As you know Social media is one of the most hotly debated topics anywhere. There is no question about the power of it and what it can do. However one of the biggest questions is whether to handle it In-House or pass it on your Internet Marketing agency to handle it as they are the “experts”.
If you choose to pass it to an agency here are the pro and cons.
-They know how to use the tools to the get the job done most efficiently.
-They have implemented and used Social Media tactics in other businesses and know what works and what doesn’t.
-They can help you create a viral campaign and setup the basics so that all the required information is captured properly.
-You can learn from their method to the madness.
-They will have content planned out for you.
-You will not have to devote a lot of resources in managing their work.
-Can help you in building a social media strategy.
-Your Revenue Manager will have an expert to talk to about these channels.
-You will have to tell them what is going on within your business.
-If they are in a different city then you will the one educating them about your city.
-The voice of your business and your social media efforts maybe very different. You will have to spend time in educating your IM partners on how your brand works and decide upon the language to use when “talking” on these channels.
-You will not learn about the tools or how to use them efficiently and will never develop the expertise In-House.
-It can be quite pricey to have it managed externally and when you don’t know the channel then it becomes difficult to hold them accountable.
-They are not the experts in dealing with guest issues.
What if you do it In-house?
-You know about everything happening on this channel. The channel will never be in the background and will always have a constant focus.
-You know what is going on within the business and will be able to communicate it to the audience instantly.
-You know the voice of your business.
-If there are guest complains then you will be able to address it immediately and you know how to resolve it.
-Keeping it In-house will contribute to building a social culture and it will be a long term approach.
-Once you know the tools and learn what works and how to manage things online it will become natural.
-You will have to spend a lot of time learning the skills and tools.
-You don’t know how to be efficient at it and spend way too much time on it.
-If it doesn’t come naturally to you. The audience can tell whenever this is the case.
-You don’t know how to grow your audience and try out things that you hear are working these days.
Both the approaches have its pros & cons but think about what would work in the long term?
The one way to approach this is if you are not sure what to do, get an agency involved in the beginning. Get them to do all the heavy lifting.
Work with them in these areas:
-Building and implementing your social media strategy.
-Learn about the type of posts they will have.
-Invest in working with them to learn the tools and the mindset behind managing this channel.
-Designing a background/welcome page for Facebook and Twitter
-Get yourself familiarized with the various reports and metrics for measuring success.
-How do they plan to increase followers? Learn viral marketing tactics.
Once you are confident about the above then you can bring the operation In-House and run with it.
If you think you can handle yourself then go for it and learn from the many free resources that available online. Remember to test things and if it doesn’t work move on.
Your audience engagement level will tell if you are doing things right or not.