Perhaps you've heard the saying, never trust a skinny cook (or in my case a cook with a skinny family). Perhaps you've had the experience at a Chamber of Commerce event when a young man approaches in a cheap ill-fitting suit and introduces himself as a “WEALTH MANAGER!” Sorry, but I'd rather take financial advice from Warren Buffet! So when you find yourself looking to hire someone to help manage your social media activities, you might want to look beyond that teenager down the street who knows how to tag friends in photos on Facebook.
There are so many so-called “Social Media Experts” out there today that it is comical. After all, you just need to have a Facebook profile and Twitter account to call yourself a social media marketing expert! If I were looking to hire someone to help me with marketing, PR or communications today, I would expect to see them blogging and tweeting. If you are wanting to hire someone to help you with social media, well, you should see if they are SOCIAL!
Here are 9 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Social Media “Expert”:
- Are people following them on Twitter? (porn & spammers don't count–they follow my dog too!) Not that big numbers mean someone is brilliant, but if they can't get 100 people to follow their tips, how will they get people to follow you?
- Are they having conversations with people on Twitter? Conversations include other people. They are not just pumping out sales messages to get people to sign up for a webinar or newsletter.
- How many times has the person been LISTED on Twitter and how are others categorizing their “expertise.” It is one thing to say you are an expert at something, but who do OTHERS say you are? Go to their Twitter profile and click on LISTS in the left column and then select MEMBER OF. This shows you how other people have categorized this person or company.
- Do they blog? Again, there are many brilliant people who do not have time to blog, but blogging can show you their writing ability and style.
- Do they maintain their own Facebook Business Page? How are they getting business? Are they showing how they use Facebook apps and tools that they will use to help you engage with a community?
- Are they involved in groups on LinkedIn? Where are they sharing their knowledge and showcasing the skills they are saying they will use on your accounts?
- Do they have a Google+ account set up and running. Since this is a newer platform, they should be out in the front experimenting with new tools to help YOU grow your business.
- Are they on Instagram or Pinterest. If this is where you want them to help you, they should also have a presence there and know how to attract an audience.
- Can you look at some of the accounts they are managing on social platforms? Do you like what you see there?