Council Post: Eight Considerations When Allocating A Social Media Budget

The entire marketing world knows how powerful a well-funded social media campaign can be when growing a brand image. It can be challenging for smaller entrepreneurs to determine how much money should go into this part of your marketing, as there are several dozen social media channels that you can invest in. How do you determine how much money to dedicate to one or more of those social media accounts?

Social media has made interacting with customers a lot easier, which means the considerations compared to traditional digital marketing are different. Below, eight members of Young Entrepreneur Council explore the critical elements they consider when allocating their social media budgets, and offer advice about budgeting effectively as a small business owner.

1. Where Your Target Audience Hangs Out

The top consideration has to be where your target audience hangs out online. It doesn’t make any sense for us to put time and resources into a platform if our audience doesn’t exist there, so you have to become laser-focused on where they do hang out. One of the easiest ways to determine this is to interview prospects about their online activities and test, test, test platforms. – Erin Blaskie, Fellow.app

2. How It Serves Your Audience Best

Virtually any business decision I make rests on whether it serves my audience best. This is also true when it comes to social media marketing budget allocation. I’ve found that my audience is active on places like Twitter and Facebook, which makes these places a priority. Understanding your audience will help you decide how to budget for social media marketing. – Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner

3. How Much Time You’ll Save

My team looks at how much time we’ll save by spending the money. A software tool that takes too long to onboard or use regularly does us no good. Our social media spending should save us money while delivering solid returns for that money. It’s very easy to spend a lot of money on software-as-a-service products today, so businesses have to be vigilant about what they spend on. – Josh Kohlbach, Wholesale Suite

4. Prioritizing Content Creation

If you don’t have enough money to pay an agency or hire an employee to do everything, prioritize content creation over content deployment. Having scroll-stopping videos and graphics is super important. It’s much easier to have an employee or to carve out some time yourself to schedule posts and answer feedback than it is to try to create great visual and video content. – Brittany Hodak, Keynote Speaker

5. Influencer Marketing Options

Every product/service provider should consider an influencer marketing budget these days. As part of being successful in the early stages of the product adoption life cycle, it’s key to have industry influencers on board providing feedback, recommending it to their audience (which should align with your target demographics) and giving you the initial momentum you need to succeed. – Andy Karuza, LitPic

6. Hiring A Social Media Manager

I think it’s vital that you consider putting some of your budget into hiring a social media manager. We have a small team, and it’s not easy to manage a social channel while also building a constantly evolving product. Managers for our social media accounts have made our lives much easier, and it’s one expense I always plan for when it’s time to assess our budget. – John Brackett, Smash Balloon LLC

7. A Content Marketing Strategy

Because content is so important, investing in a solid content marketing strategy takes your social media to the next level. Too many social media marketers focus on the wrong methods to gain a following, but posting high-quality content does the work for you. – Stephanie Wells, Formidable Forms

8. Tracking Your Results

Everything comes down to tracking your results so you know where to focus your efforts. There’s no point in allocating a large portion of your budget to activities that don’t yield results. It’s also a matter of identifying the right key performance indicators. For example, simply having a large number of fans for your Facebook page doesn’t always translate to success. You need to measure engagement and conversions. – Kalin Kassabov, ProTexting

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