Yep, you heard me: Outsourcing social media doesn't work!
Here's the deal, of course I don't mean all outsourcing of your social media doesn't work. However, if you are planning on hiring someone to take care of your accounts so you don't have to deal with it, you are setting yourself up for disappointment and a hefty investment.
If you are a small business owner, it is essential that you are involved in your social media. This doesn't mean that you need to have complete control over it, but you do need to be present–in the planning and in the execution.
Before you plan on outsourcing any of your social media, make sure you have a strong understanding of your involvement. In fact, if you find a company that says you can be completely hands off in your social media marketing, RUN as fast as you can!
How to Set Yourself up For Successful Social Media Outsourcing
1. Put it in your calender. From the moment you decide to outsource, make sure that social media marketing continues to be part of your routine. Whether you want to check your accounts in the morning or the afternoon, chunk out 30 to 60 minutes everyday to respond to questions, or join in on the discussions.
2. Be part of the planning. Although your outsourcing company may be more experienced in social media than you are, they are not you. The person that knows your business better than anyone is you. Make sure you are part of the planning, including understanding the goals you want to experience from marketing with social media.
3. Understand the big picture. The goals of social media marketing include relationship building, brand awareness, and exposure–it is not a quick sell. In fact, social media can be viewed as the foundation to relationship marketing. As a business owner, you need to be involved in the foundation, as well as each additional layer.
4. Find a way that your true voice is shared. For my clients I recommend that they do their own blogging or at least the majority of it. This enables their voice to be shared throughout their social media platforms. The most successful outsourcing occurs when it is your voice that is shared. If you are not into blogging (which you should be, but that is for another post), then come up with a plan where you write a few tips to share with your audience on a regular basis.
5. Don't be afraid to chime in. Companies that are involved in managing social media want to hear what you have to say. Don't be afraid to tell them what you want to change, tweak or improve with the plans that you develop. The more you can view this part of your marketing as a team effort, the better your success.
Outsourcing your social media management is a great way to make sure your profiles are consistently updated and engaged. However, don't forget that building a successful social media presence is a team effort and despite the 'experts' you have on the team, you are still the leader!
Your audience is waiting to hear from their leader–don't let them down!
What is your experience with outsourcing social media? Comment below–don't be afraid to share the good, the bad, and the ugly 🙂