multitude of strengths, backgrounds, experience, skill sets, and ideas. This whole team is available to you for the fraction of the cost of your full time employee. It costs on average one week of that full time employee’s salary for a month of this whole team’s management. Possibly even less if you consider the fact those agencies often offer individual plans tailor made for your business. You may not need all the bells and whistles, for your business. Our company understands this and we are happy to price your plan accordingly.
Some may be tempted to just hire a college intern or an entry-level person to fill the void.
We advise against this; you get what you pay for. Your college graduate looking to intern to fill a degree will most likely find employment elsewhere after the internship has been completed, leaving you to hire, yet again. Your entry-level hire lacks experience, and wasn’t the purpose of needing a social media manager was that you were pulling your hair out trying to juggle your business? Go this route and you’ll be stuck training how to research, training how to use social media platforms, training on how to respond to customer concerns; training on how your business runs. More time wasted, is more money lost. Not saved.
There is no way your one employee has all the skill sets needed.
For a successful social media campaign you need the following: Content that is consistent as well as compelling, customer service that is on time with complaints as well as praises, a sense of community to drum up conversation and bring excitement, strategic planning based on analysis of data received and to be “in the know” as to what is upcoming and aware of every new change and update.
Content: This covers the writing of blogs, press releases, and upcoming events which can spill over into any flyers or cards these events may require. This also covers graphic art media; images and logos. Content may also include any videos you have as a company such as a commercial or a promotional video. This may also include any podcasts or speaking engagements your company has engaged in. Content is what you are able to share. Your company may not have ready-made items to share. It is the job of the Social Media Management to create this content consistently, with clarity.
Customer Service: Not all customers are going to like your company. Many will use social media and various industry specific websites (i.e. Yelp, Angie’s List, Urban Spoon) to bash your company name based on one experience they have had with your company. It is virtually impossible to make everyone happy 100% of the time, but a Social Media Manager worth their salt can defuse a situation before it escalates merely by having their thumb on the pulse of the comments and concerns of customers and being able to give suggestions or fixes immediately. On the other hand, a good Social Media manager should also be available to thank customers for their kind comments and remarks. If someone speaks to or about your company, positively or negatively, the manager should always respond.
Community Coordinator: It is the job of the Social Media Manager to drum up conversation on social media platforms. They should be asking relevant questions that encourage feedback. They should begin the conversations that show what your company Is all about, as well as tactfully removing people from these conversations that distract from the overall goal. The Social Media Management should have a grasp on how to build a following and keep that following going.
Strategic Planning: A Social Media Manager needs to be part Chess player, part sleuth. They need to know when to post, how much to post; what platform is best for what types of content. They know this by analyzing the data of what your company has done already mixed with what the industry trends are, and even what the trends on the various social media platforms are. They crunch numbers and research data, carving out a plan and then are able to change it, again, at a moment’s notice.
“In The Know”: A Social Media manager is a research hound. They are a news junkie. They read anything and everything they can get their hands on. They know when the social media platforms change, are able to respond to the changes and plan their content accordingly. They read articles, reviews, follow podcasts and videos, and comb through newsfeeds, Twitter and Facebook feeds. Their job is to find opportunities for the company to succeed and grow.
What’s listed here is just a tip of the ice burg as to what Social Media Management can do. Each one of these skill sets is different and could potentially be a full time job alone. As an agency, we have been asked to do more, and because we are skilled differently, as individuals, we are able to provide. If one person were to attack all these tasks, alone… the results would be mediocre, at best. Your company is not mediocre. Why should your Social Media Management be?
Kiss mediocre Social Management Goodbye.
Let us help you find solutions. Please give us a call at 828-708-7575 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
We are here to help you take the mania out of social media.