Or, how social media convinced the world they were marketers.
The average person in 2021 spends 145 minutes or close to two and a half hours on social media every day. Again for the people in the back: 2:45 EVERY DAY. Posting, reading, watching, DMing, evaluating. It’s almost as if everyone has an unpaid internship at a marketing agency doing social media!
SO, much to the chagrin of marketing agencies everywhere, many, many people consider themselves social media experts. It should then come as no surprise when businesses allow their own employees to manage their social media presence. “After all,” the logic goes, “Kate is on TikTok and Instagram all day anyway, may as well have her do our company’s pages while she’s at it!”
The idea is one born out of noble and predictable motivations:
Saving money: By skipping out on that agency contract or vetting those five freelancers, we can get organic in-house content at a cost lower than employees’ existing salaries. An easy win (it would SEEM) for any number-cruncher.
Expertise: Conventional reasoning suggests that no one knows a business better than its own employees. By doing things in-house, reasoning stands that they would know exactly what to say, what to share, and what the purpose behind it is. (Note: Being tech-dependent does not translate to being tech-saavy.)
Hassle factor: No one wants more work added to their plate. Plain and simple, we all have enough to do. When social media becomes an in-house responsibility, we save time and money (see point 1) by not having to interview potential agencies, set aside time to answer their questions, and guide them through our goals for social media. Easy (or so it would seem).
Unfortunately, most roads are built on good intentions, including those to places we’d rather not go (like Hell or crappy social media campaigns). Following are three reasons to really consider before deciding to eschew an outside expert to help you with your socials.
The cost of savings: We’ve all heard the adage “spend money to make money.” Perhaps nowhere is that more fully realized than marketing. The whole point of the marketing spend is to create sales opportunities to eventually secure more clients. If social media doesn’t have the potential to make your business more money, what then? By all means, have it done casually (and consistently!) by someone in-house. BUT if social media has the potential to drive growth (it likely does) consider whether your “savings” are costing you the growth that could be achieved by hiring an expert.
The forest for the trees: While your employees DO know your company, they likely aren’t consumer behaviorists or marketing experts, and they’ll never have a truly objective third-party perspective. Bringing in an outsider who spends all day leveraging social platforms to create growth allows your employees to spend their time on what they do best rather than guessing at how to execute a social media strategy.
Hassle factor!: Although interviewing agencies, firms, and freelancers can be time-consuming and . . . just plain annoying, the upfront work put into this process saves time down the road when the folks you select are executing a campaign. MANY companies vastly underestimate just how much time it will take their internal people to create content. Ultimately, this usually leads to inconsistent posting and a time sync that provides little if any value.