Getting someone to hire a social media strategist can sometimes be a hard sale. And I understand where they’re coming from: why should they hire someone to do something that most people do in their spare time? Convincing them really boils down to accurately demonstrating how managing your social media (and all online marketing) is 100% a full time job. Here’s a glimpse at everything that goes into managing successful social media accounts for your business:
Setting Up and Maintaining Social Media Profiles
It’s not uncommon for us to receive a lead from a client who absolutely and completely understands how important social media is in the current online marketplace… but they have absolutely no social media presence to speak of. When this happens we then have to perform a ton of leg work to get them ready for the world of social media marketing.
The setup can be time consuming — it involves everything from researching where their audience is, building social media profiles on the right platforms, setting up their social advertising profiles, then managing those accounts and maintaining them so that as soon as something changes with your business (be it a logo, branding, or voice) we can make those changes on the profiles themselves.
You’ve got your social media accounts setup on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Your Call-to-Action (CTA) buttons are all setup. Your profiles are filled out with your business address, contact links, phone numbers, and pictures of your store cat. Now what do you do?
This is when the blog turns into a sort of “day in the life of a social media strategist” kind of a thing. First things first: content. Do you have any? You have to source relevant, industry-related news articles to share with your clients — at least one per day per platform. At three platforms that’s 84 articles a month you need to have in your pocket (ideally scheduled out through Hootsuite) every month… at minimum.
Guess what? The industry is changing daily. What industry, you ask? All of them. As a social media strategist it’s our job to be relevant and at the forefront of the daily news beat. The first job of a social media strategist from day to day is to wake up and the morning and spend the first two hours of their morning figuring out what happened over night and how that affects your business. There are tricks to speed it up (like setting up RSS feeds to create a content farm) but doing the grunt work will always be slightly cumbersome and time consuming.
Not all of what you share on social media is going to be industry related breaking news. You’re going to want some original content to post natively to platforms that shows you’re an expert in your field. These creatives can come in many forms: photos, infographics, newsletters, e-guides, blogs, white papers, the list goes on. If you’re in the fine arts then you’re probably most definitely going to be on Instagram or Tumblr — at the least have a gallery on your website, or photo albums on Facebook. This means regularly churning out content to share on those visual channels. Of course, once they’re designed they then have to be scheduled to your platforms. Congrats, now you can go to lunch.
So, you just got back from your lunch break and you’ve got a ton of news articles related to your industry and a bank of sweet graphics to share with your loyal fans. Now you get to spend the next 3 hours buried deep in Hootsuite scheduling all of those pieces of content onto your profiles over the next week. There’s really no getting around this… keep your content calendar open, pull from your content bank, dig in and do the grunt work. But remember not to overdo it — you don’t want to annoy your followers.
Oh, did we mention that throughout the day you’re going to have your social media sites open in separate tabs and you’re going to be watching for every time someone comments, likes, tweets, or engages with you in any way? I hope you can multi-task and wear a hundred hats.
The end goal of social media is to be social so you have to do that too. This builds loyalty and sets up expectations for your followers — you need to be someone they can get a hold. Get a bad review on Yelp? Transparency and altruism become virtuous traits.
Analytics and Reporting
You’re finally at the end of your day and you’re packing up to go home and binge watch Project Runway when you hear a little ding from your browser. You’ve got an email: it’s your client asking for an update on the social efforts. Sorry, Heidi and Tim, but you’ll have to wait while this social media strategist pull insights from Twitter, Facebook, and Google Analytics, parse the data, crunch some numbers, draft up a PDF report with fancy charts, and then schedule a phone call to review it with the client.
And then do it all again tomorrow.
Managing Your Social Media Strategy
This blog isn’t meant to be a complete turn-off to the idea of doing social media, it’s just an illustration of the immense amount of work that can go into running a good social media marketing campaign. If you want more information about how this can help your business grow and generate leads feel free to contact us, we’re happy to chat.