Social Media Marketing Services – Overcoming Challenges
*Updated January 2018*
Once a brand commits to a social media strategy, it’s not unusual for every department to start voicing opinions. The sales team. The events team. The CEO. The SEO team. Suddenly, “too many cooks in the kitchen” syndrome begins. Everyone has an opinion, but they didn’t show up for the strategy meeting.
Outsourcing Social Media Services
Don’t let your social media strategy become a blend of opinions via text, email, and voicemail from your team and/or clients. Build a solid, collaborative strategy and get everyone on the same page.
Here are a few steps to help everyone get on the same page and stay focused if you’re considering outsourcing:
Define Goals and Stick to Data that Matters
It’s easy to get caught up in the “eye candy” of social media: Images. Engagements. Likes. Clicks. Shares.
What about website visitors? How many people visited your website as a result of your social media posts? Even more important, how many people “clicked through” and interacted with the brand or “converted” by downloading an eBook or filling out a form?
Social media success begins with data-driven strategy and reporting. You can’t defend a strategy without data, so make sure that you can report on data that can drive a successful campaign:
- Create social media landing pages
- Implement a social media conversion strategy
- Track social media website traffic in Google Analytics
Embrace the Social Media Team Concept
Sales team members, customer service team members, and industry experts all have a place at the social media table. They are experts in your industry and they provide value in authenticity and “humanize” the brand messages. They can also help you identify your target audience. It’s a social media manager’s job to incorporate team feedback into a social media strategy; don’t build walls around each team.
If your company has enthusiastic team members, maybe it’s time connect them to the social media accounts and work with them. You might experience some delegation issues at first, but SproutSocial has you covered with Assigned Tasks for team members and a Sprout Social Team Report for tracking. Instead of holding up stop signs to client team members who want to help with social media, try embracing them.
Note: Hootsuite also has a team feature. Even better, EveryoneSocial offers a social media sharing platform where team members can suggest posts with an app, and the social media manager can approve and customize them.
Team Tip: Don’t allow team members to post to social media accounts under the same log-in as your team (using the same log-in for multiple team members). Allowing them to post with their own credentials under their own name gives you the power to report on their progress. If they’re doing well, you can keep them on board; if not, they’ll probably fade away voluntarily.
Avoid a PR Nightmare
Review the public social media accounts of team members who are approved for posting. Is their Twitter account filled with volatile political posts? Do they use their LinkedIn page as a microphone to put down competitors? As part of the social media team, it’s your job to make sure your brand is represented in a professional manner. Don’t hesitate to bring a controversial social media account to light; it might be difficult to speak up but it’s easier to deal with it before it becomes a reputation management issue. While it’s easy to assume that everyone agrees with a certain political ideology (yours), the Pew Research Center reports that party identification is near the 50/50 mark.
The Intake Form
What type of form does your social media manager receive before starting your campaign? Compare your intake form to other service providers and make sure your social media manager is getting all of the relevant information they need for success.
Here are links to a few other agency Social Media Intake forms:
If certain team members are nitpicking social media posts on a daily basis, have a tendency toward negative feedback, or seem frustrated over social media posts, keep a close eye on results. If critics are in management positions, giving them frequent reports that show increased website visits and brand mentions will help them come around.
If your company holds or attends frequent events, make sure social media manager receives accurate event information for promotion and interaction. Give them all of the following event information:
- Will any of your referral or channel partners be attending the event? If so, what’s the website URL and their Twitter handle?
- Who is attending the event from your team? Can they support the brand with retweets, likes, and shares? Can they send your social media manager pictures from the event?
- Set expectations. What’s the point of publicizing the event on social media? Maybe you want to drive RSVPs and sign-ups, or promote branding that helps your company gain visibility within your industry, or feature a specific part of the event. You may have more than one goal, but it’s imperative that your social media manager knows what those goals are.
- Website landing page. Does your website have a landing page dedicated to the event and the goals for sending people to that page? If not, perhaps it’s time to loop the SEO team in and ask their opinion about an event landing page and conversion options.
- Is there anyone from your team who is a featured speaker, or does your team have a booth at the event with live demos or giveaways? Connect them to your social media managers and help them work together, as a team.
Social media marketing is so much more than posting updates and images. It’s part strategy and part leadership; make sure your social media team is prepared to guide you toward social media success in the long run. While some brands are off chasing the next “viral strategy,” the majority of brands are finding success with steady, collaborative social media marketing.