Social media marketing is crucial for B2C and B2B companies today. It doesn’t matter what industry they are in, because they can find their unique audiences out there on at least one of the many platforms available.
According to WordStream, 22 percent of the total global population uses Facebook, there are more than 530 million users on LinkedIn and Snapchat reaches 41 percent of 18-34-year-olds in the United States alone. Social media presents a huge opportunity to businesses that want to find and connect with their audiences, promote their content and establish authority in their niches.
Another advantage of social media, especially for small businesses, is that all the platforms, like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Snapchat, are free to join. If you want to better target your audiences and promote your content, you can typically pay what you want for advertising and sponsored content.
When it comes to running social media marketing campaigns, you can either learn it yourself or hire a social media marketer for your business. The latter is typically better, because social media is much more complicated than it looks, and takes the dedication of at least one full-time staff member, depending on your company size. A great option is to find a social media marketing company that can help you.
Why Hire a Social Media Marketing Company?
A social media marketing company provides social media services to your business. You can hire them on retainer and pay a certain fee every month, or contract out certain tasks to them. Here are a few of the advantages of hiring a social media marketing company:
- These companies are full of experts who dedicate 100 percent of their time to social media, day in and day out.
- They offer flexible pay plans like contracts and retainers, so you don’t need to pay them a salary like you would with an in-house social media marketer.
- They stay on top of all the latest developments, news and technology in social media, since it’s their job.
- They have experience with similar brands and the reputation to back it up.
- They have access to platforms like HubSpot, Sprout Social and Hootsuite that you won’t have to pay for on your own.
Now that you know why hiring a social media marketing company is necessary, here are some things to look for to determine if you’re hiring the right one for your business.
1. They are good at communication.
A social media marketer’s job is to communicate. Your social media marketing company should be good at communication, meaning they get back to you quickly on phone, email and chat, are polite even in urgent and tense times and they make you feel secure in their work when you talk to them.
The company should also be able to communicate their results clearly and efficiently. If they say they saw a high ROI, can they communicate it with you in a way that you understand? Are they able to provide easy-to-read charts that someone who is not well-versed in social media could figure out? This is especially important if you’re trying to prove that hiring a social media marketing company is a good investment to an executive who may not know all about social media.
2. They have the proof to back up their claims.
Any social media marketing company can say they are great at what they do. But if they don’t have proof, you’ll have to pass. What is proof? It comes in the form of case studies, increased mentions on social media, more website traffic, better leads and otherwise excellent ROI for their current clients. Check the company’s social media pages as well. If the company you’re considering hiring does not do a solid job updating their own pages, how do you think they will manage with yours?
3. They serve other clients in your industry.
You can’t just hire any social media marketing company. One may be used to working with celebrities on Instagram, while another has extensive experience promoting B2B brands on LinkedIn. Look for a company that has worked with other businesses in your field, and can communicate the intricacies of what you do. This is critical, especially if what your company does can be hard to describe to someone outside of your industry.
If you don’t have to teach your social media marketing company the lingo of your business, you’re going to save a lot of time and effort. Another positive of this is that your company may have valuable connections within your industry, like influencers who will be able to boost your content on social media.
4. Their individual team members have experience.
If you want to determine if you’re in good hands with your social media marketing company, look at who is on their team and doing the work for you. Do they outsource tasks to freelancers and have interns and people just starting out in their careers manage your campaigns? Or do their team members have years of experience and expertise in the field? Look at the team members’ LinkedIn profiles for some crucial background information.
5. They have great reviews and a solid reputation.
We live in a time when other customers’ reviews influence our everyday decisions. In fact, 90 percent of consumers will look at online reviews on a business before they even visit it, and 88 percent of consumers trust online reviews just as much as personal recommendations. Just like you’d visit Yelp and Google Reviews to do your due diligence when you’re trying to find a new sushi joint, you’re going to need to do thorough research on the social media marketing company you want to hire.
Start with the company’s website itself. Do they have legitimate reviews from real people at reputable companies? What client logos are on their site? Look on trusted websites like Clutch.co, Agency Spotter and The Manifest to research the top social media marketing companies out there.
You can even check out Glassdoor to see what your company is like behind the scenes. Do they treat their employees well? Do they have top ratings? Does their company culture mesh well with yours? Keep your eye out for red flags – like five-star ratings across the board on unverified websites – because sometimes companies pay for positive reviews.
Getting Started With Your Social Media Marketing Company
You’ve done your research and know what you’re looking for in a social media marketing partner. Now it’s time to go out there and hire a social media marketing company that will understand your needs and deliver the results you deserve.