How Much Time Will You Spend in Your First Year on Social Media?

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Getting started with social media can be a daunting task, especially if you are not quite familiar with the ins and outs of how the various platforms work, and what the “right” way to use each social media channel might be.

The first year is especially tough — and when you’ve been assigned the task of getting your bank’s social media channels up and running, you might be unsure of what lies ahead; especially when it comes to time management.

The amount of time each person spends in his or her first year handling the job of social media manager can vary, but we’re here to give you a guide as to what you can expect. Our time estimates are based on someone who has other tasks in addition to social media management; the person who can’t dedicate all eight hours of the work day to posting and evaluating the social landscape. Remember — social media, like any other task, will gladly take as much time as you give it. So plan ahead! Avoid getting sucked into the abyss — it can be quite an interesting and entertainment place, but when it comes to social media for business, staying focused is key.

Take the time to strategize. Read up on our Social Media Strategy guide to get a sense of what kind of “plans” you might want to have in place for your social media presence. If you’re focused and direct, you should spend about 5 to 10 hours of time putting your social media strategy into place. (This may take longer for those who are less familiar with social media’s role in the marketing mix. We do advise putting in some research time, and reading up on the latest trends to stay up-to-date!)

Set up your accounts. Depending on the number of accounts you want to set up, the amount of time you spend on this can vary. Use Gremlin Social’s Get Started Guide to learn the step-by-step process for setting up your accounts.

Organize your calendar. Spend about 2-3 hours a month planning the following month’s social posting. You can leave some room for adding “timely” posts, as these tend to come up day to day when something newsworthy comes along.

Dedicate time to communicating with your audience. Spend about 15-20 minutes a day conversing with your audience. Whether you’re responding to questions, thanking customers for a compliment, or initiating conversation with a potential customer — it’s a great way to boost engagement by showing there’s a live person behind the account.

Report Regularly. Set regular checkpoints to determine whether your social media posts and campaigns are effective. While you might think a certain type of post sent at a particular time of day makes sense, the actual numbers may surprise you. Reporting may take a few hours, as you will want to spend some time synthesizing the information.

Organization is the key to making the most of your first year. Have an idea of the kinds of check-ins you want to perform on a monthly, quarterly, and yearly basis, so you can schedule them in your calendar to keep you honest when the day for reporting pops up. Write up the benchmarks and questions you will want to answer ahead of time, so you don’t waste valuable moments remembering what it is you want to report later.

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