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Factors Impacting Your Social Media Management Costs

Which major factors can cause social media management costs to go up (or down)?

Social Media costs go up and down as your social media needs change. There is no “one size fits all” approach. However, there are some factors that impact the social media costs to fluctuate. Being armed with the knowledge can help you plan and prepare strategically for times when you need the budget to fluctuate.

  • Strategy
  • Frequency of posting & engagement
  • Quality of posting
  • Scope of creative services (graphic design, video creation/editing, writing service)


1) Strategy

Before a social media campaign’s frequency, quality, and creative services can be determined, a strategy must be developed. How detailed should your social media strategy be? Social media strategies begin with determining the specific target audience, selecting the right platforms to reach that audience, and then defining the goals, how you will measure success, and actions are considered a conversion. These aspects can be as general or as highly detailed as you see fit, but they must both be in place to effectively determine your social media costs. In our experience, we believe the more detail in your strategy and plan, the better your execution will be, and the better you can control the social media costs in the future.

For our comprehensive guide to defining your target market, click here.
Goals, Measurements, Conversions – What are you looking to achieve with your social media campaign? Knowing your goals will help your social media team (whether they are in-house or an agency) put together a strategic plan to accomplish the goals. Some goals to consider are:
    • increasing followers to boost brand awareness and website traffic
    • engagements and interactions including comments, likes, shares, re-pins, lists, etc.
    • customer service and answering customer questions through social media messaging
    • lead generation through sign-ups, downloads, phone calls, brick-and-mortar visits, etc.
    • online sales

2) Frequency of Posting

Part of the strategy should be how often you are posting on each social media network. Keep in mind that if you are using multiple social networks, your posting frequency may be different for each one.

Some networks require higher frequency. Twitter, for example, is a unique platform, because the lifespan of a single tweet is very short. Successful Twitter campaigns generally require a higher frequency of posting and a higher degree of engagement. For other platforms, like Pinterest, a measured, timing-based approach can be more effective than some high-frequency campaigns.

Your social media management team can help you determine the optimal number of postings for each platform to help you refine until you reach your desired results. The labor involved in delivering these posts, along with the desired level of customer service and engagement, will impact your costs.


3) Quality of Posting

“All men are created equal,” was most famously used in the U.S. Declaration of Independence, penned by Thomas Jefferson as a truth well understood. And there is a similar truth that we have often penned, but that is not so well understood: “All social media posts are not created equal.”

All social channels need fresh content to stream into their feeds. The best social media content is derived from a blending of your custom blog articles and their photos, animated GIFs, videos, and a sprinkling of related content from third party news outlets.

Here is an example to demonstrate the point: A business might have a newspaper ad that touts an upcoming sale. Just because this ad works well in the Sunday paper, doesn’t mean that it will look good and communicate to the target market of your company’s Instagram account.

Making quality posts means taking advantage of the strengths of each individual platform. Some posts work well cross-platform and cross-medium. Versatile content is helpful, but take care to avoid “shoehorning” posts that don’t really fit. A quality post is created specifically for your online target audience and for the platform on which it will appear. The post may be entertaining, informative, educational, community-centric, or sales. Rest assured, it is the variety of your content that creates the “media” part of social media.

Your marketing team will provide you with high-quality, unique posts for each social media outlet. This approach will have an impact on the amount you pay for the management—as well as an impact on the effectiveness of the results.


4) Creative Services

Enlisting the management services of a professional marketing team that has a variety of skills that include writing, graphic design and marketing will require more investment than if you hire your nephew or two kids working from a coffee shop to represent your brand. However, the creativity and expertise a professional team provides will impact your social media costs as a one-time fee or as part of your annual budget. When your social media posts combine clever writing, informative content and beautiful pictures, your content will have the greatest opportunity of being liked and shared. These well-crafted, attractive posts appear to the user like water in the desert of text-only, self-promoting business messages. A professional team has the knowledge, training and experience acquired by working for many other clients. These assets can be a benefit to your company and improve your ROI.


Which factor is most important?

The answer to this question is not a one-size-fits-all. Giving consideration to your industry, your target audience, and your goals will guide your social media marketing team to help you determine which areas are more important for your particular business. Social media costs can be managed and return a profit for your business if they are well-planned and well-executed with consistency and creativity.


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