Whether you plan to use social media for better PR outreach, marketing, or just listening to what customers have to say, the social media tools you use can play an important role in your business. What’s equally important is who uses those tools in your company’s name. Should you handle social media profiles yourself, or should you turn to a professional who can help you develop a solid social media strategy?
There’s no single right or wrong answer here. Sometimes it will make sense to take the DIY approach to social media. Sometimes that isn’t feasible, and it makes more sense to hire help.
When to Handle Your Own Social Media Efforts
If the following apply to you or your business, you might be in a good position to take the DIY approach to social media management.
- You’re experienced using various social media tools, so there won’t be a big learning curve.
- You have a good idea of what you want to get out of your social media use right now. Better yet, you can articulate that by setting measurable goals. Still better, you actually know how you can measure your progress (not always easy).
- Your brand is very closely tied to you as an individual, so customers (or readers or fans or whomever you want to connect with) expect you to be more than just the face behind the social media profiles.
- You have the time. Social media outreach is an investment, not a one-shot deal.
When to Bring in a Professional
On the other hand, here are some signs you might be in a good position to hire social media pros (or pros in the area you’re targeting — like marketing or PR — who just happen to be knowledgeable in social media efforts).
- Your business is made up of several different departments or divisions and you need someone who can coordinate social media activities between them (without any one of them “taking over”).
- Whether you run a large company or work as an independent contractor, you don’t have enough time to effectively manage your social media profiles on your own.
- You’re an awful writer (or public speaker if you plan to use podcasts and videos). If you don’t have specific skills required, hire help. You don’t always need an all-out social media manager. Sometimes a professional blogger, editor, or even an assistant to keep things organized will be enough.
These certainly aren’t the only signs that you should take the DIY path or hire a social media professional of one sort or another. If you’ve faced this decision personally, leave a comment and tell us what drove your choice.