1. Focus on your mission again. The same way your look to a professional to handle your finance and legal, you might consider a pro to set up and run your social program. You are expert at achieving your mission, so if you get a pro to worry about getting your message out, you can get back to your mission. Social is easy for anyone to do and enjoy, but if you also want specific results (more than likes and shares), you will want a social strategy and the techniques to attain your goals in the shortest time possible.
2. Less Expensive (in the long run). Because social experts have many accounts, to them a great deal of the work has already been done, tools bought, and are waiting for you. Take care to balance quality and cost. You can easily find a number of great companies to manage your social for $5000 per month. On the other end of the spectrum you can hire a minimum wage intern type for about $2000 per month. For comparison, because MadScience.marketing focuses on NFPs and nonprofits we can offer a great social program for $1000 per month. At this price you can afford to do it right the first time.
If you don’t think you can afford to do something right the first time, you certainly won’t enjoy paying to have it taken apart, then rebuilt like it should have been done in the first place. That is at least twice as expensive and hurts your reputation in the interim. It also costs you opportunities lost while you are using ineffective methods.
3. Better quality (immediately). Much like number two above, top-shelf marketers who focus on your industry can usually do everything for you according to the latest best practices: set-up, launch, posts, course correction, and reporting. Some will wrap campaigns into your posts as well as design elements for a truly professional looking social presence. Additionally, if they also have your end goals in mind with everything, they do you achieve synergy in your mission and social. Our actions are driven by a winning strategy for success.
· If your posts will be optimized for posting to will get better results.
· They will include the backlinks, keywords, hashtags, and whatever the next thing is so each post performs optimally.
· If posts and messaging are done according to an overarching strategy it is more likely to be successful.
· Video gets a higher ranking than copy so they should offer to create video clips, post them, and give them to your team to use to use anyway you like.
· Posting regularly is what helps you grow, so they will provide a social calendar with a strategy, will post five days a week. Most centers and small businesses let social slide when “more important” matters arise. A pro won’t let that happen.
4. Accomplish more. With a social pro running your social you will be working toward more than likes and shares. Make sure they ask about success and results you are looking for and make sure they build it into their strategy. They should talk with you about your other goals (like attendance, new programs, upcoming events) and focus their efforts on achieving those goals. They should have a strategy that makes sense to you and will obviously help you achieve your bigger goals.
5. Engage your community everywhere they are. We hear daily that centers are having trouble attracting new people, especially young people. Since almost everybody is online, if you are not, it is not surprising you are not seeing them.
A social strategy will allow you to reach the people you are not reaching today. Some of our centers now have an online audience that shows up during services or watches the services later via video. They are finding a new type of community to talk to, an online community.
6. Create once, use many times. Most pro social groups have built in elements they will give you to use elsewhere in your organization. For instance, if you have brochures, pamphlets, bulletins or monthly newsletter, they will have to make it digital for you to also post on your website or social channels. Digital versions provide clickable links, reach a lot more people, are better for the environment, and is still printable for your less computer savvy members. The rest of your organization now has images, video clips, design elements, etc. to use in all of your endeavors.
Everything they create for you is easily shareable amongst your teams. Not only will your social be more engaging, but anyone creating for you can leverage that work across the organization for a higher quality and more uniform look across your organization.
7. Everything linked, connected, and synced. Most social experts use applications to manage your social that allows it all to work together for greater effect, schedules at the best times to post, provides analytics and reporting. Back in the day companies bought expensive apps to automate, integrate and connect. Today there are apps for that that do a great job.
When you are ready to engage someone to manage your social programs use the above as a guideline of what hey should offer, cost and provide. If they cannot do everything above, keep looking. If they charge too much, they are probably great, but keep looking. There are many agencies out there and they charge what they believe they can, not what you can afford. Ask for references, look at sites they currently maintain. If they say they do social, how is their own company doing online? They probably will not do a better job for you than they do their own company, so check their work out.
Another thing to consider is their style. Most agencies specialize in flavors of social. Some are particularly good at high-tech marketing, or focus on one industry or the other. Extremely technical products need that technical conversancy to maintain credibility. Look for someone who specializes in your industry and they will not require a long ramp-up while they learn your language and your tribe’s preferences.