by Calvin Cox on June 1, 2010
You’ve hired your consultant two years ago and most of your marketing budget is still going towards Google Adwords! Your Adwords campaign landing pages are still your homepage! Your inbound marketing strategy includes 75% cold calling! Your company’s blog is still on the wordpress subdomain! Facebook is still only for your friends and family! You’re still confused on what a Twitter hashtag is! Google still has no idea that your website exists! You are still using your blog primarily for company announcements! The Page titles on your website only have your company’s name… on every page! You still don’t know why blogging is important! You can’t figure out why you’re paying your consultant so much money! You’re so confused about social networking that he still handles everything! If this is you, IT MIGHT BE TIME TO FIRE YOUR SEO/SMM CONSULTANT.
Hire a Social Media Consultant that understands that social media marketing campaigns are most effective when implemented by the business owner or someone in the company. I believe that the key ingredient to a successful social media campaign is your involvement in the process. You either do most of the social media outreach yourself, i.e. blogging, tweeting, buzzing or making Facebook friends, or you hire a fulltime employee to do it for you. Seldom can a part-time consultant be effective in building your brand online, especially if he’s managing twelve other brands.
Your consultant should be there to manage or ‘consult’ you on ways to effectively run your campaign. He should develop marketing strategies, and discover communities where your demographics gather, and plan marketing campaigns that will be effective in reaching them. Once the strategy and marketing plan has been developed, he should involve you in the training, planning, and the execution of the plan, allowing you to genuinely engage with your community.
It’s been my experience that even though your consultant amasses 3,000 friends on Facebook and 5,000 followers on Twitter, it still doesn’t add up to a successful social media campaign… unless those people are engaged with your brand.
Engagement builds friendships and business relationships that will lead to new customers, either through direct contact or by your community sharing your content with their friends and colleagues.
I know that you hire experts to do the jobs you can’t do or don’t want to do, but you should know what the expectations of hiring a social media consultant are, what he can and cannot promise or deliver. Knowing the expected ROI will allow you to track the consultant’s progress and allow you to make changes if necessary in order to reach your marketing goals.
To learn more about what makes a great social media marketer or consultant read Tamar Weinberg’s post, What Traits Define a Social Media Marketer?
To learn what to look for in hiring an SEO Consultant read Jordyne Wu’s post on Hubspot titled How to Hire And Manage An SEO Consultant.
What are your expectations of a social media consultant?