Small and medium-sized companies can save a lot of advertising budget through social media marketing, because a once initiated community is constant. Community, advertising, customer service and personnel search, with their own social media account companies can only win. In an interview with [ DEMNÄCHST ] today we philosophized about SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) and their opportunities and risks in social media marketing. Here is an excerpt of 5 exciting questions for owner and social media expert Stephan M. Czaja.
Social media marketing for small and medium-sized enterprises
Why is presence on social media channels helpful for SMEs, what can they achieve?
The presence of small and medium-sized enterprises on social channels is so important because they save a lot of money! In the past, every small company had to print flyers and waste a lot of time trying to convince people to buy new products.
Today, as a small company, even in the countryside or without large financial resources, you can reach the whole world. Social networks offer 1:1 communication, as if you had a local business in every city in the world. Nuremberg, Munich, Berlin, Hamburg, no distance is far and every communication is only a mouse click away.
You can contact your fans, ask questions or give us suggestions. Otherwise complex and Theurer Internet sites can be considerably slimmer, since a lot of brand communication can be covered via the social networks.
Social media is not only an excellent tool for marketing, but also for PR: We often reach our customers faster than any press article could do. New products, announcements and job postings for personnel recruitment – free of charge. Social media channels bundle different marketing tools, because they are much more extensive than many might think.
As an online shop we can e.g. connect our Facebook page with Instagram. We can set up an online shop on Facebook, link the products to Instagram and our followers can shop on Instagram. As an online shop you can even work across networks.
Which platform is the best?
What small and medium-sized enterprises should pay attention to is the choice of social network. Because the support costs time and should be regular, preferably daily. New postings, comments, small and large graphics, who wants to make his social media management profitable, has to invest work every day and give the employees the necessary resources for it.
In the past you could say you were on Facebook, that’s enough. Today the right social network is no longer so easy to define. In short, however, Facebook is and remains the classic and with the largest number of users, even top dog. Conversely, on Facebook you also have to invest advertising budget, organic reach is only difficult to achieve.
Instagram is easier to achieve organic reach, but lacks some of the features you have on Facebook, the social network. This includes direct links, e.g. to our online shop via https://www.onlineshop.com/xy. Without links, we can sell less. Instagram is a must for companies in the fashion and lifestyle industries in particular.
Companies with the necessary capacities and in particular sufficient interest can support a YouTube channel. However, creating content for YouTube is much more time consuming and requires good concepts that work on YouTube. Most medium-sized and large companies cover this area through their social media agency.
The investment is worthwhile! Because the reach that small and medium-sized companies are building up here is permanently available. Our business grows with each new follower by one potential visitor per day.
When assessing the quality of the reach on the individual networks, it can be said that the more time it takes to create the content, the better the number of fans. On Facebook, content is relatively easy to create, you can even share links or other websites without having to create content yourself. However, the organic range is very small. If your Facebook account has 10,000 fans, a single organic posting may reach only 100 or 200 people. Practically nothing.
On Instagram, you usually have to take much more time for interesting content, photos and videos. The content must also be interesting and always new to generate followers for your Instagram account. With a channel of 10,000 fans you can reach about 1,000 people. YouTube is currently the top class, with about 10,000 fans you can actually reach 7,000 or 8,000 people here. But the creation of the contents is very complex, because it needs not only a video production, but also the moderation, as well as a good storyboard.
How to estimate the three big social networks in 2018
YouTube and Pinterest are considered an insider tip, especially as a source for backlinks in the field of search engine optimization. YouTube is therefore also the most expensive source for influencers and bloggers on social networks in terms of overall reach. Those who can place their links in the descriptions of well-running videos, e.g. by influencer marketing or by creating their own content.
On Pinterest you create different galleries with photos. The photos then have individual titles and descriptions. But also the galleries have individual titles and descriptions. Whoever collects a large number of galleries here and meets an interesting and not too overcrowded industry can collect good links for their own project.
Twitter is only of interest to large corporations and public figures. For small and medium-sized businesses, Twitter is generally irrelevant. In relation to success and effort you should not waste time with Twitter. Unless it is a large corporation or a public figure, since tweets are often included in the media.
In short, Facebook with the right advertising budget, Instagram with a creative person and enough time and YouTube if you are a leader and have a lot of commitment of your own! YouTube costs a lot of time and, unlike Facebook and Instagram, is not so easy to check, simply because of the time-consuming content production and the resulting rare postings. But YouTube offers a strong and above all lasting tool, since good videos are placed still after years highly by the algorithm of the video search machine. So anyone who creates an evergreen in a theme, e.g. also for videos such as “How to repair your toilet seat” or “Winter tyres – making cars winterproof”, can market their product absolutely free of charge for many years. Here lies the great magic of YouTube.
How much time / manpower does a small company need if it wants to become active in social media?
When working in social media networks, a daily time window should be taken into account. A big secret trick of social media agencies is the use of online tools to plan content in advance. So a social media manager can plan the content in advance every 14 days and can concentrate on other things in everyday life, e.g. designs, shootings, interaction with the fans, depending on how big one’s own social media marketing is built up. For small companies, time can of course also be used for other work processes. Therefore, the A&O for your Social Media Manager, use an online tool to plan your postings in advance.
If you are in social media marketing, you have to leave yourself or your employee 2 hours a day. Depending on the company, one can create simple content, from everyday life or may have to have higher quality things made, e.g. through photo shootings with models and products.
Depending on this, of course, there are also a few more working hours or even days. Who can afford it, should take a full time Social Media Manager, because in the end it concerns more than only the support. There are so many other functions that a social media manager can perform in the company, only advertisements are so effective that the investment is worth the time for the first optimization.
With a full-time social media manager relationship, a medium-sized company has already done a great job. On top would come then of course still medium-size enterprises, which want more than only support and a little advertisements. This is about brand cooperations, collaboration with influencers and bloggers, but also more extensive social media campaigns that require additional budgets. In the ratio of two hours a day to full time, is the optimal time management for social media marketing in small to medium-sized companies.
What to look out for when interviewing your new Social Media Manager?
It is important to show sufficient references during the job interview and in particular to have a few details of the project explained. Your new social media manager should have channel management skills. He or she should also have looked after at least one channel with over 10,000 fans. He or she should be familiar with designs but also with the creation of creative content. He or she should master the creation of advertisements and the targeting of target groups contained therein while asleep.
You are also welcome to ask for one or the other detail, especially advertisements, as an online shop: What was the best click price and how did you reach it? This is specifically about split testing of different advertisements, so that the most effective one can be filtered out according to a certain amount of advertising budget. Who can answer all these topics in the job interview as Social Media Manager sovereign and in detail, should be able to help you!
And last but not least: Which tools do you recommend and why is it generally helpful to use which tools? (I was thinking about Hootsuite, Canva, Buffer, Pablo, Google Alerts and Fanpage Karma, but maybe you still have a great idea?)
There are many good recommendations in the area of online tools for social media activities. Definitely there should always be a tool to plan content in advance. Like hootsuite or buffer. With this you can plan your social media postings in advance. This not only helps to save time every day, because every process has to be repeated daily, but also possible sick days of the Social Media Manager as well as holidays can be cleverly avoided.
In addition, there are even more special tools for the individual social networks, e.g. monitoring tasks for Facebook YouTube or Instagram. There are several good recommendations for this, too; one of these tools should definitely be used if you want to evaluate the success of activities in social networks. For Facebook and YouTube there are programs like Radrly or Echbot, for Instagram and Influencer programs like Social Analytics One.