Social Media Management Pricing: What Are the Costs in 2023?

Social media monitoring service
Sabrina Dougall

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If you've ever wondered, “How much does social media marketing cost in 2023?” a standard social media management package will cost $750 per month and cover Facebook and Instagram. Hiring a freelancer to manage your social media will cost between $35 to $350 per hour, depending on the level of expertise you're looking for.

Or, using a DIY social media management software tool, such as Planable, will cost you anything from around $5 to $170 a month (or even $0 for a very limited, basic free plan!).

The end price will always depend on exactly what you need. We've used data from the tail end of 2022 to guide you about social media management costs in 2023.

As businesses recover from the Covid-19 pandemic, and struggle through a recession, growing your sales is more important than ever. Social media outreach can be an effective tool for hooking new customers and strengthening the loyalty of existing ones.

In this article, we'll explain how much social media management costs, breaking down the price of various services you can afford with your budget, as well as the costs of DIY social media management platforms.

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Social media management platforms let you take control of your social marketing – Planable is our top pick, and you can try it for free

How Much Does Social Media Marketing Cost?

You have two options here. You can either work with a social media management company, which typically charge monthly, or you can hire a freelancer, who usually charge by the hour. Below, we outline the average cost of both options.

Social Media Marketing Company Costs

The services of a social media marketing firm can come in anywhere between $50-$300 per hour depending on the breadth of services you're looking for.

Taking digital marketing firm BrandLyft for an example. They've received five-star customer reviews from the majority of their clients. Let's look at some quick-fire stats:

  • Hourly charge: $50-$99
  • Client focus: 80% small business (<$10M)
  • Cost of a four-month advertising and marketing project in 2021: $10,000-$49,999
  • Cost of a five-month digital marketing project including social media in 2021: <$10,000

Pricing may not always be on an hourly or per-project basis. Some social media marketing companies offer monthly price packages for a standard set of service. This can take a weight off your shoulders as you can easily plan month-to-month budgets this way.

Here are some examples of typical monthly costs for social media marketing companies with good reputations:

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Lyfe Marketing

KJS Marketing

Firebelly Marketing

Price Range

$750-$1,550+ per month

Price Range


Price Range


Key Features
  • Content creation for Facebook, Instagram, TikTok
  • 12-20 posts monthly
  • 10 comment responses daily
  • Campaign strategy
  • Paid ads management
Key Features
  • Content creation: LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook
  • Develop brand voice
  • Content scheduling
  • Respond to comments
  • Adapt according to analytics
Key Features
  • Customer responses
  • Paid posts
  • Tailored content calendars
  • Monthly reports

Price varies according to number of social channels and publishing frequency

Social Media Marketing Temp, Part Time and Freelancer Costs

These days it's easy to find peer-reviewed social media managers offering freelance services through platforms like UpWork and Fiverr. In researching these prices, we included top-rated and vetted freelance professionals endorsed by their respective platforms as reliable for quality and punctuality.

Highly-rated social media managers charge can charge anywhere in the range of $35 to $350 per hour, though most fall between $50-$85 hourly.

You can always find someone willing to do the work for less money, but buyer beware of poor quality marketing which could actually harm your business reputation.

You can use specialist agencies offer an even more thorough level of vetting and will match you to a specific pool of professionals according to your business' needs. For example, MarketerHire, which has a $1,500 minimum monthly spend requirement.

HubSpot social media marketing graph
Social media is the main marketing channel for companies this year. Graph: HubSpot State of Inbound Marketing Trends 2022

What Would it Cost to do Social Media Marketing Myself?

The first cost you've got to consider if doing social media marketing in-house is the staff time; the upkeep of one social media channel ideally requires an hour of concentrated work per day. If you're willing to commit the time to posting regular updates and monitor customer messages, it's a great way to maintain brand authenticity. Plus you can ensure each message is consistent in tone and information.

You can do this for free or relatively cheaply with professional-grade social media tools. Our top recommendation is Planable, which allows for clear channel oversight and makes it easy for colleagues to work together on making, planning, and approving posts. You can start for free, and plans for upgrading are $11 monthly per user or $22 for more social media pages and better features.

Alternatively, Hootsuite offers a free 30-day trial and a much more comprehensive set of tools. Pricing is $99 monthly for one user; $249 monthly for three users or $739 monthly for five users. We'll go into tool pricing comparisons more in the section ‘Are Social Media Marketing Tools a Cheaper Option?'.

How many Americans use social media?

In 2023, 74% of Northern Americans are active social media users.

What Social Media Services Will I Get for my Money?

Here's the question you really want answered: “What exactly will I get in return for $X,000?” and it's important you can give a satisfactory reply when the finance department hears your figures.

Social media marketing should be a key pillar in your digital marketing cost strategy. But you need it to deliver measurable results like improved conversions and more website traffic. So before you hire anyone, remember to ask social media managers how they will achieve your specific business goals. And you must examine evidence of their past campaigns.

Here's a list of basic social media management services you can expect to receive:

  • Optimize or create social media profiles from scratch
  • Develop a content calendar
  • Publish custom branded content (i.e. posts and tweets)
  • Responding to customer questions, reviews and complaints across social platforms
  • Connect with influencers to broaden the reach of your content

Hm, do some of those seem a bit wishy-washy? You may be wondering whether clicks, hearts, shares and follows actually translate to increased sales, turnover and ROI. It's true that having more followers doesn't automatically mean more customers, and it's not a good goal to just “add more followers” in exchange for your marketing budget. You'll want to think more carefully about your benchmarks for success.

Before you go into your first meeting with a potential social media manager, you should draw up concrete business goals based on your particular industry. Here are some examples:

  • Increased website traffic of at least x% – consultancy and services
  • More customers through the door at lunchtimes – food and beverage vendors
  • Uptick in sales – ecommerce, designers, resellers and physical stores
  • More bookings – medical and personal services
  • Better attendance at events (x% more visitors than previous event) – hobby clubs or religious groups
leaders podium of Instagram, Facebook and Twitter icons

Instagram is the number one most used social media channel for marketing purposes, followed by Facebook and then Twitter. Statistics: HubSpot 2021

Don't forget, however. that there will inevitably be more intangible benefits to polishing up your social media presence. Although harder to measure, you may want to consider the potential knock-on effect of these when it comes to improved investment opportunities, hiring and retaining talent, and responding better to market changes. To name a few:

  • Widen brand awareness
  • Improve brand reputation
  • Increase opportunities to define yourself as a company (including beliefs and values)
  • Strengthen customer loyalty
  • Better communication with customers, building rapport and understanding
  • Manage customer dissatisfaction, concerns and complaints

It requires more creative thinking to see the wider brand value in the above, to be sure. If your business needs to focus on sales and conversions, you always have the option to invest more directly into social media advertising, specifically.

If you choose to pay for social media advertising services, these should entail:

  • Lead generation
  • Driving website traffic through paid-per-click advertising
  • Precise audience segmentation and targeted advertising
  • Run social media advertising campaigns

Almost any business stands to gain from a strong social media marketing campaign. While you may think it's just retail or events-based businesses, even more “official” businesses like law firms can use social media to their advantage.

Are Social Media Marketing Tools a Cheaper Option?

If your staff are skilled at social media, have the capacity to focus on this for at least one hour a day, and are in tune with the ever-changing industry trends, using social media tools could be a good option for your business. They allow you to replace the manual effort of tasks such as being online to post at desired times and logging into various accounts one by one.

As you're using your own or your staff's time, you'll only need to pay the monthly fees for tools. This saves you the agency's retainer fee. General pricing for social media management tools is dependent on the number of users and the number of social channels you're posting across. That's why costs are as wide as $0-$3,600+ per month.

Here's a summary of some top social media marketing tools:

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Best for

Team collaboration

Best for

Social listening

Best for

Large businesses

Best for

All round social media oversight

Best for

Overall audience engagement

Best for

Overall social media campaign tool

Price Range

Free-$22 per month

(Enterprise plans available)

Price Range

$10-$40 per month (billed annually)

Price Range

$18-$3,600+ per month (paying upfront)

Price Range

Free-$126+ per month

Price Range

$25.50-$200 per month

Price Range

Pricing on request

Free Trial/Plan
Free Trial/Plan
Free Trial/Plan
Free Trial/Plan
Free Trial/Plan
Free Trial/Plan

A small business could pay $6 per month per social channel (eg, Facebook or Twitter or Instagram) for Buffer's Essentials plan. That'll take the hassle out of remembering to log in and come up with a creative new social post every morning. How? Well Buffer has a handy scheduling tool that lets you stack up a bunch of social content in advance.

If you're a bit overwhelmed by all the software, then we recommend Planable for easier cross-team social planning. Planable works out slightly better value than Buffer at $13 per month for four channels on the Basic plan. You can use the handy version history feature to craft slightly altered posts to see which one performs best.

planable logo
Planable offers premium plans for as little as $22 per month

Or, you can try for $0 per month on its free plan before you upgrade!

Social Media Marketing Cost Per Month

It's worth looking in depth at the various services you can afford depending on your monthly budget. Generally, the more you pay, the more social media channels your social media manager will cover.

To give you a clearer picture, let's explore the price plans, add-ons, and additional costs charged by one of the best social media marketing companies: Lyfe Marketing, and competitor The Content Factory.

Lyfe Marketing Pricing

If you're struggling with the time commitment of responding to social media comments and uploading new posts, Lyfe Marketing will take this off your hands. They'll create original content for your brand, and respond to up to ten user comments per day.

If you only use Facebook and Instagram and you're happy with 12 posts a month, you can pay $750 per month plus a setup fee of $150. However, you'll pay more if you have bigger requirements and ambitions.

All plans come with an account manager plus one hourly consultation per month to ensure your campaigns are on track. The monthly catch-up is a great chance to ask nagging questions about your social media strategy and get expert advice on how to manage your public reputation.

Lyfe Marketing instagram posts snapshot
The Instagram feed of Lyfe Marketing shares pro tips for social media marketing.

Lyfe Marketing Social Media Management Pricing Plans

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Starter Plan

Growth Plan

Scale Plan



$750 per month


$1350 per month


$1550 per month



  • 12 posts per month (images)
  • Facebook and Instagram
  • 10 comment responses per day
  • Sponsored posts
  • Reporting
  • 12 posts per month (vertical video)
  • Facebook, Instagram and TikTok reels
  • 10 comment responses per day
  • Sponsored posts
  • Reporting
  • 20 posts per month (vertical video)
  • Facebook, Instagram and TikTok reels
  • 10 comment responses per day
  • Sponsored posts
  • Reporting
  • Variable posts per month (video and images)
  • Facebook, Instagram and TikTok reels
  • 10 comment responses per day
  • Sponsored posts
  • Reporting

Lyfe Marketing charges a one-off setup fee of $150 for social media management services.

The Content Factory Pricing

If you're not social media obsessed, finding the energy to post across multiple channels slips down the priority list. The Content Factory is a specialist marketing agency, skilled in creating successful social media campaigns. These consist of tailored strategies to engage your target audiences, and driving referrals and conversions for your business.

The team will manage three social media channels for the monthly management fee ($7,500 per month), with the option to add on an extra platform (such as TikTok) for an extra fee ($2,000 per month).

Video reels, story replies, and network-building all come as standard. Although it's more costly than generic social media packages, you'll get custom graphics and goal-oriented strategy. That's a better standard of service than we've seen from cheaper (and lower-rated) social media management agencies.

The Content Factory Social Media Management Pricing

Management of three social media channels: $7,500 per month.

Additional social media channel management: $2,000 per month.

In-person social media training (three days on site): $10,000 plus travel.

Online consulting (min. three hours): $250 per hour.

Online social media training with live instructor: $3,500.

How Much Do Businesses Spend on Social Media Marketing?

According to research by the Content Factory, the average company in the US spends between $200 and $350 per day on social media marketing. This means total costs can end up somewhere between $6,000 and $10,500 per month, equating to anywhere between $72,000 and $126,000 annually. 

The reason these figures are much higher than those we've cited is because they include all potential overheads, such as hiring in-house social media staff and training them up. These are things you don't need to worry about when you work with a social media management company or freelancer – so you can see how you might save money by working with a third party instead of managing your social campaigns in-house.

There's no denying that social media marketing can be expensive, but the results of an effective campaign will pay dividends; helping your business find new customers and boost sales. So, in the end, the rewards you’ll gain make it a worthwhile investment.

How Much is Social Media Marketing Worth?

The majority of businesses and marketers agree that social media marketing is a worthwhile investment. According to 2022 stats, 73% of marketers report that their social media marketing efforts have been effective, and 90% say it has increased their business's exposure.

We also know the popularity of social media marketing is trending upwards. It was predicted that $173 million would be spent on social media advertising in 2022. In fact, social media advertising is currently the second-biggest market in digital ads.

But how does that translate into meaningful figures for your business? One way to calculate the ROI (return on investment) of your own social media marketing campaign is to measure your quantifiable goals, such as the number of online form submissions or product purchases you gain, compared to the amount of money you spend on your social media marketing.

For example, let’s say you pay $0.97 – the average cost for Facebook PPC (pay-per-click) ads – for each time a customer clicks on your advert link. Now let's say you get 1,000 clicks. You’ve spent $970 in total. You’ll then need to divide that total spend figure by your average cost of acquiring a new customer in order to get your ROI percentage for Facebook PPC advertising.

Expert Verdict

The services of a highly-rated social media marketing firm such as Lyfe Marketing start at $750 per month. This buys you 12 posts per month across your business Facebook and Instagram accounts. You can services for cheaper than this, but you'd be wise to remember you get what you pay for.

It can be expensive to hire a social media marketing agency, so it pays to check out whether you can do the work in-house. Our top social media management tools are:

  1. Planable – Best for team collaboration
  2. Zoho Social – Best for social listening
  3. Hubspot – Best for large businesses

Remember, investing in an effective social media marketing campaign can bring your business more customers and sales, and attract online traffic to your website – making social media marketing strategy a worthwhile investment.

planable logo
Planable gives you control of your social media marketing for $0-$22/month

And you can try it for free before upgrading to an affordable premium plan


What's included in the cost of social media marketing services?
Social media marketing includes updating or creating social media channels for your business, publishing custom content to your target audiences and responding to comments on your profiles. Social media marketing services largely amount to reputation management, customer care, brand voice curation and advertising specific products, services or promotions.

Additional services include publishing posts across a wider range of channels, as well as targeted pay-per-click advertising and sales lead generation. These may cost extra, depending on the terms of your particular provider.

How much does it cost to hire a social media marketer?
Your minimum costs for hiring social media marketer are $750 per month if you pick a low-end agency. High-end agencies cost $2,000-$10,000 per month.

If you're on a tight budget, you can hire freelancers for around $50-$80 per hour. If you need just a few social posts per week, that can amount to around $700 per month. However, you'll need to keep an eye on your social channels for any negative comments or breaking industry news in the time periods your freelancer isn't on the clock.

How much does it cost to outsource social media marketing on a small budget?
You can expect to pay $35 to $55 per hour for a social media management freelancer on an outsourcing platform such as If you're really trying to get the lowest rates possible, you can outsource to English-speaking countries like India, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Singapore.

Of course, the main way to cope with a small budget is to tackle your own social media until you can afford to hire professionals.

Written by:
Sabrina Dougall
Sabrina Dougall Web Marketing Expert

Sabrina is a business journalist whose career began in news reporting. She has a master’s in Investigative Journalism from City University London, and her work has appeared in The Times, The Daily Express, Money Saving Expert, Camden New Journal, Global Trade Review, and Computer Business Review. She specializes in writing about SEO (search engine optimization). Having run her own small business, Sabrina knows first-hand how critical digital marketing is to building a client base and local reputation.

Reviewed by:
Robyn Summers-Emler, Grow Online Editor, Profile Picture
Robyn Summers-Emler Digital Growth Editor

Robyn started working on Expert Market in 2021 as a specialist in business websites and digital marketing. As the Grow Online Editor, she ideates, commissions and optimizes content on Expert Market that helps businesses thrive in online spaces and maximize their ecommerce potential. Covering everything from choosing a website builder to scaling a social media marketing strategy – Robyn uses her expertise to help startups, SMBs, and larger businesses realize digital growth in an increasingly competitive landscape.