Should You Hire an Employee or Agency to Manage Social Media?

In order to grow your business and reap the benefits of social media marketing, you will need to make a time commitment. Because most business owners and marketing directors wear multiple hats in their business, social media is often neglected. As a result, most businesses will have to make an important decision about their social media presence.

Should you hire an employee to manage your social media presence or hire a social media marketing agency?

The honest answer is that it depends. Employees will normally have more knowledge of your company, while agencies will have more knowledge of how to use social media to accomplish your goals. When trying to make a decision, you should consider the following:

  1. Costs: Is it more cost-efficient to hire an employee or agency?
  2. Results: Who is more capable of producing the results you are looking for?
  3. Industry Experience: Who has more experience in working in your industry?
  4. Time: Is it worth your employees time or could they be spending it elsewhere?
  5. Training: How much training, equipment and resources will be required?
  6. Consistency: Who will be the most consistent with social media activity?

Your answers to these questions may vary based on what your business is and what industry you are in. However, we have found the following to be true in most instances.

Employees will have more knowledge of your company.

The main benefit of hiring an in-house employee to manage social media is that employees are normally more involved with the daily operations. They will be able to capture images and content of your business on-site. They are normally more updated with company news.

This is one of the limitations of hiring an agency. However, there are many ways to get around this, which ultimately comes down to having good communication with your social media agency.

It is 3x more expensive to hire an employee.

According to Glassdoor, full-time social media managers make an average salary of $51,613. An effective social media marketing program at an agency would cost $15,000 to $18,000 per year at the right company. With a salary that is 3x more expensive, you would also have to consider additional costs associated with social media training, software, applications, equipment, employee turnover, and payroll taxes.

Interns and part-time employees are an option. However, they require a lot of guidance, time, training, and hands-on management to be able to execute your social media strategy effectively. Employee turnover is also more frequent amongst part-time employees, which brings us to the next point.

Employee turnover and training is a headache.

As social media continues to evolve, ongoing social media training is a necessity for social media managers. But what happens when your social media manager resigns?

All of the training you’ve spent developing your employee will go down the drain. The messaging, tone, and quality of your brand will be at risk. In addition, you will have to start from scratch and train a new employee about your company and how to use social media for marketing.

By hiring a social media company, you do not have to worry about employee turnover or training. In fact, most agencies will use more advanced training platforms and techniques.

Employees are sometimes overwhelmed with too many tasks for social media.

We have found that many employees who are given social media management tasks also have many other responsibilities. In cases like this, social media normally falls back to the end of their to-do list. This may cause inconsistency in your social media activity, decreased results, and ultimately missed opportunities to grow your brand on social media.

Social media agencies are more results-focused.

In comparison to social media managers, agencies are more results-focused. Why? Because the success of their agency will be depend on the results that they are able to provide for you through social media. You want to grow your business through social media marketing and agencies want to keep their clients by providing effective social media marketing solutions. In this scenario, both goals are aligned.

Social media agencies have more experience with social media.

The benefit of hiring an agency that specializes in a specific marketing function, such as social media, is the ability to leverage their experience. Niche-specific agencies eat, sleep, and breathe the latest news and strategies in their niche. They work in team environments of multiple social media specialists, with decades of combined experience in the field. The amount of expertise, support, and knowledge available to agencies does not compare to what a single full-time employee can provide.

Social media agencies have more resources and tools for social media.

In addition to high quality personnel, social media agencies will also have more advanced technology, resources, and tools available for social media marketing. You can expect a social media agency to already have design software, content distribution applications, access to data, and in-depth analytics to showcase return on investment.