You’re a small business owner with a million different tasks on your plate. You know you need to outsource some of it, so you look for someone to manage your social media accounts.
Seems simple enough.
Soon, you get responses from a dozen different freelancers and virtual assistants at price points from $5 an hour to $2500 a month, and you’re more overwhelmed than ever, trying to find someone to help you out. Sound familiar?
Hiring a Social Media Manager
To help you find the best social media manager for your business, we’ve put together this must-read guide to the different types of social media managers and what you should consider when hiring one for your small busienss.
The Types of Social Media Manager
In 2020, there are four types of Social Media Managers:
1. Post Only
2. Content Only
3. Content + Post
4. Community Management
1. Post Only
2. Content Only
3. Content + Post
4. Community Management
Post-Only Social Media Manager
A post-only social media manager will take photos, posts, pins, or tweets that you create and upload them to the right account.
She will not work on community engagement, will not respond to comments, and will not offer any advice to you on how to improve your social media strategy.
A post-only account manager will cost less than other options. You may even be able to find a high-school or college student to undertake this task for a few hours per week. This is great if you’re a small business owner who simply wants to be sure your accounts have new content added on a regular basis.
Content-Only Social Media Manager
A content-only social media manager will create as much of the content for your small business social media accounts as you would like her to. This is a great option if you struggle with content creation, copywriting, or strategy, but still want to be involved in your own social accounts and community.
A content-creation social media manager will learn about your business and product line, will get to know you as the business owner, and will implement a great social media content strategy that will help grow your following.
A good content-creating social media manager will spend one or two months getting familiar with your business and your writing style. She will immerse herself in your business and will truly become a part of your marketing team.
She will not upload content to your account or work on community growth. She will not have access to your accounts or be able to make changes to your profile or pages.
A content-only social media manager who makes custom content for your business will cost several hundred dollars per month. Because she’s investing a lot of time in knowing your business and product, you can trust that this will be a great investment for your business.
A content-creation social media manager is right for you if you’re a business owner who’s ready to advance your social media strategy and make sure your accounts have great content, but who still wants to be involved in the posting process.
Content + Post Social Media Manager
A Social Media Manager who creates content for your business can also do the posting for you. At this stage, you get the benefits of custom-created content with the best content-posting strategy for each platform you’re involved in, plus knowing that the posts are uploaded on a regular basis.
Because content creation and daily posting are both time-intensive, you can expect to pay an all-in-one social media manager around a thousand dollars per month, depending on which platforms you use, the manager’s experience, and the frequency of posts.
A community manager will take complete control of your social media accounts: creating content, uploading posts, and implementing a strategy to grow your following. If your business is in or is preparing for a growth stage, or if you really dislike social media tasks, this is the right social media manager strategy for you.
In addition to creating content and uploading posts, your community manager will spend time each week replying to comments from your community, actively following and posting comments to your followers, and looking for groups to join where she can interact as your business. A good community manager will keep you updated on any news or problems in your community, and can be a great resource for new product ideas for your business.
A community manager should be viewed as a member of your small-business leadership team, and you can expect to pay her accordingly. Expect to pay several hundred to several thousand for a community manager, depending on the social media platforms your business uses and the time you’ll want her to invest into growing your community each month.
What to Consider When Looking for a Social Media Manager
To help you narrow down your search, first consider these three things:
How much control do you want over your accounts?
How much time do you want to spend on your accounts yourself?
How much money do you want to spend?
How Much Control To Keep Over Your Accounts
Passwords & Profiles
The first consideration when hiring a social media manager for your small business is whether to hire someone to create content for you to post, or someone who has access to post directly to your account.
Most social media managers work directly within your personal or business social media accounts. They’ll have access to your login and password information and can edit or update any piece of information in your file. If you use paid ads, they will have access to your ads account.
There are some ways around this in different platforms. Facebook and Insta offer editor accounts who don’t have access your profile info or Ads accounts. Pinterest allows you to add collaborators to your account or boards. Twitter allows you to add contributors.
But none of these are foolproof, and you will still have someone with access to your account who can post whatever they want. If you don’t want to give out personal information, a social media manager who only creates content might be a better fit for your small business than one who posts for you.
The next thing to consider when it comes to control of your social media accounts is whether you want someone to create content on your behalf, or to post what you’ve already created.
If you do all the content creation, you have complete control over what is posted to your account, but you are also stuck with most of the work. On the positive side, you can probably find an inexpensive virtual assistant to post for you for just a few dollars a day. On the negative, you’re still spending hours each week researching and writing content and taking photos.
If you give the task of content creation to your social media manager, you’ll be responsible for making sure she knows enough about your business, niche, and product to post accurate and educational posts on your behalf. A good social media manager will spend a month or two in the onboarding process, learning about your business and familiarizing herself with your writing and posting style.
A social media manager who immerses herself in your business is an invaluable addition to your team, and the extra time spend in the onboarding process will pay off over time. Once she’s familiar with your business, she’ll be able to create all the content for your small business accounts, and tailor it to fit each social media platform. This can free up hours of your time each week, to allow you to focus on the other aspects of running your business.
Striking a balance between having your hands on every post and being completely disengaged from your small business’s social media accounts can be tricky.
Having a social media manager who manages your entire community can be incredibly freeing. That means she will create content, post, reply to comments, and actively search out ways to grow your account following. This gives you time to focus on growing your business in other ways, while knowing that your all-important social media presence is hands-off.
On the other hand, being involved in your community on a daily basis is a great way to stay in touch with the needs and wants of your customers, helping you create or find new products to help them. A good community manager will keep you up-to-date on anything urgent you need to address and will bring ideas to you from your community.
How Much Time to Invest in Your Accounts
A virtual assistant who posts content you’ve created might save you a few hours per week. For many small-business owners, freeing up just those few hours each week is a valuable investment in running your business better.
A social media manager who manages your entire online persona could save you a few hours per day, depending on the time you normally invest (or want to invest) in finding new accounts to follow, being involved in your community, and responding to comments or questions in a timely manner. If your business is in a stage of growth and you’re comfortable being hands-off on your media, this might be the approach for you.
How Much to Spend
For many business owners, the decision to hire a virtual assistant, a social media content creator, or a social media manager comes down to cost. If you have just a few hundred dollars to spend per month, you would probably benefit the most from outsourcing posting and doing content creation and community management yourself.
If you have just one or two social accounts and you don’t mind if the posts are similar between the two, you can probably hire a social media content creator to write posts and post them for you. This should cost you from several hundred up to $1000 dollars per month.
For a business with a higher income level, spending $1000 or more per month could be a great investment. This allows you to have a social media manager or community manager who is an independent member of your team. She can manage accounts on a variety of platforms and who will focus on growth and community involvement.
Ready to find a social media manager for your small business?
Contact Local-Social Marketing today. We’ll run a free evaluation of your current marketing strategy, and get started looking for the right social media manager for your business.
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