This is a question that anyone who works in social media will have heard many, many times before. And anyone who has looked for social media management will have wondered about the answer. Unfortunately, there is no one easy answer or average cost – it is dependent on a lot of factors.
To put it as simply as possible, the cost of having someone run your social media depends on what you want to get out of your social media. No one likes to talk about money and this means that often there is a gap in communication and understanding about what something as broad as ‘social media’ can cost – and what it ‘should’ cost.
Let’s break down some of the things that have to be taken into account when pricing a social media strategy:
Firstly, what social media platforms do you want to utilise for your brand? Nowadays the Facebook, Instagram, Twitter trifecta is pretty standard, but there are plenty of other platforms that you might also want to updated regularly – such as YouTube, TikTok, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr, Snapchat, and more.
Here it comes down to your brand. If your consumers are on some or all of these platforms, you probably should be too. Therefore, it is important to know where your consumers will expect to find you, where they would be likely to connect with you, and thereby which platforms you need to be active on.
What this means for cost: running three social platforms is less time consuming than running four, or seven, or ten! It is not just about producing content for those platforms, but also the added time for responding to comments, DMs, and other interactions on all of the additional platforms that will be considered when putting together a quote.
Content is a tricky area when it comes to costing a social media strategy. It depends on a few factors: how much content do you want going out there, how much do you want to be produced versus how much will be provided, and how much can feasibly be released. Some brands may be providing content that just needs to be scheduled and published (e.g. brand photos, estate images, event photos etc.), while others may be looking for content to be produced.
What content production (whether the social media manager is given content or producing it) requires most of all is communication with a brand. If there is communication regarding what information should be going out, what the brand message is, and what content is accepted (and what is not) then it is easier for everyone involved!
What this means for cost: When it comes to costing content it dependent on the content provided. If you are providing content then it is easier for a social media manager to post content, whereas content being created may cost you a little more. It is up to the brand as to what they want – although a social media manager can only post if there is content available and if there is communication about what should and shouldn’t be posted.
This is the most important factor of all. As mentioned above, the way that social media is managed is dependent on what you want to get from your social media. What is your aim?
- Do you want to bring customers to your guesthouse or wine estate?
- Do you want them to go to your website?
- Do you want them to buy a product from you?
- Do you want them to engage with you, and with other consumers on your social media?
Once you have established the goal of your social media then content practically writes itself (of course, it doesn’t, that’s our job!).
What this means for cost: the goal of your brand’s social media helps to form the content that will be posted there. It also helps to dictate how much content is needed and when it should be posted.
If, as a basic example, your social media goal for this year is to increase online sales orders from your website during the week then your social media will reflect that. Posts will always contain a link to your website and will be published on weekdays, specifically around the times that your analytics show that your followers are more likely to be online.
If you just want to keep general engagement and brand awareness up then posting a few days a week is all you need, while if you are looking to build awareness for an upcoming event or sale, you might want to be posting more often.
Looking at all of these factors together will start to show you how much this might cost you. Not in monetary terms, but in ‘how much social media do I need’ terms. If you are looking for a social media manager to post pre-made content three days a week on Facebook and Twitter, you will probably be looking at paying a little less than someone who wants two posts a day of curated content across five different platforms.
How much social media management costs can vary a lot. It is best to approach the question how much do you charge from a place of understanding – know what you are looking for, know what you want your social media to do, and then discuss that with a potential social media manager. Every case will be different!
Need some help with your social media? We can help. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com for more information.