Whether you are a small or large business, social media can be an effective and efficient part of your marketing program. Your social media manager isn't just there to read comments left on your brand Facebook page. She is there to help you make the most of your marketing campaigns, and here are some ways to tap into what she has to offer.
Make them a part of the team
Make sure your social media manager is an active part of your team so he understands your goals, messaging, target audience, and sales goals. That way he can develop a social media strategy that will work help meet your objectives not only when you have a campaign but all the time in between. Most social media managers live by their calendars, so share your planning calendar and upcoming events so your social media manager can be prepared. If you hold a weekly standing meeting, that is a perfect opportunity to involve your social media manager.
Include them in your process
By making social media part of your process rather than an afterthought, you can have a more consistent brand experience across all your channels from the web to CRM to social. This includes all steps of your process -- from planning to last steps such as approvals. Be sure social media campaigns are part of any approval process such as branding, so assets being posted are as acceptable as those you produce for your own campaigns. For instance, there may be restrictions around how the brand logo can be presented in a graphic, or legal may need to see any social media sweepstakes terms and conditions.
Plan for measurement
Be sure to set measurable goals for your campaigns on social media, and ask for the results. Reviewing the data with your social media manager will help you refine your content, messaging, and strategy for your following campaigns. For instance, when running Facebook advertising with multiple ad designs and copy, your social media manager can look at the analytics and tell you which performed the best. Armed with that knowledge, you can improve your next round of advertising.
Learn from social media
Your social media manager holds the key to a wealth of information for your brand. By looking at your brand's social media account analytics, you can learn about the customers who follow you. Your social media manager can also gather information for you by searching hashtags and monitoring online conversations. Do you really want to know what your customers want? Work with your social media manager to find out directly from the people who interact with your brand every day. Discover insights such as what your customers are looking for and what they think of your brand. You can even discover pain points and issues by the customers that reach out to your brand for support via social media. It is an invaluable opportunity to grow.
Ask for what you need
Don't be afraid to ask your social media manager for specifications. Most social media platforms are restrictive in regards to image sizes, character count, and linking. Each has its own tone and protocol also, and no one is more familiar with those details than your social media manager. Your social media manager can provide you guidelines for your content creation so your messaging is optimized for each social media platform. Social media managers should be well versed in best practices, so when she tells you that a particular hashtag is not ideal, it is in your best interest to take it into consideration.
Provide what your social media manager needs
In return, the more assets you can provide your social media manager, the more efficiently she can communicate your message. Any graphics or copy that you can deliver will result in campaigns that are in line with your expectations. A social media manager's worst scenario is one where she has to go digging for assets or come up with them herself. For instance, when posting a video to YouTube, your social media manager will need a video title, description, keywords, and category type. If you leave it up to her to create that copy, it will take longer and might not be as targeted as you want it to be.
Social media is constantly evolving and shifting, so be prepared to change plans and alter your approach. What has worked in the past or in other media might not be idea for social media. The best social media campaigns can come from thinking outside the box and trying new ideas.
It's also important to be able to move on when a mistake is made. The best social media managers admit when there is a failure and learn from it. The ability to rework and adapt is one of the benefits of social media. Social media managers should always review posts before they go live but errors happen and with the fast pace of social media it's best to recognize them, fix them and continue forward. Blunders will be forgotten soon, so focus on doing better next time.
Plan for the future
Don't create your marketing campaign in a bubble. Involve your social media manager in your campaign planning, and she can offer up new ideas for using social media to help make your campaign a success. It could be a new Facebook advertising opportunity, a blogger you could partner with, or a creative Instagram contest. Remember that your social media manager stays up to date with the latest social media features and trends. There could be a new social media platform that would be a great fit for your business. Perhaps another social media platform is not reaching your audience and your efforts would be more effective elsewhere. If your campaign plans have already been finalized, it's not too late to recover. Bring in your social media manager, analyze results, and ensure she is included in future planning.