Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and the list goes on. Building a B2B social media campaign for your business can be a very time consuming process. And if you run a small business, you do not have time to manage all those social media platforms yourself. In fact, you’ve probably only just got time to manage one. On average it takes an SME nearly two hours a day to successfully run just one social networking site. So should you even try to do it yourself? Or should you outsource your social media? Given the investment of time that is needed to perfect your campaign it is often worth calling upon the experts.
So why should you be outsourcing? Lets break it down.
Are your competitors bang on the social media trend? Are they forever uploading their company updates onto Facebook and Tweeting about the latest industry news? Staying on top of the latest news as well as publishing it can be one hell of a task and that is why many businesses are now choosing to outsource their social media campaign.
Outsourcing means that you have the added advantage of knowing that a professional social media service has the potential to convey professionalism and thought leadership. A good social media service will take the time to research your market niche and explore the key developments within your industry so that relevant quality content is produced on your behalf.
Do you ever read your competitors Tweets and Facebook updates and think, why didn’t we do something like that? Why isn’t our content as engaging as theirs? Social networking is a form of advertising, and advertising takes a lot of time and consideration. You can ‘share’ and ‘tweet’ to increase your social presence, but your posts need to engaging, witty and smart, so that they integrate business and consumer needs.
With any social media campaign content is king. Although it may only seem like a quick 140 character Tweet or a short Facebook update, it takes time to produce quality content. If you’re a small business or a start up, you don’t have the time to manage your social media activities, yet you want an active presence over all the major networks. By outsourcing your social media, you’re making sure that your messages are going out, you’re gaining followers, taking questions and comments off your potential clients. All without you needing to invest your time or knowledge into knowing how the networks operate.
How do you know you’re getting value for money when it comes to investing in social media marketing? This is the question that deters businesses from getting started, because obviously you want assurance that your spend won’t be wasted. An effective social media service involves much more than just liking and tweeting, a good social media service will have the appropriate mechanisms to track the results of your social media activity, and will be proactive about getting measurable results.
Although social media services come at a cost, your service provider will be keep to demonstrate the ROI, because they will want you to invest with them. Consider this, if you’re going to do it properly in house, then you’ll need to think about changing a current employees job role so that they can invest their working day in social media. Then you will also need to consider who will take on their previous role? This could lead to an unnecessary recruitment drive within the business, which requires investment of both time and money- both of which could leave you with more overall outgoings than you had originally anticipated.
If outsourcing to a dedicated B2B social media service is the best option for your business, undergo full research into the potential company and their services to ensure you’re getting the right package for your business needs.
This post was written by Emily Lockey, on behalf of IBA International – the parent company of iBAengage, a global social media service dedicated to B2B for small businesses and start-ups – kick start your social media campaign today.