Nowadays, staying present on social media is a full-time job that many marketers have a hard time keeping up with.
Occasionally, businesses may rely on content managers or copywriters to step in for social media outreach, but very quickly, the workload starts to pile up and engagement efforts fall by the wayside. That’s because boosting your social media presence can’t be done by the seat of your pants. Successful campaigns and conversions come from a dedicated employee who knows what they’re doing, and with the right strategy, you can hire a social media manager to land a consistent impact.
If you’re a manager looking to hire a social media manager or a recruiter searching for top talent, here’s a useful guide to help speed up the process:
What Are Your Goals and Expectations for Social Media?
To start, it’s imperative for you to understand the client’s goals and expectations for their social media strategy.
Sourced from hootsuite.com
This means taking the time to figure out the company’s main priorities for social media. Whether it’s growing the number of followers across multiple platforms or needing someone to develop a steady stream of content on a daily basis, knowing what the ultimate goal is can help you put together a game plan for attracting potential candidates.
Not to mention, you can immediately establish a set of expectations for every applicant according to what the immediate need is. For instance, you may also want someone with skills in paid media, someone who can perform low-level graphic design, or shoot videos for Instagram Stories or a YouTube channel. Hiring someone to simply manage content may not be enough, and if you can establish expectations of the job early, the right applicants can emerge, which saves you time in the long-run.
What You Should Look for in Potential Candidates
With your goals and expectations set, you can begin searching for potential candidates that meet all of your necessary criteria.
For the right social media manager, here’s what you should look for:
If They Have a History of Successful Accounts
Just like you may put a programmer through some tests, using employment testing tools like Codility, to confirm they are proficient in specific coding languages, it’s also important to see if social media manager candidates have a history of running successful social media accounts of varying types. Having just one Instagram account with a few thousand followers isn’t enough to warrant a mastery of multiple accounts and different forms of content. Social media skills assessment libraries from Interviewmocha are a great place to start in order to determine if your candidate has the requisite skillsets to succeed.
Ideally, a strong candidate should be able to juggle multiple accounts (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube) and have moderate success (at least a few thousand followers) on each one. Also, they should have a track record of posting creative forms of content that include original pictures, reshared content, original captions, videos, and animated assets like GIFs.
An Understanding and Communication of Brands
Primarily, this means that they have a command of expressing a company’s beliefs and values to a range of demographics or niche audiences through social media channels. For instance, if a company specializes in catering to Baby Boomers, then idioms and examples should reflect a certain type of language and situations that their generation can relate to. The same goes for millennial audiences who respond to pop-culture references and slang terms of today.
In any case, a good social media manager understands how to navigate a company’s brand to translate to the right people. It’s also crucial that a social media manager can interact with followers online in a way that boosts customer satisfaction and engagement. This can be done through commenting on other posts, replying to messages through inboxes, or handing off phone call requests to support teams coming through Twitter or Instagram to ensure the customer receives a seamless customer experience. Business phone systems like Ooma are crucial to have in place for social media teams to seamlessly communicate with sales and customer support teams.
If They Have Experience with Automated Content Management Platforms
In addition, good social media managers have experience with automated social media management platforms that allow for seamless planning and execution of social media campaigns. Rather than doing everything the day of or without a set schedule, the right candidate should be familiar with (and be using for their own projects) automated platforms like Sprout Social, Buffer, Hootsuite, and Later that allow users to post content days, weeks, and months in advanced with pre-written captions and creative assets already uploaded and ready to deploy at a set date. Plus, social media management platforms offer a wealth of metrics to track engagement rates, impressions, and follows across multiple accounts, so an applicant should also know how to analyze this data and use it to improve efforts moving forward.
Finally, the right social media manager should have other qualifications for the job that may include (depending on what the company wants):
- A college degree in marketing or advertising
- Know-How of communication tools like Slack
- 2-3 years of previous job experience
- Strong references from other reputable brands or companies
- Tech-savviness with IOS, Android, Mac, and Windows equipment and software
Where to Recruit Talent
After figuring out what you’re looking for and what potential hires need to have, you can start sending out job descriptions with your expectations and goals to recruit talent.
Thankfully, there are plenty of platforms to share jobs on, so if the company you’re representing already has profiles established on major job recruitments sites like Indeed or ZipRecruiter, you can start by posting opportunities there and setting filters for the right candidates to funnel through.
However, since you’re searching for a social media manager, it may be advantageous to promote the job on social media platforms. In particular, Facebook and LinkedIn have their own job recruitment services that connect automatically to contacts who meet your established parameters. Simply post a job opportunity through the company’s Facebook or LinkedIn page, fill out the necessary information and qualifications, and wait for resumes to start pouring in.
Once you find a few candidates you like, you can contact them to set up phone interviews outside of online platforms and carry on the hiring process as usual.
How Much You Should Pay a Social Media Manager
Of course, every company will set its own parameters when it comes to compensation, so it’s hard to say what’s fair to pay a social media manager.
Some other factors that may affect total compensation also include the cost of living within the company’s city, the candidate’s level of experience, and what responsibilities and skills the job entails. That being said, Glassdoor states that the average salary for a social media marketing manager sits above $54,000 a year, so that may be a good indication of where you can set your bar for potential hires.
When in Doubt, Do a Trial-Run
Don’t feel like you have to make a definite decision if the right candidate comes along.
Instead, you can offer them a trial-run for a set period of time to see how they handle the company’s social media outreach. Typically, this may be a 1-month contract where the new hire can test their merit, then the marketing team can get together to assess the candidate’s work and see if it’s a good fit. On the other hand, if everything checks out and the new hire is fully committed to growing the brand, then go ahead and make them a full offer.
The good news is that you have the power to see what works and give me a fair shot to make an impact. Nonetheless, if you follow these guidelines, you shouldn’t have a problem finding someone worth their salt.