Best practices to hire a Social Media Manager
Social media has grown exponentially over the past decade, and it is still growing.
It seems that every different social media channel has different tactics for achieving success.
Unfortunately, a lot of business owners don’t know them, and don’t have time to learn them or constantly restructure their marketing efforts around them.
But social media is a powerful business tool to build your brand, engage customers, and sell. The use of content marketing through social media has the ability to turn once unknown brands into superstars.
Don’t one important thing you shouldn’t forget: content marketing is an ongoing test-and-learn cycle, so don’t expect results overnight.
Just like in the brick-and-mortar world, it takes time to build a brand and create a following. One way to create a distinct advantage for your organization is to add a social media manager to your marketing machine.
What does a social media manager do?
In most cases, the primary role of a social media manager is to actively use social networks on behalf of a business.
They know which marketing tactics can be used on social media platforms, they recognize which networks are most relevant to your audience, they understand how to connect with the audience, how to keep them warm, and how to make them buy.
In other words, while just about anyone can write a Facebook post, not everyone understands a company’s marketing needs and how to approach them through social media.
Depending on the needs of your business, a social media manager is responsible for:
- Representing your business on social networks
- Creating a strategy to reach your target customer, as well as managing campaigns and using paid social advertising
- Keeping your audience and partners engaged
- Managing a publishing calendar
- Creating, scheduling, and posting original content
- Listening to networks for brand mentions and keywords
- Responding to customers’ questions and comments and staying involved in conversations
- Actively monitoring news, trends, and best practices
- Analyzing and reporting results and determining the next step
What are the two most important social marketing metrics a company should monitor regularly?
- This includes conversation, shares, and likes. They have to be measurable and monitored regularly. If the content is not good enough and doesn’t stay fresh, you won’t see people engaging. The SMM should be good in content writing for your audience.
- There are two types of leads. Organic (non-paid) leads, and leads generated through paid advertisements. Listening and responding in a timely manner to social media leads is crucial. Your SMM has to be involved in these conversations, and respond to questions and feedback.
Once you’ve hired an SMM, stay involved. You have all the stories, news, and deals that are worth posting about because you own or manage the company. Help the SMM with those stories, as well as with the content and images. Review all posts before they go up and stay involved in sharing the company story.
To truly measure the success of a B2B social media marketing campaign, you can’t go by feelings. You must go by facts.
The cost for a part-time social media manager
A social media manager’s pricing can vary. Typical salaries range from $50 to $200 per hour.
If you hire for full time, things can get even more expensive.
Companies can charge $1,000-$2,500 per month to manage just one social media account. The minimum fee depends on the number of platforms you are managing and the number of posts. If you need more than one channel, that’s more expensive, like $2,500-$7,000 per month.
That doesn’t include setup either – that would be an additional cost.
Things you should keep in mind, no matter who you hire
- Social media takes time
As a client, do not expect to see results right away. It can take 12-18 months or even more for a major content marketing initiative to show significant results.
Don’t expect to have thousands of Facebook followers one week after hiring a social media manager. Be prepared to devote at least four to six months on your social media strategy to see results.
- Social media is an investment
Social media is effective if you pay for advertisements. Organic traffic will be not as effective and won’t bring a serious boost to your audience.
That’s not to say you should throw your entire marketing budget into social media, but when it comes to hiring a SMM, you get what you pay for.
- You need a strategy and goals
Many believe that social media is about posting random Facebook posts and sending out Tweets a few times a day. If you don’t have a strategy, it won’t bring results.
Questions you should ask of your candidate:
Experience in the same field
There are thousands of results if you search for a social media agency. But not every one of them is good for your business. The best is if your future SMM (Social Media Manager) has experience with similar companies than yours, or your niche.
Ask your potential SMM what sets them apart from the competition and how they can make your brand better.
- What Social Media platform(s) are best for your business? (and have them explain why).
Not every social network is right for every business. Each network has a different set of users.
Your potential SMM may (SHOULD) read about your company and audience before the interview. Ask them to describe the “personality” of your company brand in 3 words. And then identify which social media channels and audiences would be the best fit for those words. Remember: every social media channel has different marketing tactics.
Businesses should strategically choose platforms based on the target audience and goals.
Who writes the content?
No social media strategy can work without having quality content to post consistently. If you want your SMM to create it, one of the most important questions that must be asked is how they handle research, content creation, and content calendars.
If you provide the content, your SMM should determine what type of content is best for the targeted audiences.
- Do they have a blog and do they currently write content for social media channels?
If they are in the business, they probably have a blog and post regularly. Or if they don’t, ask where they published articles and ask for a link.
It’s important that your SMM understands how content marketing and SEO drive traffic to a company.
- How would they set up your budget for social media advertising?
Ask they how much money and how should you spend on social media, based on the company’s revenue and other marketing campaigns.
Investment in social media and content marketing is a good way to start online.
How do you measure success?
Have a clear goal before you start to invest in social media. Based on this goals there are measurements to pay attention. Open rates, click-through rates, conversion, number of visitors – they are important metrics for different campaigns.
What is your process for reporting?
Even if you hire an outside agency for social media marketing, you should be able to monitor the results and the activity. Having a standard process for monitoring and reporting is key.
You have to communicate with your SMM about results, content options, and potential strategy options weekly or at least bi-weekly. Your SMM should have a process for reporting ongoing results.
Wrapping it up
Take this seriously. Your Social Media Manager will speak on behalf of your brand by creating content and staying involved in the conversations around your brand and products. Choose someone who takes a leadership role in building your social and online reputation.
Hopefully, a few months from now, when you sit down to do their review, you’ll see nothing but success.