To successfully run a business, the average CEO would put everything into proper perspective, prioritize essential aspects in the business, and set aside things that could be done later. This includes putting social media and other “non-essentials” on the calendar back-burner.
Successful businesses, however, are seeing social media in a different light. Many have seen and recognized the importance of social media as a useful marketing tool. This is driven by the fact that up to 3.8 billion people in the world make use of social media, prompting businesses to treat this platform as a valuable marketing channel.
That is why as much as 88% of companies in the United States participate in social media marketing. As much as 97% of the elite Fortune 500 companies have at least one social media network presence as a means to communicate with their advocates and stakeholders. The question remaining is: hire in-house social media marketing staff or outsource to an agency or a freelancer?
There are merits to either choice, so it is essential for business owners to consider these. The following discusses the benefits of why your business should outsource social media marketing and provide you with insightful tips on how to make this venture successful.
Why Should I Outsource Social Media Marketing?
Outsourcing business processes has always been a good and reliable operations model for many organizations, including up to 37% of small businesses. 34% of these small enterprises outsource their Digital Marketing processes, and emerging trends point to social media as one of the primary business elements that are considered for outsourcing.
The following tells us why.
- Social Media Marketing is a specialized business process that needs a higher degree of creativity and expertise to execute successfully. It involves a scientific process that enables your brand to connect with targeted audiences at a deeper level. It would be to your best advantage to have expert social media marketers handle all these for you.
- Social media marketing requires a higher degree of attention and time that your regular staff members may not be able to execute. Only 17% of mainstream companies have employees or staff who have the skills and the chops to conduct marketing operations – so better leave these in the hands of your outsourcing partner.
- An outsourced social media marketing campaign can provide your organization with the right marketing mix that can help you generate customer attention that’ll eventually lead to increased sales.
- Outsourcing social media in more cost-effective than having it done in-house. An in-house team for social media will cost more to maintain, not only with their salaries and benefits, but also in related resources like time, marketing expenses, and skills utilization.
- As much as 91% of retailer brands are participating in at least two social networks while up to 81% of SMEs joined at least one social network. This cuts across multiple industry verticals and markets. So, there is a possibility that your competitors have joined the bandwagon as well – so why not do the same?
How to Successfully Outsource Social Media Marketing
The following provides tips and recommendations that will help you successfully outsource your social media marketing:
1) Decide on Who You Should be Your Outsourcing Partner
Deciding on an outsourcing partner will depend on several factors: from your social media marketing budget to the type of social messaging that you would like targeted audiences to engage with. The following are your outsourcing options:
- Social Media Freelancers
If you plan to hire freelancers, select those who have considerable experience in Social Media Management, are knowledgeable in various channels and platforms, and have a proven track record that illustrates their effectiveness in this field.
- Social Media Agency
Agencies have a more established team or organization that can support your social media marketing needs. This includes formulating and creating content, planning, and executing social media marketing campaigns, monitoring, and analysis of results. It would be best to select an agency with a proven track record and successful results in the field of social media marketing.
- Social Media Enterprises
For larger companies with a bigger marketing budget, it would be best to work with a social media enterprise company to help you execute a massive social media marketing campaign. These corporations have the workforce and resources to strategize, formulate, and execute plans, monitor, analyze, and provide feedback about your marketing campaigns.
2) Choose an Outsourcing Partner Who You Can Trust
Outsourcing your social media marketing campaign to a partner or consultant is like giving the reigns of your branding to another person or company. It is but logical that you should choose an outsourcing partner who you can entrust the success of your brand, internet reputation, and online presence. So, how can you do this? How will you know whom to trust?
Neil Patel gives a practical suggestion on how you can do so, and that is to find out what your outsourcing partner’s previous customers are saying about them. Look and read through customer testimonials, business reviews, and reports. If possible, get in touch with these past customers and conduct your interviews. Rachael Samuels, social media manager at Sprout Social, recommends using the same qualification procedures you would usually execute when hiring in-house staff and apply them when selecting an outsourcing partner.
3) Brainstorm and Establish a Social Media Marketing Plan with Your Outsourcing Partner
After you’ve identified who your outsourcing partner will be, it’s time to get the ball rolling and establish a social media marketing plan. If your partner has done their homework, there’s a high chance that they will have a ready plan than they can propose. However, such methods may be based on a previous template they used.
This may be successful with another company or brand, but not necessarily have the same results with your company or industry. In any case, your partner should first have a clear understanding of your business, your goals, the messages you want to instill with your targeted audience, and the direction you would like them to take.
4) Aim to Establish Your Brand Voice
Audiences would most likely connect with brands, and how you establish your voice as a brand will spell how well your social media marketing campaigns will be successful. Each brand voice is entirely different from another and should beyond the usual calls-to-actions and subtle hints to sell a product or service.
From a funny or witty approach to an educational or informational style – each is different and will have different results. Your outsourcing partner should help you identify this voice, document everything about this voice, and implement such in your future campaigns.
5) Set Expectations and Deliverables Right from the Start
It would be best for you to set expectations and deliverables with your outsourcing partner right from the start of your partnership. Each social media platform behaves differently and brings out results in different ways, so this aspect should be taken into consideration.
Agree upon a specific set of deliverables on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis, and set parameters for both your internal marketing staff and your outsourcing partner – to set boundaries and responsibilities.
6) You Should Have an Arsenal of Useful Content that You Can Use
The success of any social media marketing campaign is hinged on how effective you create and make use of original, high-quality, and highly relevant content. You can have the option of creating such content in-house or just leave everything to the expertise in content creation by your outsourcing partner.
Social media is enormous and there is a lot of online real-estate to cover if you want to get the highest reach, connect with targeted audiences, and create a significant impact on them that will solicit fruitful engagements. This task can be done on your own. Still, it would be more advantageous to have an experienced and capable partner to lend you a helping hand – and finally get the social media marketing results you envision.
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