When it comes to social media marketing, our priorities seem to be messed up.
And, truth be told, they have been for a while.
What am I talking about? Where do we focus the bulk of our time and energy in social media marketing? If you’re like most brands, it’s probably spend in content creation and ads.
Think about how much work it takes for a company or agency to produce one Instagram post. Sometimes 5-7 hours. If you’re an agency billing a blended rate of $200 an hour that’s $1,400 per Insta post!
Or, what about advertising. Think about how much time we spend setting up social media ads, creating them and tracking them. I mean, it’s a full-time job on a lot of social media teams.
My guess, content creation and advertising probably take up at least 75% of our time as social media marketers.
Meanwhile, how much time do we spend on listening and community-building?
Definitely not as much as we should.
Here’s some evidence to back up my claim. According to a recent report from Meltwater/Social Media Today, 61% say social listening is a key part of their social media marketing strategy. And, 82% view it as a key component of annual planning. So clearly, social media marketers are SAYING listening is important.
However, in that same report, when asked what two factors are the most restrictive in terms of maximizing their social media listening practice, almost half of respondents said: Employee bandwidth and time.
Translation: We’re not prioritizing listening.
Think about community management. I don’t know how many audits I’ve done over the last 5 years where I’ve seen big, well-known brands completely ignoring customer comments in their Facebook, Insta and LinkedIn comment threads. Clearly, many brands are minimizing community management as well.
Why is the prioritization mix so off? Because we all kneel at the alter of the customer acquisition. Most companies are all about leads. Revenue.
So approaches that have a far less direct line of site to customer acquisition (listening, community building) get short shrift.
But, should they be getting THIS much short shrift? I feel like we should prioritize listening and community at least a little more, right? After all, good community building can be a key attribute of customer retention. And, that’s got dollar signs attached to it.
And social listening can be a key strategy to product innovation in some cases. That certainly can lead to more revenue for the organization.
Bottom line: We need to start prioritizing social listening and community management. We just have to. These are both absolute key strategies for any social media marketing team, yet they continue to be minimized by most.