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When Should You Hire a Social Media Manager?

Emily A. Hay is the Founder of Hay There Social Media, a unique training company that takes the time & guesswork out of your social marketing efforts. We help businesses in 2 ways: 1.Seeking an outsourced social media manager? Contract from our expertly trained community of social media freelancers. 2.Need proven support for your existing internal social media point person? Through our business membership, get 24/7 access to social media strategy, ideas & live direction to skip the learning curve & prevent lost opportunity. Contact Hay There today!

You’re a busy entrepreneur. You are familiar with wearing all the hats. It doesn’t intimidate you to be the CEO, the CFO and the social media manager of your business. But just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. A critical element of good leadership is knowing the difference, and taking action. 

The internal battle is real. Doing everything yourself may be the easiest and most cost-effective short-term solution, but deep down, you know it may not be sustainable or in your long-term best interest. You daydream about the alternative — delegating. 

A 2014 survey conducted by Gallup found that the Inc. 500 CEOs who know how to delegate properly generated 33% more revenue than their counterparts over the course of 2013. But what if you aren’t Inc. 500 material — yet

Perhaps you’re in the process of launching your project, and you are finding that there are irreplaceable learning experiences and brand-building opportunities gained by being the fingers behind the keyboard. It can be scary to think about relinquishing ownership of managing the DMs, creating the Reels, posting the copy. 

Now that those experiences are under your belt and you know all the right questions to ask, it might be time to consider reallocating your time to an elevated view of the operation. 

If that’s the case, how do you know when it’s time to hire a social media manager? Ask yourself the following questions and reflect honestly. If you can answer both “yes” and “no”, or just “no” to any of these, you’ll know what your next hire needs to be.

1. Are You Able to Create a Content Calendar?

I find many business owners will say “yes” to this question. But when they peel back the layers to qualify their answer, they see it’s not exactly a full month of content and it’s not close to consistently being month after month.

For those who are able to get the content calendar done, do you feel jazzed about it? Or just “meh?” Or do you not know how to feel about it? If your approach to a content strategy (and calendar) is to “throw spaghetti at the wall,” it may work for a while, but not long term. 

Not having a consistent strategy can quickly leave subscription entrepreneurs wondering if they are doing social media “right” or question what it’s even doing for them at all.

2. Are You Staying Updated on the Latest and Greatest?

We know, we know — this is a TALL order for anyone not doing social media full time. 

It all evolves so quickly, and by the time you can wrap your head around a new feature, you’ve heard there’s an update or new algorithm that somehow affects your social presence.

Being on the ball with the latest and greatest isn’t just about keeping up with social media trends (even though that’s HUGELY important). It’s about having a flexible strategy that may leverage different tactics at different times. 

Have you considered paid promotion on social as well as tactics like influencers or organic video content? Have you taken the time to carefully plan the best formats to get your content seen and engaged with?

If you feel like you have plateaued with your time and abilities to keep content simply written and posted around your important sales/seasons, then it’s time to hire a social media manager.

3. Are You Questioning the Impact of Social Media on Your Business?

If you don’t really know what social media is doing for you, you are likely overdue for hiring a social media manager.

A primary value-add of a social media manager is that they will know what, how and when to measure the performance of your social media content. A social media manager should be able to set realistic timeframes for your goals and provide you with feedback and ideas if you are not hitting them.

Be prepared: When you hire a social media manager, you may uncover some overall marketing messaging that could be tightened up or tweaked, but this is never a bad thing if it gets your customers closer to knowing you, liking you, and hitting the “subscribe” button.

So, What’s Next?

If you think you might like to hire a social media manager, the most common question I hear is, “What is this going to cost me?” The good news is, with an outsourced social media manager, you get flexible expertise that can grow with your marketing and budgetary needs.

Approach the relationship as an equal. We often tell our clients, “Help me help you,” as working with an effective social media manager is a collaborative effort that requires you to view it as a partnership — but a partnership that frees up your time. As a subscription entrepreneur, you know that more time and mental bandwidth can be the most valuable investment in your business.

Make sure you’re working with a pro. Social media efforts often fail because it is relegated to the wrong person. Perhaps someone who didn’t perform in a different position, or is a friend. Find a social media manager who shows a genuine interest in your company, your customers, and your success. This person will be representing your brand. Make sure they have been trained not only on the platforms, but on how to maintain a high level of professionalism, as well as consistently review and meet mutually agreed-upon goals.

Explore all of your options. Even if you are doing your own social media marketing because your background is in marketing, it never hurts to look at best practices outside your four walls and return with information you can apply to your unique model.

We’d Love to Help You When You Are Ready!

Full disclosure: I started and have run a social media marketing agency since 2010. For 10 years, we helped small to medium-sized businesses create a digital footprint and build meaningful connections with their target audiences. In 2019, we began training women to do what we do as freelance social media managers. While my experience is around outsourcing your social media, I’ve been around the block to know that if keeping the work on your plate is best for you, then let’s keep it that way. But if your season of business changes, hiring a social media manager can be one of the most effective ways to create measurable value.

Looking for more opportunities to market your business? Get professional advice on how to better your brand by attending SubSummit, the world’s largest subscription conference.