How Much Will Social Media Cost Me?

It’s time to come to terms to something here when it comes to social media cost:

Social media isn’t cheap if you want it done right.

Yes, of course, all the social media platforms are free. It is free to make a twitter account, Facebook pages, LinkedIn accounts – making the account is free. But, what a lot of people forget is that social media takes time. Lots. Of. Time. And time is money.

Back in one of my previous articles, “Do I Really Need Social Media” I said that the basics that you really must have is a website and a Facebook page. You need to make sure that website is up to date. If you’re using WordPress, that involves logging in a few times a week. You want to make sure your plugins and WordPress installation is up to date. If running a physical store, you want your prices and services to be accurate.  However, if you’re running an online store, your website is even more important. You need to keep stock up to date, and always be watching your traffic.

On top of your website, you’ll need to keep your Facebook page updated. That involves coming up with content to keep your audience interested. It might be as simple as promoting a weekly sale. However, you can also be creative and make content that keeps your audience engaged. Pro Tip: You want to be making that creative content. You have a lot of competition out there – make yourself stand out.

Then, on top of that, having a Twitter account is a really good idea. I didn’t talk too much about Twitter on my previous post because it’s one of those platforms that people either love or hate. However, as a business, it’s a smart idea. Personally, I use Twitter to network with people (Check me out at @RebeccaBredin!) and have a few rules that I like to follow.

  • Try to post around 3-5 times a day. This can include retweets, sharing articles you like, or just posts engaging your followers
  • Respond to everything. If someone tweets you, tweet them back.
  • Engage with your audience

Twitter is going to be your biggest time drain, because you might have a lot of customers using twitter as their immediate way to reach you. I don’t blame them – twitter is fast, and if you can respond as quickly as they tweet you, you’ll look good in your customer’s eyes.

I Don’t Have the Time – How Much Will Social Media Cost Me?

If you need to outsource your social media, call me! you have a few different options. Depending on the size of your company, you might need to turn to a marketing agency that can take on your social media and marketing needs. If you’re not big enough for that, you could either hire someone in house to do all your social media, or take on someone to do the work freelance.

According to Buffer and  The Content Factorythe industry average settles between $200 to $350 per day. Both those links go well into the details of pricing for various companies, but you need to talk to your freelancer or company and find out their individual rates. Be open about what it is you need, but also be willing to listen to their suggestions for what might make your company flourish.

How Do I Get Social Media Followers?

Social media is great. It gives everyone a voice, and everyone’s voice can be equal. However, it’s very easy to get discouraged, especially as a business, when you lack social media followers. Many go into social media thinking it’s free advertising. We can get into how social media is so much more than a soap box in another post, but today let’s just discuss getting that audience.

Quality Versus Quantity

It’s so easy to get hung up on numbers. But instead of thinking about this digitally, lets pretend your social media followers are actual people in a conference hall, or a classroom. Which would you rather?

  • 100 people ignoring you completely, texting, talking over you, or even hurling insults your direction?
    OR
  • 10 people listening attentively, completely engaged and creating great discussions about your topic?

really hope you said you’d pick the 10 engaged users over the 100 disengaged users. You want your followers to be your cheerleaders, the people who have your back! Even if it takes longer, you want to build up quality social media followers, and not focus on the numbers only.

Engage

So lets pretend you now have ten followers. And half of them are family and friends, bless their hearts. It doesn’t matter if you have one follower or a thousand, you treat them all the same. They are a potential customer, or maybe already a loyal customer. Either way, you treat them the way you want to be treated when you walk into a store!

When it comes to social media, you need to talk to your followers. If you’re not getting questions or mentions yet, reach out to your followers. Make open ended questions, and make that conversation happen! As you build these conversations, others will get to see you through their your interactions with their friends, and you will begin to extend your circle of followers.

When you first start with twitter, you will get an alert every time you get a new follower. Take advantage of that! For example, I just got an email letting me know that I just got a new follower on my new twitter account. I’m going to take a minute to skim their account, get to know the person’s digital persona, and send them a nice greeting! You don’t need to do this with every person that follows you, but it is a great way to get to know your audience.

Be Consistent

People have different opinions on how often you should be posting, but there are a few things that are clear across the board.

POST.  DAILY.

If we’re talking Twitter, I’m of the opinion that you should have at least 3 to 5 tweets each day. These can be anything – article shares, retweets, engagement posts, inspirational posts – anything to keep you active throughout the day. If you’re going to share something that could encourage discussion, make sure you post it at a time when you can reply to people (so maybe not right before you head to bed, or over the weekend if you’re not at work.)

For Facebook, you’re better off posting your absolute best content once a day. Remember, with twitter, the pace is meant to be very quick. Facebook you’re competing with friends and family, so you don’t want to clog up someone’s wall with anything other than your best content. Article shares, behind the scenes and engagement posts are great – leave the inspiring posts to that friend. You know the one.

Follow to Be Followed

This one is specific to Twitter. You should spend a little time each day (no more than 15 minutes) finding new people to follow. Search for hashtags that are relevant to your interests, and look for experts in your field.  For example, I just searched #SocialMedia on twitter, and was given the option to search all people for #socialmedia. From there, I got a load of businesses and companies that might be of interest. So I’m going to add a few that catch my attention, and maybe send them a tweet if they have anything that looks particularly interesting.

Also, when you network, make sure you follow up and add those people to your twitter lists! You want to keep your contacts close, just in case they might need you (or you need them) in the future.


Do you have any other suggestions about how to build up your social media followers? Let me know in the comments below! And of course, feel free to follow me at @RebeccaBredin on twitter.