There’s an old saying in the motorcycle community that goes:
“If you have a $10 head, buy a $10 helmet.”
Basically, the statement speaks to assigning value to the things that you find useful. In this case…an intact brain.
The same concept can certainly be applied to other things that you want or value in life and it certainly applies to the development and execution a social media strategy. With respect to social media, I’d adjust the statement to say:
“If you want a social media strategy that performs, dedicate resources that will perform.”
Unfortunately, all to often, I get asked how to “do social media on a shoestring budget” or how to “get involved in our community with little or no investment” and the answer is generally not to even try. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying not to try social media. I’m saying not to try social media without dedicating the appropriate level of budget and resources.
Yes…there are still those out there that think social media is a fad, a trend or is something that is free. They don’t understand that it takes time to listen, engage and evolve and that time should have a value assigned to it.
To see what I mean, take a look at the infographic below created by the fine folks at Intersection Consulting. The infographic helps break down some of the key components of any social media strategy/execution plan and allocates estimated time requirements for completing the tasks. Everything from listening to content creation to the infamous “Sh!t happens” category.
So…if you’re still wondering how to create a social media strategy for free, the answer is simple. Take a few minutes to think about your time and how much it is worth. Set an hourly rate that you would charge your clients for the work you do.
Now…reset that rate to $0 per hour. If your time and energy (and that of your employees) is worth $0/hour then you can definitely create and execute a social media strategy for free. If, however, your time and energy is worth anything more than that…reset your expectations. There is no such thing as a free social media strategy. What you put into it is what you will get out of it.
Ever been asked to “do social for free” or “on the cheap”? I’d love to hear stories and how you reset expectations.