It seems like everyone’s a social media expert these days. But just because they’re on Facebook and have umpteen thousand followers or call themselves an influencer doesn’t mean they can develop and execute a social media marketing campaign. After all, likes and loves don’t pay the bills nor the payroll.
At one time, it was a novelty for a business to have a Facebook page, and many people felt that social media was a passing trend. However, social media now sways public opinion on everything from political elections to societal issues, and now no one can deny the reach and influence of social media.
Brands are now literally taking off because of social media, lifelong careers are changing because of it, and company-customer interaction is at an all-time high.
As a result of how much social media has become a part of our daily lives, it’s now practically unacceptable for a business to not be on social media. When a small business ignores this platform, they are ignoring a massive, powerful opportunity for customer relationships, pushing their brand, and earning sales.
Because many businesses now realize and understand the importance of not only being on social media but actually using it, they will often hire an individual or social media marketing agency to setup or manage their accounts.
Why hire a company to do this? Three reasons:
- A lot of small business owners don’t fully understand the capabilities of social media and its tools.
- They don’t know the best strategies for posting and more importantly responding.
- They struggle to translate their efforts into any real, measurable ROI.
Working with a social media marketing agency that has been educated in your product or service and brand can be one of the best marketing decisions one can make—if they truly are social media experts.
Business owners should proceed with caution when hiring these companies or individuals. There are many services being advertised as “social media professionals”, but social media is a tricky beast that requires a lot of understanding and experience. Not only is social media ever-changing—always switching up algorithms, layouts, and rules—but they also each have their own guidelines and policies about ads and what can be posted. Lately, the rules have become a slippery slope.
Feeling a “social” responsibility to small businesses everywhere, we created a list of 10 questions to ask before hiring an outside resource to lead your social media initiatives.
If the social media expert or team you’re considering is actually an expert, they will have great answers to the following questions:
10 Questions to Ask Before Letting an Expert Embark on Your Social Media Marketing Campaign
- Tell me about a social media marketing campaign you executed from start to finish, and why it worked.
- How do you use social media to get leads and increase sales?
- Do you know how to run social media ads?
- What tools do you use (Hootsuite, Sprout Social, Crowdfire, Buffer, etc.) and why choose the ones you use?
- Tell me how social media affects search engine optimization.
- How do you measure the ROI with social media?
- Do you work with influencers? If so, who are they, and how can they help my business?
- Are you familiar and up to date with all the guidelines, rules, and legality for all the social media platforms?
- How do you moderate and respond to comments, especially the negative ones?
- How will social media go hand-in-hand with my current marketing strategies?
Between 70% and 80% of people research a company online before going into their store or making on online purchase with them. This includes visiting their social media profiles in order to “get to know them” and see what they’re all about. There’s no question that social media is a very important, must-have element in your marketing strategy.
The trick is to find a social media consultant or team who not only claims to be an expert, but who has the background and expertise to prove it.