Your Core Business Strength
Chances are, you got into your line of work and started a business based on a specific skill set, area of expertise or a passion for services or goods you offer. This core strength is the foundation for your business. For the owner of a cleaning service, this includes the love of physical cleaning and serving others. For a realtor, the idea of helping people find their dream home or getting started in real estate investment is energizing. For a construction company, years of experience building and remodeling homes has earned you a reputation of reliability and excellence. The reason others desire your services or products is because they rely on your passion, skill and expertise to provide something they cannot do or do not have time to do themselves. Your core business strength offers value to others. Your core business strength is the backbone to your business.
There’s More to Running Your Business
But to stay afloat, stay compliant and actually grow your business, there are some other tasks, besides your core area of expertise, that you will need to implement. Things like accounting and finance functions, technology and IT management, and, of course, building and implementing a marketing plan are all things to consider. As you consider these business functions, you will need to consider which ones make the most sense to outsource to a knowledgeable third party and which ones to keep in-house and do yourself. Trying to do it ALL yourself will likely lead to the diluting of your core business strength and take too much time away from your revenue-earning business focus.
Are you a Marketing Expert? Ae you a Social Media Marketing Expert?
It doesn’t require an expert to know that marketing your business is critical for growth. Potential clients must know about you and what you offer, trust you and your brand, and know how to engage with you. Putting together strategic marketing objectives and a defined budget is essential. Knowing the media mix you will use, the core message, and the allotted budget for each activity will help you execute a successful marketing plan. A general rule of thumb, according to the US Small Business Administration, is to spend 5-8% of gross sales revenue on marketing. You will want to spend marketing money wisely to get the most bang for your buck. In today’s digital landscape, the internet and more specifically social media provides a powerful, cost-effective electronic platform that helps to reach a wide audience for the purpose of making a brand impression, building your brand’s trust reputation, entertaining and interacting with your audience, educating prospects about your business and industry, and ultimately influencing a decision to purchase. So, if this platform is so affordable, accessible and appears relatively easy to use, why would a small business owner spend additional marketing budget to outsource this task to a third party? The truth is in order to really leverage the advantages that social media offers, it DOES require expertise to know how, how much, when, what, and what not to to post. The dynamic nature of electronic media means that the rules of engagement are constantly changing and to stay ahead of the competition you’ll need to stay ahead of the curve. Hiring an in-house social media marketing expert would cost $45-70K in annual salary so for many small businesses this option for acquiring needed expertise is not affordable. This is why outsourcing your social media marketing makes sense for small businesses.
An Extension of Your Business
So what should you be looking for in an outsourced social media expert? There are many packages and providers available and its important for you to understand exactly what you will be getting for the money. Large online agencies that offer cookie-cutter generic posting packages, often times at a high cost, will not help you stand out and will not help you establish your unique brand presence online. The best outsourced solution is going to be a specialized social media marketing service provider that acts as if they are an extension of your business. An initial consultation meeting with you to understand your core strengths, your core business philosophy and objectives, your target market and your message will ensure that your business and your brand is represented online the way you would want it. Establishing clear expectations of the number and type of posts, the posting schedule, and the best social media channels for your business is also important. An example of a great outsourced option is the Social Serenity package that Eco York offers. The starter package includes three different posts to three channels each week. All posts aim to educate, entertain, influence, interact and persuade your online audience of customers and prospects. Each post, which includes a high-quality image or video, is custom-curated and posted on your behalf, as if the outsourced marketing specialist is an extended part of your staff. Your social media marketing gets handled without you having to take the time out of your field, away from your core business strength and revenue-generating opportunities, to research, curate, write, format, schedule, post, or track these activities. It all gets handled seamlessly like clockwork so to provide the consistency, frequency, and effective engaging content that is required to take full advantage of this digital marketing platform.
Measuring Return on Investment
Building your brand reputation online does not happen overnight. Acquiring followers and engaging audiences online does not happen overnight. Building your brand reputation and brand trust happens over time so you must be prepared to invest for several months before judging whether or not a service is providing the return on investment you desire. One of the keys to successful online and social media marketing is consistency and perseverance. This is where many small businesses who attempt to handle their social media marketing themselves fail. They start out with great intentions but when other business needs become prioritized, their time and focus on regular and impactful social media postings get pushed to the bottom o the list. Or they run out of things to say. Or they perceive their amateur efforts as unsuccessful because they did not have appropriate expertise or expectations of how to navigate the dynamic nuances of each media channel on an ongoing basis. When the right outsourced third party social media marketing services provider is acting on your behalf, you can trust that the consistency you need to continually build your brand, engage and grow your audience, and ultimately convert prospects to clients through your online marketing, specifically social media marketing, is working and providing a great return on your investment. You can rely on the passion, skill and core-business strength of your social media marketing expert to provide a needed service that you do not have knowledge or time to do yourself. This is why outsourcing Social Media Marketing makes sense for your small business.
Your partner in Developing Solutions that Save Time and Money,
President Eco York, LLC