How Much Time Should Your Business Devote to Social Media Management?

Tue, Sep 11, 2012


Every business, large or small, spends some amount of time interacting with fans and customers through social media. Those millions of eyeballs on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn and all the myriad of other social networks on today’s internet comprise an easy access to a mass market. Basically, it levels the playing field. You don’t have to be an international company to reach a huge amount of people, you simply have to have a great brand and a savvy online marketing department. All that being said, it is easy to waste time on social media. Not everything you do will lead to new clients or increased sales, and you can’t forget about all of the other revenue generating marketing options in favor of a full court press online. So how much time should your business devote to social media management?

Before you can come up with an hourly goal, there are some basic ideas you need to understand. First, know that the maximum impact of social media is generated not by how frequently you post, but what you spend your time posting. You might think that posting a regular blog will automatically generate a larger audience, but that’s simply not the case. If you’re just reposting information that can be found elsewhere, or if your posts are long and boring, they could have the opposite effect. You’d be better off spending all of that time designing a social media tool that’s innovative and eye-catching, even if it means only posting a fraction of the amount of content as before.

As with everything else involving marketing your brand, you must also be thinking first and foremost about who your customers are. Make sure that the things you do post make sense for your industry and fill a need with your consumer base. You can do it with humor, ingenuity or information, but it must be relevant to the people most likely to buy from you. If not, you’re just wasting your time.

So how do you determine how much time is enough to spend on social media management, and how much is too much? First off, what percentage of your business runs online? If you’re entirely online based and that is how you market, then you’ll need to scale up. In addition, is your audience spending a significant amount of time on social networks? If you sell homecare services for the elderly, chances are this is not the place for you. But if you’re promoting comic books, movies, surfboards, music or teen fashion, your time on social networks will be well spent.

Think of it as a slate of weekly tasks, and complete them as quickly as you can. Each and every week, you’ll want to spend some time with customer service, responding to questions or complaints. You’ll also want to tap in to the latest industry news and post your company’s stance on it. On top of this, at least once a week you should research and create a post that inspires your audience to engage with the brand. That means they comment about it, respond, like, or share it with their friends. And finally, each week you should spend time working on a larger, monthly post. So whether it’s a blog entry, a video, an app or a roundup of the latest news items, leave time for this as well. Depending on your business, you can probably achieve all of these tasks in less than five hours per week, especially if you ponied up for the best WordPress web hosting to help you along. Some weeks you’ll spend more, and some less, but if the difference is significant, take a closer look at how you are spending your time.

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