Can you imagine baking a cake for the first time without a recipe? It’s hard to imagine how eggs, flour, sugar and butter come together to make our fave spongey delight, never mind what to do with them, in what order and for how long!
It’s the same with social media. Well, not quite the same. There aren’t any calories (thank god), and there is no equivalent to licking the spoon.
But however much someone exclaims that you need to “get on social media!” not knowing what to post, when to post it or on what platform can be daunting. So what’s the answer? What if you need guidance or simply don’t have time? That’s where a social media consultant comes in. A good social media consultant can help you create a strategy, design content, build an engaged community, fuel lead generation and more — but how do you ensure you hire the right one? Let’s consider four key factors when hiring a social media consultant.
Experience & Credentials
The most crucial factor when looking for a social media consultant is experience. Before hiring anyone, check out their portfolio and testimonials. Do they have experience working with companies in your industry? What other projects have they worked on? The more experienced and knowledgeable the consultant is, the better equipped they will be to help you succeed.
Don’t get me wrong, if you’re actively posting; you’ve already got a big thumbs up from me. But if you have a social media consultant working for you, you should expect them to think of the ‘why’ as well as the ‘what’ and ‘when’. Your consultant should always start with a strategy, as this is key to tracking the ROI of your social media communications – after all, without a goal, how do you know you’re winning? Also, this strategy should align with your other marketing outputs. A good social media consultant will talk to you about your wider business goals, granular social goals and the budgets for achieving them.
Cost & Value
Of course, the price comes into your decision in hiring a consultant, but you should be looking for value over the price tag itself. Price should never be your only factor when deciding something as important as your business’s online presence. It also shouldn’t be your first factor either! Think of it this way: If someone charges you half as much as another person, are they really giving you twice the value? (Hint: No). Consider how much value their services offers your business — not just how cheap or expensive they are.
Personality & Communication Style
When finding the right fit for your business, personality matters! And I’m talking about your business’s personality, not theirs. Although rapport is obviously a sweetener. Ensure the consultant understands what makes your company unique and can communicate similarly to your target audience. It would help if you had someone reliable and communicative; after all, communication is key for any successful relationship between an employer and employee (or consultant). During an initial call or meeting, watch for body language cues and ask questions about what strategies they typically recommend — this will give you a good sense of their style and approach.
Ultimately, finding the right social media consultant can make all the difference in managing your online presence. In the words of Jessie J, “it’s not about the price tag”, so try not to look straight at the bottom line. Instead, focus on experience, credentials, strategic vision and communication style. If you are still on the fence about WHY to hire a social media consultant, check out these five benefits.
By considering all these elements carefully during your search process, you’ll be able to find someone who matches up perfectly with both your budget and expectations – ensuring that everyone involved benefits in some way from this arrangement! Good luck!