There's no doubt that social media can be a powerful marketing tool if it's done well but should businesses opt for in-house or outsourced social media management?
Social media marketing has been proven to give a far higher return on investment than traditional channels like newspaper advertising and email marketing. The problem for most businesses is finding time to do it properly and, once they've decided to prioritise it, deciding whether to hire someone in-house or opt for an outsourced service.
The pros of outsourcing:
Agencies are social media specialists and are familiar with the latest tools for measuring engagement, the best times to tweet to your audience and the best hashtags for your industry.
They have experience of running campaigns and building followers and will know what works best, saving time and getting things off the ground quickly.
They can plan your content to complement other marketing activity or seasonal initiatives for maximum impact.
If you happen to have a busy week or two, your social media still gets done if it's outsourced. Your agency will make sure it's a priority even if you can't.
The time you would have spent managing social media can be put to use on other areas of your business.
Your social media activity will be more strategic and sustained.
Your agency will be able to provide reports that demonstrate the effectiveness of each post, channel and campaign.
What else to consider:
Good communication is essential. A good social media agency will be in touch regularly for updates on your business and activity.
If your agency can't react to spur of the moment events in your business, it may be worth doing some of your social media in house.
Make sure your agency knows how you want to handle customer service issues on social media.