You’ve probably heard experts say that you only need to put 15 minutes aside each day for your social media efforts but how true is this really?
How Much Can You Realistically Do in 15 Minutes?
Let’s face it: 15 minutes is not a very long window of opportunity and it doesn’t give you much time to go much beyond putting out your planned posts, even if you schedule them for the coming day.
Assuming that you’re not just pushing out glorified sales messages all the time, you’re also going to need time to curate content from other sources that will add value for your audience. This means looking for third party content that will inform and engage your fans and help them to be invested in your brand. Doing this thoroughly every day will likely take all of your alloted 15 minutes and realistically, it could take longer than this if you’re choosing content that will work well for each network. What works for your audience on Facebook won’t necessarily perform well on Twitter so you’re probably going to need to spend a bit of extra time selecting types of content that you know has a better chance of engaging your followers on that particular platform.
Why You’re Going to Need Longer Than 15 Minutes
Curating relevant content isn’t the only task that you’re going to struggle to fit into a 15 minute “social media” window. Interacting with your followers, responding to customer service questions and enquiries and generally being a sociable brand that people will want to engage with just isn’t going to happen if you’re only spending a maximum of 15 minutes per day on your social media.
A fairly established brand that is making a big effort to be approachable on social media will have lots of opportunities to engage with fans, whether this is through answering their service/product related messages or responding to their comments on posts. If you can factor interactions into a quarter of an hour and share a mixture of useful content from yourself and other people, it’s fair to say that you’re not using social media as well as you could. The bigger brands often have dedicated customer service accounts due to the amount of enquiries that they field in the average day but even a relatively small brand could find themselves needing to do more in terms of customer support than they can realistically manage in such a short window of time, especially if they’re using social media well.
Failing to acknowledge your audience and not answering their queries can turn them off your brand in favour of a competitor but many brands still don’t recognise the importance and value of strong and timely customer service. When a potential customer contacts you for the first time on social media, you may not be the only brand that they are considering using and a fairly quick response that tells them what they need to know can mean that you actually make the sale – especially if your competitors are lax on the customer service front.
Many brands don’t realise that they need to “warm up” potential customers before they are likely to buy from them, and this can involve interacting with a lot of posts and asking questions about products before they commit. If you’re only pushing out sales messages and aren’t taking the time to engage with your audience, there’s a good chance that fans will unfollow you and never get as far as buying from you.
What If You Don’t Have Enough Time?
Hopefully by now, you understand the benefits of spending more than just 15 minutes on your social media efforts. Trouble is, you probably bought into the whole “15 minutes only” advice because you don’t have a lot of additional time to spare away from the nitty gritty of running your business. This might feel like a catch-22 situation in which you know you ought to spend more time on your social media but you’re scared of stretching yourself too thinly if you do so.
One option you might want to think about is outsourcing some or all of our social media efforts to a social media manager. This lets you save time and stress, and you can be confident that engaging social media content will be posted regularly and that it offers value and interest for your audience. Worried that someone else won’t be able to replicate your brand’s voice? The best social media managers will be able to post engaging content that is genuinely useful for your fans and speak to them in your brand’s voice. Even if you don’t really have a voice right now, they can help you to find one that works for your brand. Handing over partial or total control of your social media accounts isn’t as scary as it might seem.
Worried that someone else won’t be able to replicate your brand’s voice? The best social media managers will be able to post engaging content that is genuinely useful for your fans and speak to them in your brand’s voice. Even if you don’t really have a voice right now, they can help you to find one that works for your brand. Handing over partial or total control of your social media accounts isn’t as scary as it might seem.
Handing over partial or total control of your social media accounts isn’t as scary as it might seem. A social media manager will work with you to create a content plan before they officially start working on them so you’ll know what kind of content is going to be posted and how they’ll interact with your followers. Tools like HootSuite can make it easy for you to work together on the customer service side of things, and you can be “assigned” any messages that can’t be answered by your social media manager without confirmation or elaboration from yourself before they respond.
How I Can Help
If your business needs some support with their social media or blogging, get in touch with me to discuss how I could help!
I’ve worked with a range of brands to help them to get targeted followers (that are genuinely interested in the type of products/services they offer), drive traffic back to their website, attract new leads and generally be more productive on social media. I’ve got experience in the pet care, food, tourism, digital marketing, insurance and charity sectors in particular.
Take a look at my Social Media Management page for more details on my packages and prices.