The Cost of Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is a great way to get your business known and to expand your reach. To make a real impact in the social media marketing world you need to know what you’re doing, or be able to hire someone who does. So, the big question is, how much will it cost you?

Well, to that question there is no solid answer as the cost will vary anywhere from $1000 to $20,000 per month. There are so many factors to take into account. The level of experience of your hired social media agency, how large your business is, what types of services you’re looking for are some things. Since the cost is so varied for social media marketing, people often have a difficult time deciding what the best option is for their business and their budget. Just trying to figure out what social media outlets to use and which agency will best cover the needs of your business can be daunting and unfortunately to many it can be aversive.

Hopefully the following information will help to ease your stress and give you some direction on what may be best for your business.

Social media marketing costs will vary by outlet and each outlet will work best with different types of businesses. So you need to do your homework first and figure out which social media platform will yield the greatest return on investment (ROI). There are so many different types of platforms you can use such as:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • Snapchat

This list will undoubtedly grow in the future so it’s best to stay on track with what’s current. Depending on your business, specific platforms may work best whereas others may not be useful at all. This is something you want to keep in mind so you don’t end up paying more for marketing on platforms that essentially will not give you a ROI.

Here’s a closer approximation of what you may be looking to spend when you hire an agency to market your business, as well as the types of businesses that get the best ROI on different outlets.

Facebook:

This is one of the biggies. People like to check out a businesses Facebook page to look at reviews and see what the business is all about. This outlet will be great for any business to have. This is also going to be one of the more expensive platforms for marketing. The typical agency tends to charge anywhere between $2500 up to $9000 per month. This includes the setup of a new Facebook account and the unlimited ongoing training to business partners.

Here’s my Free Facebook group that has a lot of business owners learning and helping each other with growing their business.

Twitter:

The pricing will different depending on two things. The first is if you’re needing an entirely new account set up. The second is just a revamp of a current one. For an agency to launch a new account, you’ll be looking to spend anywhere from about $2000- $4000 per month. This is including setting up, outsourcing content creation and consumer interaction. To step up your current Twitter account, you’re going to be paying around $1000-$2500 per month. Twitter requires a lot of customer service, outreach and PR. Hiring an agency to help get your business noticed among all the others, is definitely worth it. Every business could benefit from a Twitter account.

The best deal for most businesses is to get a package deal that includes marketing on both Facebook and Twitter. Bundling will increase your audience, as these are two of the most popular platforms any business can use, but you will save on the price as well. This is best especially if you’re on a budget, however if you have a little more room to spend, adding on other platforms to the bundle is something you can look in to if it will help your ROI.

Instagram:

Typically speaking you’ll be looking to spend $1000 or more per month. Always take into account whether marketing on this platform will yield a great ROI. For instance, if you’re a business that continually has captivating visual content, then this is for you, otherwise look for different marketing platforms that you can get more use from. 

Pinterest:

This can be a great marketing platform for a lot of different businesses. Like Instagram, Pinterest is image based, it allows its users to search different topics and organize images from around the web. If your target market consists mainly of females with higher incomes, this may be a great platform for you to market with. The cost is about $1000 or more per month.

SnapChat:

This platform is generally a bit trickier to use for marketing. Users are able to send and receive images and short videos that disappear after being opened or after 24 hours. If you’re able to work with this platform to gain a great ROI then it may be for you, however growing an audience with SnapChat can be quite hard so only go into this if you’re positive you can make it work. This will also probably cost you about $1000 per month, if not more.

The Cost of Outsourcing Social Media Advertising:

Certain social media outlets will have paid advertising platforms available. Such paid advertising is definitely beneficial and will increase your return on investment if used properly. These platforms can not only help to grow your followers, but they can also increase traffic to your website and in turn your sales. Adding on these paid advertisements however will cost extra if you’re hiring an agency for media management. To manage your campaigns agencies will typically charge 10% – 20% of the total ad buy. However, you may be able to negotiate a lower percentage if you have a larger budget. On top of the percentage you’ll be paying for social media advertising, you’ll also have to pay an ad management fee monthly.

The reason there is such a great cost associated with paid advertising is because it is a lot more complicated than it may seem. These ads are so effective because they target extremely specific audiences in order to lead to higher conversion rates. There are some necessary components to a successful ad. Knowing what a Facebook pixel is and how to target ads to individuals who have visited your website is one. Understanding the correct dimensions to use for an image in a Facebook ad is another. Finding the best image to text ratio to get your ads approved is also a necessary component. If you’re not knowledgeable in this, then it may be best to hire an agency to make sure that it’s worth your ROI.

Social Media Strategy:

One of the main things that are not included in the prices listed previously is the strategy. Some agencies will include status updates and customer interaction, but you’ll be paying more if you want some kind of strategy behind everything. You want to be sure that strategy is included in what you’re paying for since it is one of the most important variables. The strategy is the game plan, what are the goals you’re trying to meet? These are the things that need to be addressed so that you actually achieve the best ROI. Otherwise, you’ll end up paying for marketing with no direction. Since strategy is so important in the entire process, agencies will charge extra for it, so be sure it’s included in any package you go with and be willing to spend a bit more for it.

What Will Social Media Strategy Cost You?

For an agency to create an all-inclusive strategy for all channels you’ll be spending approximately $3000 – $20,000 a month, this is with a minimum of two social platforms. The average for this type of service though is roughly $4000 – $7000. However, if the agency will be building your accounts from nothing and consulting for a 12 month contract, the price will run up to $15,000 per month.

Usually you will not need to spend extravagantly for a social media strategy. Yet, if you’re trying to gather information pertaining to persona and preferences of customers/ clients, you may be able to account for spending $20,000. This type of purchase would pay off. You would benefit from gathered background info and data points required to implement an extremely successful campaign. Just be sure that if you are dropping a significant amount of money that you’ll be receiving a unique strategy customized specifically for your business. If the agency will be using a tried and true method (chances are they will be) make sure you’re not being charged extra for creating something that has already been created.

What’s the Cost for Auditing Facebook and Twitter?

Be prepared to spend about $2000 -$10,000 for this service. Agency’s will audit your current social media strategy and show you how to improve with a few pointers and a competitive analysis. In most cases the price will be on the lower end of the spectrum, but if you’re a larger company willing to fly in a specialist to train your employees, $10,000 will be more likely.

If you’re looking to purchase a social media package monthly, be sure the company is not charging you extra for an audit. Auditing your social outlets is something the agency will need to do to come up with a proposal for you.

Is a Social Media Strategy Right For Your Business?

YES! If you’re spending money for social media marketing, strategy is a necessary component. You can use social media outlets to benefit your business. Don’t waste money investing in marketing that has no proven strategy.

Why Does This All Cost So Much?

Anyone has the capability in setting up an Instagram or Twitter account, its easy. The actual process involved in using these platforms to gain a ROI for your business is quite tedious. There are so many more components involved in successful marketing than tweeting and posting pictures. Marketers must build followers and lists, they must understand the correct image size to use for each platform, which posts have the best conversion, and how to use posts for PR opportunities. The list goes on and on. The marketer must know the best tool and best practice for each platform. They must stay up to date on the skills required so that their client always has the best ROI.

To that end, you can start to understand every minute detail involved in running a successful social media marketing campaign. Like most other businesses, outsourcing for social media marketing is well worth it to help grow your business.