I just saw the results of a survey of some 350 marketers, and the following finding jumped out at me (and hit me upside the head):
Marketers spend an average of 19 hours a week on social media sites.
I’m going to assume that hard-working marketers put in more than a 40-hour week, so let’s call it a 50-hour week. That means that the average marketing professional is spending about 40% of his or her time on social media sites.
Is social media driving 40% of your firm’s opportunity, revenue and profitability? Are all the other marketing channels that you operate in running that smoothly that you can afford to spend a pretty big chunk of your time on social media?
Seth Godin wrote a blog post a couple of years ago in which he commented:
I had breakfast today with a senior executive who estimates she spends more than 30% of her time in internal meetings. My guess is that many marketers (who seem to go to more meetings than most people) might envy a number that low.
If the 30% number is low, what is it–40%? That would mean the average marketer spends as much time on social media sites as s/he does in meetings. In other words, 80% of their time is spent getting nothing done (just kidding, or maybe not).
I don’t think this is what The Financial Brand was talking about when it said “social media is a waste of time”, but if you tell me that 40% of your time is well spent monitoring conversations on Twitter or Facebook, or reading blogs, I’ll tell you that you should be in the minority of marketers, not the average.