Before you consider hiring a social media consultant to help build your author platform, be sure you understand the benefits, risks, and options. Protect yourself and your writer brand with this great list of questions to ask a social networking assistant or social media management company.
Questions You Must Ask Before Hiring A Social Media Consultant Or Assistant
- How successful are your social media outlets? If you want a good example of a strong social media presence, take a look at our website or visit us on Facebook, Twitter, etc.
- Do you intimately understand my potential audience? In a best-case scenario, you’ll hire a social media consultant who specializes in your market. At Writer’s Relief and Web Design Relief, we specialize in many aspects of literature, publishing, and building a brand for writers.
- What exactly am I getting? Be sure you know how many times the company will post per week; if your consultant is coming up with post ideas and publishing them, or if you’ll be creating posts and then sending them for the company to publish; if you’ll have a designated contact person to take your calls, field your questions, and give you advice. It may also help to ask for an agreement in writing.
- How much will I pay? Do you charge me on a recurring basis?
- If I terminate our partnership, will I retain ownership of the social media profiles you set up for me? Beware of social media consultants who will lock you out of your own profile after the agreement is terminated.
- Will I have access to my profiles any time I like? If your social networking team is posting regularly on your behalf, will you be allowed to jump in at any time and post too?
- Will you agree not to post anything on my profile to further your own business interests?
- Will I be able do approve posts before you make them live?
- How will you go about capturing my voice, interests, style, and author brand?
- How many accounts do you manage? Ask the company to show you examples of social media profiles they maintain.
- Will you agree not to publish the terms of our partnership? Some writers don’t want it known that they work with a social media consultant. Others don’t care if the partnership is public, since it is typical for writers, artists, and businesses to hire social media help these days.
- Will you guard my personal contact info?
- Will you manage any online advertisements for me, within my budget and with my approval?
- Are you going to promote my posts to your followers? For various reasons, some companies won’t promote your posts on their social media sites. But every company is different, so it doesn’t hurt to ask for specifics.
- Can you send me a list of any extra or additional charges that might come up?
- Will I retain the copyright to anything you post on my feed?
- Do you offer any analytics? Some companies will offer you statistics about engagement—click rates, interactions, etc.
- How to you handle negative feedback or grumpy followers?
6 Reasons To Be Suspicious When Hiring A Social Networking Assistant
- Any charges supposedly from the social media website itself. Social media sites are free. Companies should charge only for set-up.
- Promises of big sales and big professional successes. Social media can put you in the right place at the right time, but no one can promise definite results.
- Guaranteed friends, followers, and fans. Often these “guaranteed” numbers are made up of people who are uninterested in you or your writing. To literary agents and editors, the quality of your interactions is far more important than the quantity of your followers.
- Claims that you need to be on every social media site. This is especially disconcerting if a company wants to charge you for maintaining each profile!
- Demands that you engage in advertising, press releases, etc. While well-targeted ads and press releases are helpful in certain situations, they shouldn’t be mandatory.
- An unwillingness to listen to your goals and plans. If your social media consultant feels more like a dictator than a partner, find someone who will listen to you and help you develop a strategy to meet your goals.
Our Virtual Assistant Program can take the hassle out of monitoring your social media accounts—our social media experts will maintain and update your Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest accounts for you! Learn more about our Virtual Assistant Program.
Photo by Brett Davies.
QUESTION: Have you ever wished you could get help with your social media networking?