Systems to have in place before hiring a social media manager

hc-styled-stock-photography-coffee-mugs-4-edit.jpg

Hiring someone to assist you with your social media can seem scary. But it can also be really liberating. Somewhere along the line, we’ve evolved and grown another limb. Unfortunately, it’s electronic and although useful, also weighs us down. Nobody wants to be tied to their phone, ball and chain style, for eternity. But social is a necessary evil that will suck us dry, if we’re not intentional, deliberate and careful! This may seem odd to hear from a social media strategist and manager (aka SMM), but I say it because I’ve been guilty of this myself (as you may imagine)! If your looking to free up time and brain space by outsourcing your social media, I have a few tips for you to ease you into the process!

So that it looks less intimidating, here is the quick list:

  • Defined Branding

  • Client Profile

  • Goals/Objectives

  • Cloud-Based Storage System

  • Project Management Software

Allow me to elaborate!

First, it’s extremely helpful to have a brand guide developed. This will include color codes, logos, patterns, fonts, etc, as well as characteristics of your brand voice. Ideally it will also explain your brand’s vision or manifesto. Sure, a social media manager can work without this, but having a brand guide will help them to better represent your brand, with minimal handholding in the process!

Know your ideal client. I know, I know. You’ve heard this time in time again. But if your clients loves classic weddings but all you’ve been sharing are casual beach elopements, there is an immediate disconnect that few social media managers can fix without a serious intervention. Once you’re able to define the type of client you’re after, your SMM is able to do the appropriate research (hashtags, keywords, behaviors, etc) to target across platforms accordingly.

Goals! Being able to clearly define where you are now, where you want to be and what products/services you may want to introduce in the coming months will be extreamly helpful to your SMM for determining your overall strategy & content plan. If your SMM isn’t responsible for creating your strategy, you should already have a plan mapped out for them to follow (but be sure to allow for flexibility as they may have ideas that will help you achieve your goals or plan more quickly).

Have a cloud-based storage system for your images & important documents. In an ideal world, you would have a Dropbox or Google Drive folder dedicated to each of your events with vendor lists, images, client questionnaires, etc. that can be easily shared with your SMM.

Have a project management system in place. As a wedding pro, Aisle Planner or Honeybook work beautifully. I’m also a big fan of Asana. One of my clients has provided me access to her Aisle Planner so that I can always see which events she has on the horizon and which events she has completed. I can easily access the vendor lists & questionnaires as well. This allows me to plan for her blog posts and social media, as well as potential submissions. She doesn’t even have to send me images because I contact the photographer as soon as the event is over to remind them to provide me gallery access.

Now, here is a bonus not shown in the list above. TRUST. This may go without saying, but just as you want your clients to trust your expertise, you must trust your SMM to represent your brand. Hire someone who you feel comfortable with and confident in. Someone that you can connect with and would feel good about adding to your team (because this person is an extension of your business).

Hand in hand with trust is flexibility. Things can often change quickly in the social media world and your SMM will want to adapt quickly. Sometimes that requires a little testing. And sometimes that means taking action without always communicating the nuances immediately. It might mean an increased number of posts one week, while pulling back on another week. It might mean changing up your formatting or testing a new group of hashtags. It could be posting something “out of the normal” to see if they can elicit a response. Just as you would troubleshoot if rain is forecasted on the wedding day or the cake is a melted mess, an effective SMM will do the same!