It wasn’t all that long ago when businesses were first dipping their toes in the waters of social spaces like Facebook and Twitter. In the beginning, many marketers learned to use social media in between other job functions. Maybe they read books or articles online, attended seminars, or asked colleagues for advice. But back then, even the notion of hiring a full-time social media manager seemed like nothing short of paying someone to play on the Internet all day—remember those days?
Now that marketing has evolved to the point that people are graduating with degrees in social media, or at least getting healthy doses of it in school, it seems like we never really lived before its invention. In fact, hiring someone with advanced skills in social media management can be a great investment for your company’s resources.
See, the business world has mostly made the paradigm shift into understanding the marketing potential – and necessity, really – of engaging with customers online in social media. It’s actually considered de facto marketing for most organizations large and small. Still, there is still a very sizeable gap in how successfully companies are using social media.
You’re probably wondering when is it time to hire a full-time social media manager—and we’ve got you covered. Here are some reasons we’ve compiled for why it makes sense to consider the jump:
- Social media management is taking time away from other essential tasks of the company. Although you understand that your company’s social media ROI will increase over time and help secure new business, spending too much time on it can be damaging. If you need to tend to other tasks, like hiring employees and closing new business deals, then maybe it’s time to start looking for help.
- You can’t engage in social media in real time. Even if you’ve figured out how to schedule posts (and are disciplined enough to do so), it’s still important to have real-time engagement. In-the-moment updates and posts about urgent, newsworthy, or trending topics aren’t possible if the only time you can commit is after the events have already happened.
- You are struggling with keeping up with digital trends. There are so many tasks to juggle in the busy day-to-day that researching new social trends and staying up-to-date with platform changes can be daunting. A social media manager should not only already be trained in the latest practices, but should also keep pace with changes as new updates are announced.
- You don’t understand social strategy. You might be an expert on Facebook for your personal page or have tens of thousands of followers on Twitter, but there’s still a need for planning and executing a social strategy that involves advanced marketing skills. If you’ve been posting without an overall social strategy tied to your company’s business goals, then you’re likely missing opportunities to boost both your number of followers and their engagement with your brand.
- When you do not enjoy social media engagement. Maybe you understand what a #hashtag is and how to leverage it, but still you get nauseated every time you log into your accounts. If you don’t enjoy being a social media manager, it’ll only become more difficult to do it well. Adding a social media manager to your team will probably bring fresh energy and excitement – not to mention skills – that will free you up to focus on what you love most about your business.
Still, it’s important to remember that companies don’t always have to hire a social media manager to their team. Outsourcing social media management to an agency can also be an effective strategy for resolving the issue. Whether you hire someone in-house or hire an agency to help you improve your social media skills, it’s crucial that the social media manager understands the principals of inbound marketing.
Lastly, since not all social media managers have the same skills in writing, determine if you want them to write the company blog(s), and, if so, make sure to obtain writing samples or test their talent.
If you have questions or want more advice specific to your company, don’t hesitate to let us know. Or if you have any words of wisdom to share from your own hiring experiences, comment below. We’d love to hear from you!