Should Your Company Invest in Social Media?
The short answer is yes, but it should be an extremely minimal investment.
This is because most companies are better off spending their marketing budget on marketing efforts that have a bigger return on investment.
For most companies , it’s a good practice to keep their accounts up to date with an occasional post (1-2 posts a week) in case a potential customer or employee searches your company on social media.
But they shouldn’t put any more effort into social media outside of those posts. Any efforts taken to grow the account or increase engagement on posts will not produce returns that justify the amount of time, effort, and money spent to grow the accounts.
And here’s why.
Why Is Social Media Often Ineffective for Most Companies?
Social media platforms make money based on their ability to keep people engaged on their apps so that they can sell ad space to companies. The longer a user spends on the app, the more ads they can see, and the more money the social media platform makes.
With that said, social media platforms DO NOT want people to have excuses to leave the app. To prevent people from leaving the platform, they adjust their algorithms to show people content that they want to see while hiding content that encourages people to click on a link to leave the platform.
So how does this affect your company?
If you think about the actions you want people to take after seeing your social media page, the majority of those actions require leaving the platform to visit your company’s website or to call your company. This runs counter to the desire of the social media platforms, and on top of that, you’re not paying them!
So naturally, the platforms are going to limit how many people see your posts – especially if they have links for people to click out of the platform. This is why posts from Facebook business pages are virtually invisible even to the people who follow the pages!
Your company’s content will also be tucked away from plain view because it often won’t be what people scroll to see on social media. As we mentioned, one of these platforms’ tactics for keeping people on the apps is to show almost addictive content that they know people will want to see.
Now, the type of content that someone finds addictive relies solely on the individual which is why no two feeds look the same. However, some common types of addictive content include:
Memes or other comedic posts
Pop culture, music, and fashion
Influencers and celebrities
As a company promoting a service or product, your posts will most likely fall outside the scope of those popular categories which will prompt the platforms to hide them from the average person.
However, your content will be appealing to a certain group of social media users – other businesses who are in your industry and people who are personally connected to your company.
This is why social media platforms will suggest you follow other businesses in your industry and why the same handful of people like and comment on your posts.
But what if you make a conscious and consistent effort to follow complete strangers who aren’t in your industry? About 9/10 times, those people will never see your content after they follow you back – because of the social media algorithms.
Do you see? You will always be fighting a losing battle so long as you actively try to squeeze results from social media.
This is why we beg companies to spend very minimal effort on social media by making posts that are quick to produce but present your company in a positive and professional light.
What Content Should Companies Post?
The social media content will vary depending on the type of business you’re in, but here are some common types of content to post:
Photos of your work if your company offers a service
Photos of your products if your company sells products
Photos of your team on the job or at company functions
Photos of your equipment or facility if applicable
Photos of clients or customers if applicable
Information that establishes your expertise
Due to the informal nature of social media, your company can use photos taken from a smartphone in posts, especially if they’re photos of your team or equipment on the job.
It makes sense to post professional photos taken of your work if your company provides a service that is rooted in aesthetics (e.g. landscaping, hardscaping, floor covering installation, shower door installations, etc.). But those should be photos that you have already taken for your portfolio or for case studies.
* If your company provides a service that is rooted in aesthetics, and you’re not already taking professional photos, read this blog on why you absolutely should be.
The captions on your posts should be relatively short unless the person writing them is a quick and thoughtful writer. Again, your company should be spending minimal effort on maintaining your social media accounts.
Speaking of writing, who should be creating these posts anyway?
Who Should Manage Your Social Media?
As a marketing company, you’d think it would be heresy for us to recommend that your company find a local high school or college intern to run your social media account for cheap or pay an administrative staff member a little extra to manage it…
But that’s exactly what we recommend because it’s cheaper than hiring a marketing team like us to do it!
We know social media generates little to no returns, so we want to caution you against wasting your marketing budget on it. We’d rather you use that money on more effective marketing efforts that will generate better returns!
Since we mentioned budget, we might as well discuss how much you should be spending on social media.
How Much Should You Spend on Social Media?
Like we’ve been saying, your money will go a lot further on more effective marketing channels, but we do recognize and acknowledge the need to keep your social media accounts up to date.
Depending on your budget size, we recommend spending between 10%-20% of your total budget on social media management.
If you choose to work with a marketing team for social media management, you can expect to spend 25%-40% of your marketing budget on social media depending on the company.