There is little question that a well-executed social media program will generate new business by engaging your customers, increasing your “Google rank” and turbo charging word of mouth. The real question is the classic make or buy decision. Should we do this ourselves? Or should we outsource it? I believe there are 5 reasons to outsource the “heavy lifting” of your social media marketing.
- TIME….Time hog number one is setting up your blog and linking it to your other social identities (Facebook, Twitter, etc.). This is not exceedingly difficult, but does require a focussed effort and for someone to learn basics and best practices around blogging and other platforms. There is absolutely a learning curve. If you outsource you are letting someone execute these basics who has done it many many times.
- TIME….Time hog number two is staying current with technical changes in social media platforms. New features are constantly added to Facebook, Twitter, WordPress. YouTube and the other key social media platforms…..someone needs to stay current, and that takes time.
- TIME….Time hog number three is creating content. The single most important key to success in social media marketing is the ongoing creation of fresh and relevant content. Without it, there will be no engagement, no “Google juice” and no benefit. There are countless examples of companies starting with the best intentions, getting setup, and then failing over time to continue to create posts and content. It takes time.
- TIME….Time hog number four is making sure that tagging and search engine optimization (SEO) tasks are being managed effectively. Whomever is creating content should be consciously working to make that content as findable as possible by Google and the various search engines.
- TIME….Time hog number five is metrics. Traffic, visits, comments, engagement can and should be measured. Part of an outsourcing program should be measurement and analysis to gauge program effectiveness and make adjustments.
Social media is a powerful new form of marketing for small and mid-sized businesses, but most run very lean from a staffing standpoint and the basics of a good social media program can absolutely be outsourced. This does not mean that you should wash your hands of active content development and participation—-it simply means that many of the tasks can be efficiently outsourced. In fact, your input on content should be a critical component of any outsourcing program. For an example of custom (outsourced) blogs that have been created for small businesses…take a look at the sample sherpa blogs section of this site.