How Much Time is Actually Needed for Social Media Marketing?

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and the myriad other social networks have quickly become a prominent part of every company’s marketing campaigns. Social media use has rapidly gone from zero to 60 over the past few years, with 63.7 percent of the American internet population—approximately 150 million people—accessing these platforms as of 2011, according to an eMarketer report.

In response, businesses are also upping the ante by integrating social media into their overarching marketing campaigns. A study from Regus suggests that, as of 2011, 43 percent of U.S. businesses use social networks to win over new customers. Separate research from IBM suggests the number of companies leveraging social media worldwide could triple over the next five years.

Social Media—A Valued Asset or a Time Sink?

However, social media marketing is still a relatively nascent channel compared to other online tools, such as search engines or email. Many companies have yet to come up with best practices that maximize return on investment for social media.For example, one area that many companies find challenging is devoting an appropriate amount of time to social media. One report from Message Medium and Ventureneer suggests that social media marketing can take more than 25 hours a week—that’s almost the equivalent of having a full-time employee devote all their working hours to managing social media campaigns.

“While many small businesses and nonprofits market online, very few have a firm grasp of the strategies, tactics, and tools to do it well in spite of the overload of how-to information,” explained Message Medium president Maisha Walker.

The challenge of allocating time becomes even more complex as the social media landscape continues to evolve. Over just the past year, businesses have had to adapt to the introduction of new social platforms—such as Pinterest and Instagram— while reacting to other waning platforms—MySpace comes to mind here. This means companies are having to juggle more platforms, all while trying to maintain brand consistency.

Automating Social Media

However, there are tools that can automate several aspects of social media marketing, essentially reducing much of the hands on time businesses have to give to their Facebook campaigns.

Fision’s distributed marketing solution, for example, has an extremely approachable social media marketing module that enables businesses to deliver compelling content that is sure to engage followers and fans alike. Fision users will be able to leverage the platform to create, schedule and execute social media marketing initiatives across a wide variety of platforms, ranging from Facebook to Twitter.

Moreover, because Fision was designed with user-friendliness in mind, these campaigns can be created in a matter of clicks, all while maintaining brand compliance with pre-approved assets. With Fision, marketers don’t need to manage all their accounts individually—they can create updates and push them to all their profiles simultaneously if they want to.

With Fision, it’s all about flexibility. Pre-approved messaging can also be adjusted on the fly to fit the specific needs of the company—content can be truncated to fit the 140-character constraints of Twitter or rolled out into long-form content. While Fision does allow for content to be posted across social accounts simultaneously, it can also be used to mix and match which content goes to what profile and when.