Social media has entered the mainstream market and doesn’t seem to be leaving anytime soon. It has forever changed the way we as marketers do business now. This can turn into a really good thing, as social media has revolutionized the way clients and prospects are able to interact and engage with a company.
However, marketing on social media requires the right strategy and skills not just in social media, but in holistic marketing. Although it may seem appealing to have a specialized social media agency, below are 8 reasons why you should look elsewhere.
Social Media Basics
Social media is an essential component of many marketing plans, to the point where it’s considered a negative if a company is missing social media profiles.
The overall goal of social media relates to branding, activity, and interactions. You should be trying to create as many positive interactions with as many of your targeted prospects as possible.
The basic rules of social media are:
- Have a plan for what to share
- Reach out to your target market and influencers for followers
- Be genuine in your posts and replies
- Produce quality content and lots of it
- Be active not just in posts, but in comments and other interactions
- Always stay connected to fresh content and buzz
- Make it easy for people to interact with you
- Encourage engagement and communication from your target market
- Stay current and up-to-date
- Entice people to share their opinion or own content
- Focus on the social media tools and platforms that make sense for your product or service
8 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Hire a Social Media Agency
Many marketers have struggled to keep up with all the new social media platforms popping in and out. However, they need to recognize that social media is an expansion of their whole marketing plan, and not a mishmash of content and comments.
Participating in social media is still about generating revenue through great marketing and even better customer service – nothing has changed in regards to that.
Marketers need people on their teams that can learn how to use social media platforms, but that doesn’t mean a specific social media expert is needed to have success.
Many social media specialists flout their knowledge of each social media platform, but many lack the marketing knowledge necessary to generate positive results for a business.
The big 8 reasons NOT to hire a social media agency are:
There are no experts in social media
SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOT A NEW CONCEPT
YOU NEED HIRE A TRUE MARKETING PROFESSIONAL INSTEAD
SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOT A STRATEGY
ANYONE CAN LEARN ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA
SPEND YOUR DOLLARS ON TRUE MARKETING
OUTSIDERS WON’T UNDERSTAND YOUR COMPANY INITIATIVES AND MESSAGE
THEY CAN’T WRITE
So many people claim to be an expert in social media, but lack the marketing skills to use it for businesses. They are able to keep up with the new platforms and technology, but aren’t able to apply their knowledge in a way that garners influence or generates revenue.
There has always been a form of what we now call “social media” since people started interacting via modems, and the same concepts of marketing to those people apply to social media.
The benefits of having a true marketing professional far outweigh the benefits of having someone who can master the settings of Twitter. A true marketing professional will be able to incorporate social media into an overall marketing plan instead of trying to force it to stand on its own (which doesn’t work as well).
It’s a tactic. Think about the reasons why you would perform social media – those are your strategies, and they should be able to apply to more than just the social media realm.
The nice thing about technology is that there are ways to learn and gather information online. Learning how to use a particular platform takes a day and some online research – knowing how to use that platform to benefit your business takes a lot more experience and knowledge, which a holistic marketing firm would have.
With specialization comes a premium in price. The benefits of hiring a specialized social media firm do not make up for the cost that comes from getting a specialist instead of a more holistic company or hiring internally.
Outside companies have a disadvantage in that they don’t live and breathe your company day in and day out. It will be harder for them to relay the right message and build the right content to engage your target market. Additionally, a big appeal of social media is seeing the company in casual moments – this is hard to do when social media is outsourced.
Content is one of the most important parts of social media marketing therefore you need to be generating great content all the time. A lot of this content is going to be shared on social media, and you can’t rely on the social media specialist to write it.
When incorporating social media into your marketing plan, think about who is using social media, who the experts really are and the true purpose of using it.
Check out these statistics (fastcompany.com):
- The fastest growing demographic on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are 55-64 age group.
- Youtube reaches more US adults ages 18-34 than any cable network.
- Every second, 2 new users join LinkedIn.
- Social media has overtaken porn as the number 1 activity on the web.
- 93% of marketers use social media for business.
The key to social media is capitalizing on those social media platforms that make sense for your business. It isn’t ideal to utilize every single platform and expect to be great at them all, especially if you are a small business.
Choose the ones that make sense and then put people in charge that are capable of staying on top of fresh content and keeping users engaged. Your holistic marketing team is your best bet because they will truly understand the needs of your business.
“Focus on how to BE social, not on how to DO social.” – Author Unknown