Many people think that anyone can learn how to do social media once they understand marketing, but proper execution is more difficult than most anticipate. Experts are often required to step in and make sense of the social media marketing concept. There is a lot more too social media than just followers, fans and likes; if you thought that’s all there is too it then you need an expert. Relationship-building, positioning, focus groups and marketplace insights are all a part of social media.
Options Available with Social Media Marketing
Do It Yourself (DIY)
Advantages – The concepts of social media marketing can be mastered with a bit of time and effort. Through research, users may learn how to attract visitors to their websites with social networking optimisation. Social media optimisation uses paid search engine marketing techniques, promotions and banner advertisements to attract traffic to the website. With some effort, clients can sign up for paid advertising to drive traffic to social media websites.
Disadvantages – DIY takes time to learn. The skills may never be used again except for a company’s personal website. An experienced professional does this daily and can perform the tasks faster than other contractors and therefore will end up saving everyone time in both the long and short term. Professionals may find links faster and identify the appropriate keywords for the job. The level of research a professional may perform to identify a target market will probably be much more comprehensive than a DIY attempt. Customised banners may be difficult to create alone. DIY banner creation systems may not produce the quality of a professional service.
Advantages – Paid professionals remove stress from the process and allow business owners to focus on mission critical tasks rather than small social media marketing tasks. For a small fee, business owners can simply take a consultative role in the process to guide social media marketers to what they prefer.
Disadvantages – Paid professionals can be costly. These professionals charge for every individual task that they undertake and complete. Time and constant communication skills are required to properly convey to social media marketers the goals of your business. This process may take several iterations to meet the needs of a business owner based upon the recommendations of a social media marketer. This may be even more difficult to explain for someone who does not understand the process.
Average Cost of Hiring a Social Media Expert
The average cost of hiring a social media expert varies. Typically, the price ranges anywhere between $7 and $40 per hour depending on the nature of the task etc. There are some contractors who will charge more and some who will charge less. Most of the contractors charging less are located in newly economically developed countries. In these countries, the dollar is strong. Outsourcing companies such as Elance and oDesk are good places to begin a search for social media experts.
Elance – Elance is an outsourcing service. Companies can find contractors to help with social media marketing through this forum. There are nearly 15,000 different Elancers online. Not all Elancers specialize in social media marketing, but companies will find some who do. Use the online services to find a contractor and explain the needs of the company. The contractor will inform business owners if the job is within their scope and give a quote based upon the services required.
oDesk – oDesk is another outsourcing company that allows business owners to identify social media marketers to perform the tasks at hand. There are over 3,000 contractors listed on oDesk who can help with social media marketing. These contractors can assist with SEO, social media marketing and website development. Search engine marketing (SEM) is a major part of driving traffic to social media websites. Contractors can help business owners develop strategies to gain visibility for companies.