Outsourced social media management is what we specialize in here at B Squared Media, though we prefer to call it done-for-you social media management.
With our 5th birthday looming next year, we’ve taken stock of things and ranked what’s most important and least important with our outsourced social media management clients.
The most important thing we think done-for-you SMM clients must have is the thing that’s probably not even on your radar.
What Is Outsourced Social Media Management?
Outsourcing means handing over the social media demands of your company to a third party.
The top three reasons companies choose to outsource their social media marketing — in our experience — are:
- Lack of time – The company doesn’t have to invest time in recruiting someone, training someone, or taking the time to learn social media on their own
- Lack of resources/knowledge – Oftentimes, companies don’t have the experience or technical know-how for every social media platform they want to use; employees usually aren’t willing to work before/after hours and on weekends to sustain an active social media presence
- Cost – Outsourcing social media (with us, anyway!) costs less than one full-time employee, and you get an entire team of people with access to expensive software that’s already been tested and vetted
The reason we like to call it “done-for-you” social media management is because it means just that: we do it all for you, or on behalf of the brand.
It means that whether you have a social presence or are starting from scratch, we:
- Start with a research
- Build a solid foundation with a social media strategy
- Create and curate compelling content to share
- Offer ideas and examples for lead generation and/or conversions
- Grow and manage your online communities
- Report on it all with easy-to-understand reporting
A critical note here, we can’t do everything on our own. We look at this “done-for-you” relationship as a partnership.
In fact, we have a term we use … when the B² Crew aligns with a client’s team for outsourced social media management, we call it a hybrid team.
Sure, we’ve had potential clients come in and say that they want to dump it all in our laps and just can’t offer a liaison or partner.
But they didn’t stay potential clients for long. Because that’s just not how we do done-for-you.
It goes without saying that there are many important elements that help us prove success with our outsourced social media management clients.
In no particular order we’ve rated the following items and highly valuable to social media success:
- Knowing why you’re on Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn
- Tying social media goals to business outcomes
- Picking effective key performance indicators
- Audience Development
- Client Education
- Content that converts
- Well-planned automation
- Social media tools
- Pattern and trend discovery
As important as those ten truths are, they don’t hold a candle to what we’ve found is the most important element for success when companies outsource their social media management.
What’s MOST Important?
In a word: our relationship.
For us, that means weekly 30-minute or 1-hour meetings with the client. There is no “hybrid team” without a dedicated partner and liaison from our client.
And while a meeting may sound minuscule, there’s more to it when you take a closer look.
Here’s what our workflow looks like for every weekly client meeting:
- Pop into the accounts, take a look at what’s going on with the community (here’s a look at a two-week overview in our social monitoring tool, Sprout Social)
- Review any outstanding items that we’re waiting on from the client
- Check all tasks to make sure everything is up to date
- Analyze the upcoming week and calendar
- Create an agenda for the call (because if you don’t, it could turn into a sucky meeting)
- Create tasks in Basecamp for everything we need to do — changes to the account, posts, ads, etc.
- Create tasks to follow up with the client and remind them of any outstanding needs
- Follow up every day or two to make sure we stay on track
With many clients, that also includes a flurry of emails and touchpoints to ensure the left hand knows what the right hand is doing.
That one call has an hour or hours behind it; the weekly touchpoints help us build a better, stronger, more productive relationship with the client and therefore perform better as their brand online.
I seriously doubt any marketer can take your brand and run with it without healthy correspondence from someone on your team.
And if you’re the client who is missing calls, meetings, and generally terrible at follow-up, you may want to change your tune if you’re truly seeking success!
We think the client/vendor relationship is the most important element for outsourced social media. Do you agree or disagree? Let us know in the comments section below!
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Brooke B. Sellas is the in-the-trenches Founder & CEO of @HelloBSquared, an award-winning social media management & advertising agency. She's also the Co-host of The Marketing Companion podcast with Mark Schaefer, where they discuss jaw-dropping marketing trends. Brooke's marketing mantra is “Think Conversation, Not Campaign” so be sure to give her a shout!
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