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I just found some hard data on the costs of social media efforts, and had to post a follow-up to my post last week on social media costs (5 signs that you’re burning money on social media).
To make social media marketing work, you either have to do it in-house or hire outside help. Most businesses use a combination of the models.
In-house efforts incur an opportunity cost—that time could be spent on other work. In technology start-ups, that time is a rare and valued commodity. You also need the right expertise – as a friend just pointed out, social media needs the same care and attention to quality as your other collateral efforts.
So many businesses turn to consultants and agencies to fill the gap. Mack Collier has posted some great research on his blog (MackCollier.com) about range of costs and typical costs for various social media efforts using consultants or agencies. For example, a consultant or agency might charge between $2000-$4000 per month to manage your Twitter presence, and $3000-$5000 per month to manage your blog.
These numbers can help you create a ballpark as you determine where and how social media fits in your overall marketing plans.