Social media can be weird when it comes to business promotion and marketing.
You can look around at small businesses in your area and see ones that are succeeding with social media. You follow them on Facebook or Twitter and it seems like they’re always getting engagement (likes, comments, shares, etc.).
Then you look at other small businesses and it seems like they’re struggling. The things they’re sharing maybe aren’t that different from the successful social companies, but they’re not getting the same engagement.
What’s going on?
I think success with social media is about commitment, a little luck and the person in charge of the effort.
The commitment can be a result of the person in charge, but it also needs to be there from the business owner. If the owner isn’t on board with committing to social media for the long-term then it’s going to be a challenge to have success.
If you’re a business owner you first decision is committing to social media. You have to look at all the things you can do to market your business and prioritize those opportunities. If social media is near the top then commit to the strategy.
The second part is finding the right person for the job. If you enjoy using social media yourself and have the time to commit then you might be the right person.
If not, then you’ll have to bring someone on board. They might be someone within the company. They might be someone you have to hire.
Here are some tips for finding the right person for the job. And these can apply to you if you’re the one you think is right for the job.
1. Cultural Fit
This is a big one. Social media is about connecting with people, your target customers. It’s not unlike meeting your customers in person and getting to know them and sharing stories and building a relationship that can lead to trust and business transactions.
A big part of building relationships with people is the person you are and the culture at your company. As a business owner the culture usually starts with you. The things you value, the way you live your life and all those types of things bleed into your business. You probably hire people that you like and that fit with your values.
You want to do the same when hiring someone to do social media. If you hire someone that shares your values then you won’t have to hold their hand as much or put rules in front of them because you’ll be able to trust them.
There still might be occasional slip ups or things like that, but if you hire someone that fits your values usually it’ll work out well.
The person you hire should have a passion for social media. They probably enjoy all aspects of social media even in their free time. They like Snapchatting with friends and family. They like checking Facebook to see what’s going on with the people close to them. They like using Twitter to get their news.
When there’s passion it can take care of the commitment, which is required for success with social media. In the early days of a strategy it can be lonely because there isn’t an audience. That can wear on someone and they’ll need to tap into their passion to push through and see the effort to the point where people are interacting.
The only thing you might have to watch is for burnout. You can maybe encourage the person to unplug sometimes from their technology and social media.
Curiosity is good for many aspects of life. It’s good to have a curiosity because that leads to learning and experimenting. So often in the world we try to make people follow our rules and we kind of beat the curiosity out of them.
Embrace the curiosity of the person you hire for social media. You want them to try new things so they can discover what does and doesn’t work. Let them experiment and figure out what’s best for your business and your audience.
A little competitiveness can go a long way. You want someone that wants social media to succeed for your business. You want them to see that other businesses in your industry or in your area are succeeding with social media and to have the passion to be just as good or even better than they are.
Without a little competitiveness they’ll settle for pretty good, but with it they’ll keep pushing to do just a little more and a little more and that will add up to good things over time.
This is a big one and it can be difficult to find. I almost think that being reliable is better than someone that does amazing work. You see it in places like professional sports. Coaches love a player that maybe isn’t the best at their position, but that is always reliable. They’re always in the right spot. They can be relied on to show up on time and do the job.
When hiring for social media look for signals that the person is reliable. Do they show up on time for calls and meetings. Do they like schedules? Do they have routines?
You also want someone that has a sense of responsibility. They know that the social media effort is about more than just them. They have a responsibility to your company and to all the others in the company. They are in control. They own the social media effort and it’s their job to make it a success within the confines of the culture at the company.
Business can get bogged down and serious sometimes. You want someone that likes to put a friendly twist on life. You want someone that likes to have fun. That is a person that is enjoyable to be around in person and social media is no different than real life. People are attracted to people that are fun to be around so hire someone that you enjoy spending time with in person.
Social media can be frustrating. It’s not an easy thing for everyone and that’s why it’s important for businesses to put the right person in charge of things. Follow the tips above and they should help you find the right person to put in charge. Do that and you’ll be giving yourself a good chance of having success with social media.