Few would argue against the importance of Social Media Management in today’s business world. Yet, it stands alone in most cases in how it is approached.
Businesses will frequently have separate entities handling Social Media, SEO, Content Marketing, and paid marketing campaigns. The actuality is that Social Media Management cuts across the entire gamut of Brand Strategy efforts.
We ignore this at the peril of our marketing efforts.
The Role of Social Media Management
The Social Media Management packages that most businesses choose from are described in terms of how many posts per week, and how many platforms are being used. This is really backwards. The approach needs to address the goals inherent in marketing on Social Media platforms. This is not just true regarding paid campaigns on these sites either.
Seasonal branded images and branded quote images are simply not enough to address all that needs to be done to reach the goals of your Brand Strategy. We have previously discussed all that goes into your this. If you missed it, go back and watch our introductory webinar. Here are some thoughts as to how the tentacles of Social Media cut across these aspects.
- SEO – Your websites Search Engine Optimization efforts will be either helped or hampered by how your various social profiles are set up. How many social profiles should you set up? The simple answer is as many as possible. Start with the ones Google finds important. You can find a good list and a search tool to see if your business name is available here: NameChk.com
- Content Marketing – When you post new content to your website, the first thing that should happen after is to push notification of that out to the major social media properties. This will get you direct targeted traffic from those sites (if your account has been promoted properly). This is also the best thing for your SEO efforts with your content.
- Website Design – What you are looking for here is seamlessness. Businesses need the look and feel of their website to carry over to their social media properties. Properly sizing logos and prominent website imagery for individual platforms is vital. Continuity in profile and cover photos is a must.
- Social Media Automation – The advent of services such as HootSuite have made the work of Social Media Managers far easier, but create challenges as well. Google takes SEO juice away from posts published from such services. They like to see unique descriptions on each post as well. This means that much of what has been automated can hurt you as much as it can help. Knowing the ins and out of this is vital to the efficacy of Social Media Management.
The Ideal Social Media Management Team
With the lines so blurred between all of the various aspects of Brand Strategy, how do you find a Social Media Management Team with the skillsets to handle the job?
Your best bet is to find a full service Marketing Agency, or Marketing Consultancy to oversee, if not fulfill your needs across the board. We have discussed how this is necessary with your Webmaster needs, and here it is even more so. Utilizing Social Media to meet SEO, Content Marketing, and establishing a narrative and visual “Voice” is a must. This means all teams must work hand in hand.
Be sure to ask questions of those you interview about use of automation. Ask how much is handled in house and how much is outsourced. Outsourcing some aspects isn’t necessarily a negative. Consultants will frequently have most things outsourced. At BOMC we actually outsource just a few items. The reason has less to do with the ability to fulfill it ourselves than the availability of “best of the best” in one or two arenas. You should also inquire into the experience of key people in the organization.
Another key question to ask is what platforms the agency manages. As a minimum they should be managing the following:
- Facebook – This one is fairly obvious. It is more than just expected, it is today’s Yellow Pages.
- Google Plus – Many businesses hate this one. It doesn’t matter that few are using this platform. It’s owned by Google. ‘Nuff said…
- Twitter – Frequently misunderstood, and difficult to master. Twitter is still very popular, and can be utilized extremely effectively, even when done passively.
- YouTube – Often touted as the internet’s second largest search engine, it is a great tool on several levels. Again, owned by Google, so…
- Instagram – Another behemoth, and on the rise. One of the most profitable paid marketing platforms today. Don’t skip this one!
- LinkedIn – A must for B2B for promotion, and a must for all businesses from a professional standpoint. Not on LinkedIn? You just lost some respect points.
- Pinterest – Not just for woman, and love it or hate it, this is the largest website traffic provided other than Google that there is. Pinterest can make the difference between competitors.
Obviously we could go on and on. If a Social Media Management company can’t handle all seven of these, they aren’t really in the business. This list will expand and contract over time. There was a time not that long ago that you would still see MySpace on there. At BOMC we feel strongly about a couple more like Slideshare (think YouTube for Powerpoints and PDFs) and a few others.
You will also frequently come across specialists in one social platform or another. If you are that impressed with someone, have them work with a broad based agency for continuity and follow through with other platforms.
Developing a complete Social Media Management plan is vital to implementing an effective and successful Brand Strategy.
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