With so much content on the Internet, social media marketing has become its own full-time job. Often, managing multiple social media accounts requires queuing up content, setting accounts to automatically post and using third-party websites and apps to sync your accounts and make managing multiple accounts more streamlined. Manual management is a great way to have total control, but according to experts, it’s not always practical.

At what point does it make more sense for a business to outsource their PR and social media needs to firms? “Usually, it makes sense from day one to hire an expert to at least get you set up on the best sites for your business,” says Jim Hobson, president of E-Platform Marketing LLC in Marietta. If you have limited time and want a truly robust effort, you should consider hiring a social media management agency. “It’s important to remember that the posting is simply a task—developing a strategy for content development and engagement is where professionals can make a world of difference. The No. 1 pitfall for the do-it-yourself business is letting the initial enthusiasm fall to where posting is increasingly less often and less inspired.”

For Traton Homes, a homebuilding firm in Marietta, outsourcing their social media has allowed them to increase their company reach, create engagement with both current and prospective customers and convey their position as a leader in their industry. Kimberly Garwood, director of marketing for Traton, says, “While anyone can create a Facebook page, unless you have an in-house expert with a large amount of time to devote to social media, it is best to outsource.” Running contests, promotions and Facebook ads have helped Traton conduct award-winning campaigns and significantly increase their social traffic. It all comes down to what you in your business have the time to put out into the social stratosphere. “Social media is an opportunity for your brand to be real,” KSU Social Media Specialist Cheryl Rodewig says. “Those Instagram shots of an office party or that impromptu Vine of a happy customer in your store can give your fans insight into who you really are. It’s hard to outsource authenticity.”

“The best quick advice I can offer is to roll up your sleeves and get started,” says Hobson. Protect your company name and brand by claiming your name on the top 50 social media sites, commit yourself to a set time to post content and complete your business profile across the web. “Engage users with friendly, non-sales content. Don’t expect social media to be a lead generator,” Hobson adds. “Build your brand, establish trust and good things will follow.”