How to hire a best-fit social media manager

Looking to outsource social media for your business? To hire a best-fit social media manager, start your search close to home. In short, ask your peers.

Fact is, people like to use a product or service that’s been endorsed by someone they trust. It’s a great way to ensure you’re hiring someone who’ll be a great fit for your business. (It works both ways too; over 80% of my  business is via client recommendations. Generally it’s a winner; nice people = great clients – and they tend to hang out together in the same circles!)

Owners of small to medium businesses understand how outsourcing works, and that freelance contractors regularly maintain more than one client. As such, (unless they’re your closest competitors!) many business owners will actually recommend the best of the best to you, knowing you will return the favour in some way when the time comes.

So…just ask!

If the ‘endorsement’ route for hiring a best-fit social media manager is proving a dead-end, you can also put the word out—and specifically ask for recommendations:

At local business organisation meetings.

Within niche-specific forums or membership sites you belong to.

Within closed Facebook business groups you belong to.

From your business coach or mentor.

Failing this, spend some time researching possible candidates on Google. (Hint: Look for websites rather than people).

A social media management website can allow you to check out criteria without the need for initial contact first. You can check out rate cards, look at portfolios to see if that person or company is a good fit, and read—and check out—testimonials.

When you are finally ready to contact that person or company, you will have a clear picture of what to expect and how much to budget monthly.

Social media management companies abound online—and fit almost every budget and company size. If you are going to go with a company that specialises strictly in social media, you will want to match the size of your budget, company and goals to the scope offered by the social media management company. (For example, if you’ve only just been in business a couple of years and you typically make about four thousand pounds a month, you can pretty much bet that a company who charges a flat fee of three thousand a month is too much fire-power for the way you operate: they are looking for larger celebrity marketers or bigger brands.)

Hire a best-fit social media manager - Infographic by Lucy Lettersmith

Hire a best-fit social media manager for your business – Infographic by Lucy Lettersmith

In order to hire a best-fit social media manager, look for a goal-oriented approach when you’re interviewing. If your candidate talks about nothing but traffic, traffic, traffic (or engagement, engagement, engagement), then keep looking: Traffic is just one part of what a social media manager’s role involves.

If he/she talks about goals, sit up and pay attention. You may have a winner!

Remember, this person is going to be your voice on social media—so make sure he/she understands what you are all about to your followers and subscribers.

How to hire a best-fit social media manager -2 top tips by Lucy Lettersmith

 

Breaking free: is it time to outsource your social media?

As a small business owner, how do you know when it’s time to outsource your social media?

Let’s take a look at some undeniable signs…

  • You’re spending hours on social media every day, leaving money-making tasks undone.
  • You don’t have time to create social media tasks.
  • You are already diligently maintaining a social media presence, but you’re just not connecting with (a) many people or (b) the right people.
  • You’re unsure which social media platforms to concentrate on, and which types of content to post.
  • You absolutely hate interacting on social media (you’re just not social!)

If sign number one is your only reason (or your strongest reason), you most likely need to hire a social media VA (virtual assistant). If you “checked the boxes” for any of the other reasons, however, it’s time to hire a social media manager.

Er, hang on a minute. There are two options?!

What’s the difference in outsourcing to a social media manager or a social media VA (virtual assistant)? What do each of them actually do?!

  • A social media manager takes care of the big picture with minimal input from you, other than the goals and end results you want to achieve (overall and for your campaigns).
  • A social media VA performs social-media related tasks delegated by you.

Since VAs vary widely in depth of experience, sometimes there can be real crossover between the two, especially after you and your social media VA have worked together for some time.

Know which type of social media assistant you require, before you look for one. It will help you hire exactly the type of help you need.

A social media manager is responsible for:

  • Suggesting and brainstorming the most effective social media strategy.
  • Developing awareness of your brand on social media.
  • Suggesting goals and objectives.
  • Creating a targeted strategy for your social media content.
  • Increasing your social media reach.
  • Ensuring your social media communications reach the most targeted audience possible.
  • Increasing leads from your social media appearances.

And, of course, let’s not forget the most obvious difference: A social media manager actually manages social media VAs—both yours and (maybe) his/hers.

(For instance, she might have three VAs in his/her company: One who specialises in social media advertising development and upload, someone who specialises in Twitter, plus another member of the team who writes content for various social media outlets.)

A social media VA is typically responsible for:

  • Checking and monitoring your social media accounts.
  • Scheduling and uploading posts created by you.
  • Responding to generic, designated post types and answering common questions on your behalf.
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER vs SOCIAL MEDIA VA by Lucy Lettersmith

Got a clearer idea of the type of outsourced help you’re looking for? Great stuff.

Look out for my next ‘social media’ categorised blog post; I’ll be telling you how to outsource help that’s the perfect fit for your business.