Strategising and executing a social media campaign that is in line with your brand is not as easy as it would seem.
Many people think it’s just a matter of posting a few articles on Facebook or putting a few tweets out there.
Updated 4 February 2022
Well, if you think that’s going to work, think again, cause it won’t. Executing a successful social media campaign that delivers a return on your time and investment requires planning, creativity and preferably a team that knows what it’s doing. If it’s handled properly the rewards are huge.
If it’s implemented in an ad hoc, random manner, then the results will be poor. All that will happen is a lot of wasted time, effort and unfortunately potential business.
The downside of trying to find a decent social media marketing agency is that there are just so many of them; especially in Sydney. So many web and SEO agencies feel that just because they happen to play around on Facebook with their mates, they know what they are doing. WRONG! Using social media for personal use is entirely different for B2B or B2C. This is why so many social media campaigns turn sour. Businesses choose the wrong company to begin with and they end up stuffing things up completely.
My advice once you have found a few social media companies is to first visit their office so you get a better idea of their setup and how they operate. After all, this is your business and you really want to get a feel for the people to who you are entrusting your social media too. There are so many different agencies out there online that you need to find the right fit. A face to face is the very best solution. If you are a small business looking for a small social media presence then you probably won’t want to hook up with a big agency. Finding the right fit and personality is vital. At Hopping Mad Designs we have used a freelancer in the past called Social Salad Co and the results were remarkable. The owner of this agency was extremely hands-on and was able to give us advice on both Instagram and Facebook marketing.
When you are meeting with them, you should be posing questions like who have they worked with in the past, what are the results you have been able to achieve and what are your processes in terms of delivering content, what reporting systems do you use and most importantly who will be doing the actual work? If you like what you hear then go for it. If any of their answers raise warning flags, it would be a good idea to bail at this stage. Essentially, they need to sound legitimate and know what they are talking about.
A reputable social media agency must be able to give you on the spot answers to your questions. A great one to give them is ‘what platforms would suit our business and demographic’. They should be able to answer this ASAP. They should be able to pick the right platform immediately. For example, if your brand demographic is under 18, then Instagram is the ideal platform. If your business is B2B then LinkedIn is ideal. Picking platforms are super easy and they should be able to do this at your initial meeting.
Social media is all about tweaking interest in your brand or business and for this to happen content needs to be published regularly. This can come in various forms, blogs, competitions, news items, specials, gift offers, basically anything to get people to sit up and take notice. A lot of businesses nowadays will try to find social media influencers with a huge following to promote your brand. People can pay a lot of money for this but in many cases, the dividends are huge especially if the influencer has a wide reach and can speak to your audience. The Sydney Morning Herald tells us that Influencers and social media stars have fast become some of the most sought-after names in fitness, lifestyle, fashion, travel and creative industries, and the biggest platform for influencer marketing is undoubtedly Instagram, with brands lining up to be associated with popular social media personas.
Obviously, influencers are OK if you have deep pockets but many SME’s need the help of a social media agency that can offer more budget-friendly solutions.
You need to ask your potential agency how they intend to deliver this content and the frequency of this. You also need to ask them if they have an in house graphic design team that can manage the artwork associated with the campaign. If they have good answers to these questions and they seem to be very organised in their reporting system and scheduling of social media posts then this is a good sign.
If they seem flakey, inattentive, non-committal about when they will implement content, unable to give you case studies, or worse simply hand you over to some account manager with little experience ( that keeps saying they will get back to you with an answer to that question) then this is a sign of things to come.
Be a dominant player on social media
Most businesses really don’t know what they are looking for when it comes to social media and this may affect their decision-making process. Nearly everyone I speak to tells me that they want more followers on Instagram and more likes on Facebook. This is not really how social media works. What we need to do is define the type of results you are looking for; whether they are more traffic to your website, more consumer engagement or higher conversion rates? All of these variables need to be considered before starting any type of social media campaign and these are the types of questions that they should be asking you.
If all they promise is 1000’s of extra ‘likes’ then this is again a bad sign. You can have all the ‘likes’ in the world but does it translate into extra sales or revenue?
In summation, here is a snapshot of traits you should be looking for with your social media agency:
- Be able to come up with platforms in the initial meeting with some great ideas
- Clear articulate strategy. No fluffing around or getting back to you later with answers. An experienced team and not someone operating from home or a serviced office. Reliability is key here. Freelancers are dangerous as they can decide to drop your account or go missing in action leaving you exposed – unless they can show you past work and prove their ability. They may be worth a try but never sign lengthy contracts.
- Precise scheduling of content, even over holiday periods like Xmas. This is critical as you need to seem to be active during these times.
- Know your market and what they are looking for and what they want
- Great reporting system with structured reporting on a monthly basis
- Longevity in the industry with a really good record of previous successes
- An accountable team that treats your business with respect and not just as a number.