You want to grow your brand on social media, but you don’t have the time to do it. How do you find the right person to be your social media manager, and what should they do?
Your social media accounts are a great way to find new potential leads and turn them into customers.
With social media, you’re able to engage with your audience in a more natural and informal way, show them who you are, and win over their trust to become clients and customers.
But to be successful, you have to be posting and interacting on a regular basis, and that becomes really time consuming. Hiring a social media manager can be a huge time-saver for your business.
But how do find the right fit?
Hiring the wrong social media marketer can end up being a huge waste of time and money. They could get you fake followers, post non-relevant things, or charge you hourly for “engagement” and not really do anything. At worst, it can destroy your brand’s reputation if they post the wrong thing.
But it shouldn’t deter you from finding a social media specialist to help alleviate your time and grow you brand. Here’s what to think through:
What You Need for Social Media Marketing
The more information you can have ready for your social media specialist, the better content they can create for your social networks.
1. Social Networks to Focus On
Think of the primary social networks you want to be on. Don’t say all of them, because you don’t have the time or resources to be on all of them and do them really well. You would need to hire a full-time social media manager for that. Pick 1-3 networks. Facebook and Twitter are usually good starters.
Have a set of images that are ready for your social media manager to pull from. These should be images of your product, services, staff, office or store, and behind-the-scenes. Name and group them so your manager knows what they are. Also be ready to provide new photos on a routine basis.
The majority of the social media content created will be evergreen – meaning it can be used at anytime. However, make your social media manager aware of special promotions you want to run. It may be a holiday sale, a special deal, certain events, or anything else that is time-bound. That way they can integrate it into their schedule.
4. Examples of Other Profiles
You social media manager will have an idea of what to post, but it’ll also help if you want your brand to have a specific voice or style. Find a couple other social media profiles that you admire. Note what you like about their posts and what you don’t prefer.
5. Primary Goals
Know what goals you have for your social media marketing, so that your social media specialist can know what to focus on and be able to report back on the progress. Be more specific than just “grow my presence.” Do you want more followers? Do you want more engagement? Do you want more visits to you website? Do you want more leads? All of these should happen to some level, but you should focus on 1-2 of these goals, which can also change month to month.
What to Look For in a Social Media Manager
It can be difficult to find the right social media manager. Everyone has their own strategy of social media marketing and varying levels of experience.
Here are some things you can look for to ensure you hire a social media marketer that can manage your accounts and work well with you.
1. Social Media Profiles
It makes sense that if they’re going to manage your accounts, they should have active accounts of their own. Yet it’s unbelievable how many social media “experts” I run into that don’t have social media profiles or profiles they haven’t posted to in months or years.
2. Portfolio & Testimonials
They should have some experience of managing other people’s social media accounts. Of course, this is a little difficult to verify, since social media doesn’t reveal who is behind the account. But in any case, it’s still a good question to ask for links to social profiles they manage.
This is slightly better proof that they manage other accounts. They should have some sort of testimonial from the businesses that they are managing.
Your social media manager should present to you some sort of strategy detailing what they’re going to do. This often involves a social media calendar, whether it’s a weekly one or monthly one. The calendar should include times they will be posting alongside what type of content they’ll be posting, with examples. Ultimately you’re responsible for your brand, so you need to own what’s being said on your behalf.
4. Goals & Reporting
It’s important that your social media manager clearly identifies goals and is able to report on their progress. That’s where you having identified your goals is important, though as a social media expert, they should be able to help you craft them.
They should send you a report on a weekly or monthly basis detailing how your social media results were. Don’t expect them to heave stellar results every month or be on a continuous growth track – social media may be unpredictable. But if a month or a specific campaign didn’t go as well as expected, they should be able to say what went wrong and what to change next time.
5. Month-to-Month Pricing
This isn’t an absolute must, but it’s really helpful. Since social media is one of those things where you really only see its results and impact after it goes out, you can’t really edit afterwards. So if a social media manager isn’t meeting your goals or matching your style, you should be able to opt-out and start with someone new as soon as possible. Avoid getting into long-term contracts.
Where to Find a Social Media Specialist
Looking for a social media expert can be hard. You could just Google “social media manager” but you’re going to get a ton of search results and ads, and it’ll be difficult and time-consuming to sort through them. Here are ways to get narrow your results a little quicker.
1. Ask Your Friends
It’s always good to work with someone whom you have mutual connections with. They’ll often be a lot nicer and more patient with you, and perhaps even give you a deal. Email your friends, or just post a status update on social media asking for suggestions of social media managers.
2. Ask a Social Media Group
What better place to ask for social media services than social media itself? Join a social media group in the field or industry that your website is in, whether it’s Facebook, LinkedIn or somewhere else. Post a question asking for the members to recommend a good marketer.
3. Find a Profile You like
Is there a certain brand that you really like on social media and want to emulate? Get the same marketer. Send them a message asking who manages their social media. Sometimes it may be an in-house person that is open to freelance work, or they may contract someone and can refer you.
4. Post on a Job Board
There are tons of job boards specifically geared towards social media marketers and other freelancers. You can post your project and have social media specialists apply, then you select from the options. Be careful though, you’ll get tons of applications from mediocre to bad. Look for applications that reference specific details of your project – it’s an indicator that they read your post and aren’t just mass applying.
Here are some places to look:
Work with Me
Of course, you can also save yourself the time of searching and work with me. I manage social media for small business and nonprofits.
You can learn more about my Social Media Packages, and sign up for a free 20-minute consultation.