Where Our Social Media Efforts Are Best Served

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Where Our Social Media Efforts Are Best Served
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For many small businesses, their ability to make a profit or keep their heads just above water hinges on being able to successfully promote their companies.

In today’s day and age, part of those promotional efforts revolve around social media and the ability to interact with both current and potential customers.

As many of us that immerse ourselves in social media on a daily basis know, SM is a relatively free and informative means by which to get one’s message out to the masses. That then begs the question, is a better to do social media promotion in-house or outsource it to agencies that specialize in it?

In the event your small business finds itself dealing with this question, consider a number of factors prior to making any decisions.

Among the things to look at for having your social media promotions staying inside the company would be:

  • Familiarization – It only stands to reason that your in-house team, be in the marketing or public relations folks, have more of a clue as to what is going on inside your business than someone on the outside. If you keep the social media efforts inside the company, you also have greater control as to when the items will run and on what venues;
  • Saving money – If you decide to outsource your social media efforts to a company that specializes in such work, expect to pay for it. If you stop and think about it, promoting social media is not the most time consuming task in the world. If you have it in your budget to spend the funds for social media promotion that is fine, but if you find yourself scrutinizing each and every task your company does, it would make more sense to do the work yourself;
  • One more oversight responsibility – Should you decide to outsource your company’s social media efforts, it only stands to reason that you will do your homework and look for a social media specialist. While you trust them to do the work correctly, this is one more area that you will need to at least periodically oversee, having a line of communication set up for any issues. When you keep the social media efforts in-house, the answers to any questions and/or problems will come much quicker.

Among the things to look at for having your social media promotions going outside the company would be:

  • Professionalism – Not to say that you do not have an individual or team on your staff to handle social media, but outsourcing it to an agency that does this for a living takes some of the pressure off of you. As long as you have done your research and found a reliable agency, you can rest easier knowing that it is being professionally handled on a daily basis. This important responsibility can be taken off of your hands so that you can focus on other vital tasks;
  • Money well spentWhile all companies want to hold the line on spending, having your social media efforts done outside the company can be money well spent. You are getting an unbiased opinion and approach to your social media needs, and  not from those within your company that will likely agree with whatever approach you take to promoting your company via social media;
  • One less oversight responsibilityHaving an outside agency to oversee your social media tasks allows you to have the employee or employees that would have been directed for the assignment to focus elsewhere. With additional companies in today’s trying economy attempting to do more with less, outsourcing social media takes one more responsibility off your employees’ to do list.

At the end of the day, whether you outsource or keep your social media efforts in-house, the goal is to properly determine how social media will assist in growing your business.

Until you are able to answer that question, keep all your options on the table, or in this case, your computer.

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Dave Thomas

Dave Thomas

Dave Thomas covers consumer and small business topics for various websites, including Reputation.com.
Download: Social Media Strategy
Where the rubber meets the road: A look at SEJ's own social media strategy.