According to the 2018 Yellow Digital Report, 51% of small and medium Australian enterprises (SME) are using social media, which is an increase from last year’s 47%. However, with the many benefits of social media, this number is not enough.
Below is an infographic on a few key statistics on Australian SMEs and social media:
- 61% of SMEs on Facebook say they have increased sales because of the platform.
- Social media has a 100% higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing
- 23% use social media to research on products or services that they might want to buy
- 52% of research on social media led to a purchase at a physical shop
- 61% of research on social media led to an online purchase
- 46% of SMEs on Facebook say they have been able to hire more employees due to growth in demand since joining the platform
- 64% of people said they were more likely to trust brands if they interact positively with customers on social media
- If you’re targeting a 40-yo and below demographic, 98% of all Australians aged 25-54 years old are already on Facebook.
If you own or manage a business with 200 employees or less, being on social media should not just be an option for you. It is not just a source of additional revenue, but an integral part of any brand-building strategy.
How will SMEs benefit from Social Media?
Here is a list of ways that social media can benefit your business:
1. Significant savings on Marketing costs
For many small businesses, flyering is one of the most cost-effective marketing tools around. Print a few thousand flyers, and have someone distribute them in a strategic locations where it is legal and permissible. One option is to hire someone at minimum wage to distribute. For one week, this will cost you at least A$719.20 per week, and reach a maximum of 5,000 people (assuming 2 flyers per minute are distributed over a 40-hour week).
For the same budget on Facebook, you can reach 252,000 people in your city, while even targeting for demographics, residence and related interests. That’s more than 50x better reach than traditional flyering at the same cost.
Even comparing with high-volume letter box delivery services, to reach 252,000 doors will cost A$9,000, more than 12x higher than Facebook advertising. Not to mention the fact that with letter box delivery, you will not know if the recipient is within your target market.
In addition, social media advertising will allow you to post highly engaging content, such as high-definition graphics, videos, or attention-grabbing blog posts rather than the printer-reliant, static ads that flyers provide.
2. Improved search rankings
As your social media presence grows, not only will it increase your website traffic (and lead to more leads and sales), but your increased website traffic will also improve your search engine rankings organically. According to a recent study by Hootsuite, social media activity can improve search rankings by up to 12%, while advertised social media content can increase search rankings by 22%. This means your website can be seen more easily in related Google or Bing searches, and again bring more traffic (and sales) to your site.
3. High customer engagement
By giving your brand a voice on the social media landscape, it allows you to interact with your target market on a more personal way. And people like that personal touch.
64% of Australians said they were more likely to trust brands if they interact positively with customers on social media. And for those who have not yet interacted with your brand, your social media presence will help win new customers. 33% check out a brand’s social media presence before making their first online purchase from them.
4. Access to international markets
As the digital world is no longer confined by geographical limitations, social media allows businesses to reach a global audience. Aside from having the ability to geo-target your ads, the virality of your social media posts can and multiply its reach among your follower’s network from outside the borders as well.
59 per cent of Australian SMEs on Facebook believe the platform allows them to sell products or services in other cities, states, or countries. According to Kaylie Smith, Facebook’s Head of SMB for Australia and New Zealand, about 210 million people around the world are connected to an Australian business through Facebook.
5. Opportunity to conduct market research
At its most basic form of market research, by simply observing the interactions with your market and your content, you can already have an idea what resonates with them, and what doesn’t. You can also scale up the data mining to come up with solid market insights.
A prime example is how Dove leveraged on social media data to come up with a winning campaign. In 2014, they found out that women all over the world posted over 5 million negative tweets about themselves and their body image. In fact, they determined that women are two times as likely to tweet something negative about themselves as they are to tweet something positive about themselves. As a result, they launched the #SpeakBeautiful campaign, and they were able to reach 800 million impressions, 168,000 mentions with the hashtag, and 63% increase in sales.
What are the top social networks in Australia?
The top social networks to be present in will vary per industry. However, according to Hootsuite’s “Digital in 2018 in Australia” report, the following are the most active social networks in Australia this year:
- Facebook: 70% of all internet users in Australia
- YouTube: 68%
- Instagram: 34%
- Twitter: 20%
- Pinterest: 20%
- LinkedIn: 18%
- Reddit: 10%
What skills are needed to excel in social media management?
A capable social media manager should have the following basic skills:
- Graphic design - Creating and posting visually-appealing content on a regular basis would require that the social media manager has knowledge of graphic design tools and the skills necessary to use them well.
- Copywriting - The messaging of your posts should resonate well with your target market, and the precise choice of words should be a must in the copy development.
- Customer service orientation - As always, the customer should always be at the center of any marketer’s focus. The ability to relate to positive - and negative - feedback appropriately is necessary to developing a positive social media presence.
- SEO and Content Marketing - The social media manager may not be doing the blog writing or SEO himself, but a good appreciation of the two disciplines and the impact his work has on those will be very valuable.
- Social media advertising - It goes without saying that it is important for the social media manager to know how to navigate the ins and outs of advertising in the various social networks.
How do I setup my social media management?
You can opt do do it yourself, or ask one of your managers to handle the additional load. With small businesses, 72% of business owners or managers handle it themselves, while in medium enterprises, this job falls to the marketing staff 47% of the time.
However, not getting a social media specialist is not recommended. It takes valuable time away from the marketing staff (who may not have the requisite skills needed to do well in social media) from other key marketing initiatives, or worse, from the business owner or manager himself, who needs to oversee highly strategic, business-building activities.
What are your options?
- Social Media Agency: A social media agency will have the full line-up of skills and experience to get your social media presence up and running. However, engaging a social media agency can be very expensive as usually fees are charged for every social network and campaign you run. It is typical for Social Media Agencies to charge around A$3,000/mo. as a baseline on retainer fees, plus additional fees for every project.
- Freelancers: Getting a freelance social media manager can be cost-effective.option for you. But having a part-time freelancer who may not be available at all times may not suit many preferences.Freelance social media managers to would normally charge around A$2,800/ mo. for basic social media management.
- In-house Social Media Manager: Having a full-time social media manager on your team is usually the preferred option for medium and large enterprises. This allows the company full control on strategy development and execution. The average salary of an in-house social media manager in Australia is A$4,903.5/mo.
- Offshore Social Media Manager: You may opt to hire a full-time social media manager in-house, but one that is actually working remotely from a lower-cost labour market. Countries like the Philippines offer comparable social media talent with excellent English proficiency, while saving up to 75% on labour costs. Based on our current rates, the cost of a skilled full-time Social Media Manager working remotely from the Philippines is A$1,450/mo on average.
Why does an offshore social media manager cost so low?
In the Philippines, where Kinetic recruits highly-skilled remote professionals, the cost of living is much lower (about 61% lower, on average) as compared to Australia. This results in a lower salary structure for Filipino professionals, as compared with local Australian talent.
Currently, Kinetic has access to more than 4 million candidates through various databases, with close to 500,000 resumes in various fields and industries on hand.
Kinetic Innovative Staffing has provided more than 300 Australian companies with professional remote staff, such as social media managers, since 2013. Remote staffing can provide Australian businesses with the right talent while experiencing up to 75% savings on labour costs.
Get in touch here if you would like to know more about social media managers working remotely from the Philippines.