Social Media - Friend or Foe?

I’ll admit it - this is a conflicting topic for me. As part of our original business plan we intended to offer social media management for marine businesses. It seemed logical that we could help businesses circulate the content that we were already producing for them, especially those that don’t have a consistent presence on social media or may not be following the current best practices. 

It’s time consuming to maintain and hard to justify hiring an additional employee or adding onto the workload of an existing one to manage it. Add to that the fact that there are several platforms to use, all of which are constantly changing their algorithms and rapidly growing in the noise level (competition), and it makes perfect sense as to why the social media feeds for most marine businesses are quiet. 

So, if we see a gap, why did we eventually decided to steer away from social media management? 

Automation

Software is starting to automate the social media management process quickly and easily. Platforms like Buffer (highly recommended!) can help you set up weeks of posts across platforms in a short amount of time. This process can/will be done by VAs or bots without needing any sort of relationship with or deep understanding of your business. 

Ambiguity

There are many social platforms to use, each with their own tips and tricks, varying user base, and algorithms. No one really knows the best day, time, or amount of posts to put up, and it takes a lot of trial and error to decide what works best for each business. There is no such thing as a social media “expert” – the technology changes rapidly and without warning, and it’s all about finding the time to learn and practice the trends as they come and go.

Social Customer Care

Offering interesting and engaging content should inspire the audience to interact in some way by asking questions, answering a call to action, or sharing it with friends. The business should be there immediately to get involved in the conversation, responding to both negative and positive feedback.

This responsibility is called social customer care and lies solely with the business. Sprout Social has a great article on this topic that explains more about what your business should be prepared for when interacting on social. There really is no substitute or shortcut for this important piece of the social puzzle.

Ownership

Social media is fleeting. What you post today will be forgotten tomorrow… or more likely in 5 minutes. One of the goals of social media marketing is to offer enough value and intrigue to move a potential customer to your website (and eventually, you). Your website is yours. You own it and have complete control over what happens there. 

If Facebook falls over tomorrow, you will ideally have a solid base of potential and existing customers who still love visiting your website for the latest updates, news, blog posts, product videos, photos, and so on. This ownership of exciting content that provides infinite value is exactly why we’ve chosen to focus solely on creating it.  


With all of that said, I do believe social media is a fantastic marketing tool. It’s where people are spending their time and attention, and it’s where we design our content to be shared. Ultimately we’ve chosen to put our energy into creating content that ignites interest and excitement for marine businesses. 

What’s your opinion on social media management? Do you prefer to outsource to a knowledgeable team, assign it to a current employee(s), manage it yourself, or is it not even a current priority? We’d love to know your thoughts!

-Jenna