When to Outsource Your Social Media Strategy

by Monika Jansen on December 20, 2010


So, now that you’ve put together a social media strategy and automated it, your enthusiasm is fading.  It’s taking up too much of your time, you are overwhelmed with work and ignoring it a lot, and/or you don’t feel like you are doing it right.  Been there, done that.  Not only did I have zero time to manage social media, I felt like my strategy was missing something.   In fact, I got so stressed out by it that I began to dread the mere mention of Twitter, Facebook, or Hootsuite.  So I did the logical thing: I hired a social media strategist/manager (I still create all of the content).    

There are 4 different people who can help you with various parts of your social media plan, depending on your specific situation.  Here’s how to decide whether you need an intern, social media strategist, social media manager, or content creator.

If you are happy with your strategy and automation process but short on time…use an intern to help with the technical, but more time-consuming, aspects of your strategy.  By technical, I mean scheduling tweets and Facebook posts on Hootsuite; loading and scheduling blog posts; finding photos for your blog posts; scanning the alerts you have set up, and screening blog comments for spam.  They can also research new ways to connect with your target market, new social media tools, etc.

If you are happy with the automation process you set up but feel like your strategy is missing something or doesn’t go far enough…you need a social media strategist.  When looking for one, ask how they have helped other small businesses succeed with Facebook, Twitter, grow their online audience, or whatever it is you feel needs improvement.  Also ask about how they work: their process, timelines, what they need from you, and what you can expect from them.

If you are happy with your strategy but not your automation process…and you have no time…you need a social media manager to take over the execution and daily feeding of your strategy.  In my experience, this is the hardest person to find.  Most strategists do not implement their plan, but you can ask if they know of someone who does.  Your social media manager will put a solid automation process in place, but they can do a lot more: they can recommend, research, and create tweets and Facebook posts based on industry news, company news, and your calls to action; engage with your online audience; gather questions on LinkedIn for you to answer; respond to casual mentions or comments on your blog; search online for prospective clients, etc.

If you are happy with your strategy and automation process, but have no time to create the content you want to share…you need a marketing copywriter/editor.  Creating useful, interesting, and educational content to share does take time!  A marketing writer can research and write blog posts, white papers, articles, press releases, eBooks, service and product descriptions, case studies, data sheets, and more.

This entry is part of 3 in the series 3 Steps to Social Success

Series NavigationHow to Execute Your Social Media Strategy in 4 Easy Steps

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    • http://twitter.com/AjevaCom Ajeva

      Wow…. this is super comprehensive – neat, concise and short. This is really helpful especially for startups who don't have a single clue on who they need for their social media marketing and strategy. The only problem now is how to weed out the real deal from those who ssimply 'talk the talk' – if you know what I mean. Happy holidays!