As a business owner and solopreneur, it’s really important to know that the time, energy, and resources you invest in your business provides a generous return on investment.
Social media platforms are a powerful tool that can help you market your business, but unless you know how to use it to generate tangible ROI for your business, is it really worth it?
This article will provide you with a clear breakdown of all the information you need to make the best decision for your business.
How Much Time Does Social Media Require?
Even though having social media accounts is free (unless you spend money on ads), that doesn’t mean there are no costs associated to using these platforms to your benefit.
Since time costs money to business owners, let’s look at the amount of time the average business owner spends on social media.
According to a survey by Vertical Response, about 43 percent of small businesses spend about 6 hours per week on social media.
Writing and posting a weekly blog post can take 1-3 hours to do. So this means it takes a full day to write, schedule, and post to social media plus write and post a blog article each week.
This is assuming you, the business owner would be doing everything required to fulfil these two marketing tasks. If you decide to hire someone to help, then the money you pay out needs to be the ROI factor as opposed to your time.
The Benefits of Social Media
On the flip side let’s look at the advantages of social media for your business. In general, there are 5 benefits a business owner can count on if using social media marketing:
- Relationship Building: Social media is an excellent way to build relationships with prospects. It provides an opportunity for multiple exposures to your fan base by using a mixture of information and calls to action.
- Lead Generation: Add followers to your email marketing list by sharing links to downloadable freebies on your social media accounts. This allows you to send follow-up emails and information that can lead to sales.
- Traffic Generation: SEO optimized blog posts can help your website rank higher for important keywords in the search engines. Plus, when you post blog articles, you can tell your social media followers about them and share the link to your blog to read more.
- Consistency: Staying top of mind requires frequent marketing touches. With many people spending hours a day checking their Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts on their smart phones, social media gives you lots of exposure to your target market.Sharing daily social media posts and weekly blog articles keeps the relationship with your customers strong.
- Customer Service: Social media offers an easy way for customers to reach you with questions, problems, or complaints about your products and services.This gives you a chance to respond immediately to address the issue. Plus, giving the VIP treatment to customers in need shows that you are a company who cares and goes a long way towards building your reputation online.
Social Media Tactics That Drive Results
What actions should your business be doing regularly on social media to generate the best results?
Here are just a few of the tactics you should be employing on your social media channels:
- Strategically planning social media content in alignment with sales goals
- Curate content on a regular basis
- Promote LinkedIn Pulse and blog posts on social media
- Interact with other social media pages and groups to attract new followers
- Create and share social media graphics, photos, videos and infographics
- Listen and respond to comments on your own social media posts
- Engage in social listening and respond to those who mention you
- Promote high engagement posts with social media ads
- Review analytics and reporting on engagement posts and reach
- Plan opt-in freebies to share on social media for list building
- Write and post blog posts
- Look for guest blogging opportunities
- and so on…
So you can see to really stay ahead of the game, realistically, you need to have a dedicated social media person or hire some help to do it right.
The ROI of Social Media
Because the benefits of social media efforts are often intangible, such as the amount of brand exposure your business would get, it’s often difficult to put an actual number to the ROI of your social media efforts.
But if you look at it this way, just a few new customers every month (depending on what you sell) would more than likely pay the costs of doing social media marketing for your business.
Plus, if you hire someone to manage your social media, it frees you to focus on other revenue-generating activities.
Bottom line, if you aren’t on social media, you are missing out on business. The opportunity cost of not marketing on social media is with lost visibility, less website traffic, slower list building, and weaker relationships.