Social media has become an increasingly important part of our lives. We regularly post on Facebook, tweeting on Twitter and uploading photos to Instagram.
We also find social media creeping into our work lives, with businesses setting up accounts to help drive brand awareness, develop customer relationships and ultimately generate sales.
Unfortunately, a common misconception by many businesses is that if someone can update their own personal Facebook account on what they got up to at the weekend, they can easily run social media marketing for a company.
Businesses therefore see an opportunity to cut costs by getting interns to manage their social accounts or expect existing employees, with already tight schedules and no relevant skills, to fit social media in when they have “spare” time. But will this give you a good Return on Investment (ROI) in the long term?
American author Erik Qualman, once said, “We don’t have a choice on whether we do social media, the question is how well we do it.”
A day in the life of a social media manager can be hectic, and to ensure you are using the channel in the most effective way businesses need to hire experts.
Something that we don’t have to do when using social media on a personal basis is decide what our goals and objectives are.
1. You need someone who can create effective content
When we update our own personal Instagram account, for example, we tend to write the first thing that comes into our heads. However, when it comes to businesses, it’s important that content fits the target audience, uses the correct tone of voice, attracts people’s attention, encourages the required response, and there is a mixture of promotional and non-promotional posts. Creating effective content, therefore, takes a lot more time, thought and effort. Understanding what works well and what doesn’t comes from experience over time and can’t just be learned overnight.
2. You need someone you can trust
As a business, your social accounts have the potential to be seen by hundreds, thousands and even millions of people. Managing social media is, therefore, a big responsibility and needs someone who will pay strict attention to detail, avoid mistakes and not post anything inappropriate or offensive. Social media is instant and public so it’s not good enough to just “give it a go”. One wrong move and you could easily damage your brand’s reputation.
3. You need someone who can dedicate time towards social media
Another misconception of social media is that it just requires a few minutes of your time now and then. However, it’s surprising how much time is needed when you want to do it right. Social media can’t just be dipped in and out of when you have the time. It needs to be updated regularly and constantly monitored to check for any customer responses. Do you have someone in place within your business who can dedicate time to social media throughout their day?
4. You need someone who can go beyond the basics
You need to go beyond just posting to get the most out of social media. This involves running adverts, offers, polls, competitions, prize draws and more. It’s therefore important you have someone in place who has experience with these activities and understands best practices.
5. You need someone who can stay up-to-date
Social media is constantly developing so you need someone who is interested in social media and willing to stay up-to-date with the latest changes. This can help your business reach its customers more effectively in the future and stay ahead of your competitors.
We hope this article has given you something to consider when managing your social media activities. There are certain things your interns can help with, or you could look at training existing employees. However, to get the best results immediately, you may want to consider employing a Social Media Manager or outsourcing work to an expert.
Written byElizabeth Harmon