I get asked all the time about who a company should hire or appoint as their social media manager – or the one on the front lines everyday managing a company blog, content schedule, and posting to social networks on behalf of the company.
Should they promote the in-house marketing coordinator? Or how about the guy/gal that is the son/daughter of “so and so” who is really “techy?” I say this tongue-in-cheek of course but honestly, finding the right person to manage your social media presence whether you are the CMO of a large corporation or a small business owner is an important task that can feel daunting.
Here are my 5 quick tips for hiring the right social media manager for your organization:
- Promote from within. If there is someone who is enthusiastic about social media – promoting someone from within your company is a great idea. They already know the culture and expectations. However, not every ‘marketing’ or ‘PR’ person is great at social media. It’s a common misconception – but it’s an entirely different skill set. Don’t hesitate to look outside your department to find the right person. Look for someone with an incredible work ethic (social media doesn’t happen 9-5), someone who is a good writer and someone who thinks outside the box.
- Don’t make assumptions. There is still the common stereotype that someone who is young is the best person. That may or may not be true, but what I found was more important was experience using social media in a business environment (not just Instagramming with their friends on the weekend) as well as an understanding of the work ethic needed to run a successful social media campaign and have a strong presence. Also, don’t assume that you already have the right person on your team – you may need to hire someone new and outside of your company.
- Communicate your brand voice. The social media manager is a key person of the team – make sure they fully understand the voice and the brand. Is it professional? Fun and sassy? Mature and conservative? These are all important things to communicate to the social media manager with examples of how that brand voice has translated with other mediums. Who is your ideal customer?
- Finding a go-getter is golden. Often the social media manager is left to their own devices so you want to find a someone who will figure out a way to get things done. The ideal social media person knows they need to get on their designers good side to get design elements that they need quickly, they know that if there is copy to be written that they may be the only person who can write it quickly and they know they need to focus on the big goal of what they want to achieve in social media (not get stuck in the weeds!) They know they are responsible for taking the initiative to stay up on the latest trends and software. And at the end of the day – they ‘own’ it – they know they are responsible for leading the social media pack at their organization and aren’t afraid to ask for the assistance they need.
- Check references and always double check their experience. Ask for specific examples of how they have helped companies grow their social media presence. And while likes and followers don’t tell the whole story – ask them about their previous roles and how they grew their presence. Make sure you double check these facts by searching online for the handles they reference. Ask them the tough questions – how are they going to manage ROI? What are their benchmarks that they would measure against? What software do they prefer to use? Also, check their own personal social media handles – how are they behaving online? When is the last time they posted? You need to find someone who is passionate about social media and nothing shows passion about social media better than looking at the last few weeks of what they posted!
At the end of the day, finding the right person to manage your social media presence is key. Also, don’t forget to post your job listing on social media sites – on your company Facebook Page but especially on Twitter and LinkedIn. Post on other great social media job boards like Mashable and HootSuite for even greater interest.
P.S. Helping companies find and hire the right social media manager is something I do with many of my clients. For more information, contact me today!