Compared to SEO and Pay Per Click, social media marketing used to be an afterthought for online marketing, but is now a critical tactic to promote a product or service. 91% of retail brands use 2 or more social media channels and internet users have an average of 5.54 social media accounts.
Managing the ever-expanding number of social media accounts with relevant content can be very time consuming. That is why you might want to look for a social media management company that can help generate brand awareness and build a strong online community and know how, what and when to post based on your target demographics and buying stages.
The challenge in finding a social media manager is that there are a lot of agencies and consultants out there and it is difficult to separate the “pros” from the “pretenders”. Here is our advice to help you find the best social media management company…
- Do your due diligence – Any social media agency worth considering to manage your social media should have a strong web presence. How can they effectively market your company if they can’t promote themselves? “Check out their website for testimonials,” says writer Kristi Hines in a blog post for Kissmetrics. Hines also advises to perform a thorough a web search to see if the social media agency or consultant is mentioned anywhere – in customer reviews, articles, blogs, forums, and more. You can also look at LinkedIn and other social media sites to procure more information on the company you wish to hire.
- Understand the role of the social media consultant or management company: If you are not sure of everything a social media expert can do, you’ll need to research blogs and articles on the various ways a social media management company can support your company. For instance, in a recent blog, Lindsay Kolowich of Hubspot, writes, “A good portion of a social media community manager’s role is creating and adapting content for each specific network. …Adapting content specifically for each social network yields more clicks and leads. …we found that tweets including both a link and an image optimized for the platform yielded 55% more leads than tweets with just a link.”
- Skill Level: A social media management company should not just be adept at identifying the social media platforms that make sense for your business but also must possess excellent written communication skills. In addition, your social media manager or social media management company must be strategic and open to new information and technologies. “Content curation, hungry for information, effective monitoring, professional on-the-spot communication skills, quick decision-making, good judgment, ability to be calm in the face of stress, ability to think globally,” writes Kolowich.
- Strong Business Acumen and Knowledge of Marketing: Social media strategic plans must include a broad knowledge of other marketing disciplines. For instance, will your agency or consultant know to align their social media plans with other forms of advertising and marketing? Suraj Virk writes in Hootsuite, “A successful social media manager should have a strong business acumen and a high level of understanding of marketing strategies in order to leverage their [personal] brand successfully through social.”
- Understanding sales and client/customer buying stages: In addition to a strong business acumen, a social media agency or consultant must understand the various stages of buying so they can adjust their message accordingly.