What kind of information does your social media manager need?
What social media guidelines do you need in place for your business?
Your social media presence is one of the most important marketing tools you can have. Don’t trust just anyone to handle your online marketing for you. Whether you hire an agency like us or manage it internally, make sure your expectations are clear. When you hand the reigns over to someone who doesn’t accurately represent your brand, you’re putting your business (i.e. livelihood) at risk.
Almost 90 percent of marketers say their social marketing efforts have increased exposure for their business, and 75 percent say they’ve increased traffic (sales).
Here are three things you need to consider when hiring a social media manager:
Determine who has access to social media and who can respond
Whether you have an agency or you do it yourself, make sure social media page roles are up to date. Remove previous employees and add anyone who you trust and have trained to manage your social media.
When you manage social media in-house you need to have a social media policy for all employees – especially those that have direct access to your social media platforms. Your policy can be as strict or relaxed as you want it to be. Some employees have more privileges than others. Develop a training manual so that guidelines are clear.
For example, agencies, like mine, are designed to handle everything as to take the workload off your plate. According to research most businesses maintain between 4 and 10 social profiles – who’s got that kind of time?
We do! Which means you’ll still need to determine the chain of command for when questions or issues arise. If you don’t fully trust your social media agency to do what is best (even if that means coming to you) then you’ve hired the wrong agency.
Develop responses to handle common issues
It’s best to get ahead of problems or issues if you can. Brainstorm different scenarios that may arise on social media, like questions, complaints, or bad reviews and determine responses. Include a FAQ to help speed up responses and to eliminate time wasted waiting for answered emails.
Remember, your agency is an extension of your company so share with them your preference in handling common issues. Many of our clients trust us to provide restitution for guests when necessary. Our clients share knowledge with us as if we’re employees so that we are better prepared to answer questions or handle any customer service issue. If you’re not sharing information with your agency regularly then they can’t best represent your brand. For example, just as you inform your employees that Happy Hours has changed, your social media agency needs to know too.
Protect your info
It may seem obvious, but you’ve got to protect your investment. Remember, your employees have access to social media too, so make sure your social media policy clearly defines what is appropriate or inappropriate to post. Consider also industry secrets or product development information that when leaked could be detrimental to your business.
Therefore, you should provide your agency with all appropriate menus, images, videos they need to post on social media. We provide a questionnaire to our clients to fill out with information we need to make sure we represent their brand. However, we are most successful when our clients maintain an open dialogue and continue to instruct, inform and rely on us throughout our relationship.
Unfortunately, social media is not a “set it and forget it” marketing tool. Your social media manager or agency can certainly do all of the legwork but as an owner or business manager, you control the overall message. Setting clear parameters and guidelines ahead of time will mean fewer headaches and better time management for you.