Creating a Successful Social Media Budget: Expert Tips

social media budget

Regardless of whether you’re a big company, a solo entrepreneur, or a fresh startup on the brink of a breakthrough, it’s essential to ensure that your investment in social marketing yields results. That’s where a well-structured social media budget can make all the difference. Each business needs a solid social strategy supported by an allocated social media budget. Discover the appropriate amount to invest in your social media marketing efforts.

Let’s dive in now!

What exactly is a social media budget?

A social media budget is a plan that outlines how much you intend to spend on your social media activities within a specific period—whether it’s a month, a quarter, or a year. It helps you understand the costs associated with running your social media campaigns more clearly.

NotionChefs Social Media Performance Tracker | Notion Everything

Usually, this budget information is organized in a spreadsheet, although you might also come across social media budgets created in tools like Notion or Airtable. Regardless of the platform you use, the key is to present the data in a way that’s easy to grasp. This allows you to analyze where your money is going and whether you’re getting a good return on your investment.

How to Make a social media budget?

Know your goals

Every effective marketing strategy begins with clear and well-defined goals. After all, it’s tough to decide on a suitable social media budget if you’re not sure what you’re aiming for.

We’ve got a comprehensive blog post on goal-setting to assist you in this budgeting phase, but here’s the main idea. When crafting goals, especially for budgeting purposes, they should be SMART:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Timely

Goals that are specific and measurable help you assess the impact of your social media efforts, allowing you to allocate the right funds for each desired outcome.

Moreover, measurable goals enable you to track and report your progress, giving you the ability to adjust your budget as needed to support the strategies that are proving effective for your business.

Examine your previous months’ (or years’, or quarters’) spending

Before you start creating a budget, it’s important to have a clear grasp of the current situation. How much are you currently spending on social media? If you’ve never made a budget before, you might not have a full picture.

If you’re already generating social media reports, you’re in luck—these reports can provide you with valuable information. But if you’re not, consider conducting a social media audit as a helpful first step. This will give you insights into where you’re currently investing your time and resources on social media platforms.

Afterward, make a comprehensive list of all your specific social marketing expenses from previous periods, organized according to the categories mentioned earlier. This will give you a solid starting point to understand your current financial landscape.

Create or revise your social media strategy

You’re armed with valuable initial insights to lay the foundation for your social media strategy. This will serve as your roadmap for achieving the goals you outlined in step 1.

By analyzing past expenses and the efforts needed to meet those goals, you can determine a reasonable budget allocation for each aspect of your strategy moving forward.

Incorporating a concise overview of your social strategy is a smart move for your social media budget proposal. It showcases that your funding requests are backed by real data and thorough planning.

Make a budget proposal for your manager

Now it’s time to dive into the technical details. The good news is, we’ve gone ahead and crafted a social media budget proposal template for your convenience. All you need to do is input the specific details relevant to your business and your plans.

If you’d rather create your own social media budget calculator, consider using an Excel Spreadsheet or Google Sheet. Here’s what to include:

1. Category: List sections for content creation, software, etc. For each relevant item mentioned earlier, break it down into individual line items for specific expenses.

2. In-house vs. outsourced expense: Differentiate between in-house costs, which stem from staff time dedicated to social media, and outsourced expenses, covering external payments such as consulting or ad fees. For categories with both types of expenses, separate columns should be used.

3. Spend per item: Calculate the combined internal and outsourced costs for each line item and category. Present this as both an overall dollar amount and a percentage of your total budget. This clarity helps both you and your superiors understand your resource allocation.

4. Ongoing or one-time expense: Highlight any one-time expenses in your budget that deliver long-term value. Make sure to indicate that these are singular requests, providing context for your superiors. For instance, if you’re purchasing equipment to set up a video studio, use separate columns to tally one-off and ongoing expenses.

5. Total ask: Sum it all up to present the grand total of your funding request.

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