Social media management is largely misunderstood. When people see you online all day, it’s easy for them to think you’re posting selfies or having a long old chat with friends. But this is far from the truth. The reality is, managing one, let alone multiple accounts for clients is tough stuff. And a role that requires plenty of time, knowledge and expertise. So, with this in mind, lets clear up five misconceptions about social media management.
#1 It’s a low-pressured job
When you’re a social media manager, you’re responsible for the online representation of a brand. One wrong move could land you in hot water which is why it’s essential to not only understand the rules and regulations of a particular sector but to fully appreciate the client’s tone of voice. If your online communication is not in-line with brand guidelines you could be risking the reputation of the company you’re working for.
When you’re a social media manager, putting your feet up is simply not an option. Businesses expect to see results and that means you have to put in the work. Every move you make will be carefully monitored to see it will help reach the desired targets and goals.
#2 You can say what you want
Absolutely not! I do a lot of work for the finance sector. And I can’t express clearly enough how important it is to respect relevant governing bodies which in Cyprus includes CySEC. There are many rules regarding promoting financial services including crypto, ICOs and blockchain projects, so going off-piste simply isn’t an option. Brands will trust you to do what’s right and if you don’t there will be high fines and penalties to face.
Below is a small extract from Twitter’s guidelines regarding financial services promotions:
There is a big emphasis on being fair, clear and not misleading to consumers. That’s why regulators such as the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) give very specific guidelines that every single social media manager must be aware of without question. Note how attention must be paid to the wording of post to avoid getting in trouble.
#3 Social media management takes a few hours a week
Wrong! As more and more companies become fully or at least partially digital, online communication is becoming increasingly necessary and important. Businesses are rapidly discovering the need for a dedicated social media expert who can expand outreach, increase brand awareness and implement campaigns that work.
Check out the below advert on a popular job search site for a social media manager in London.
Sounds good right? But it’s not a walk in the park. Here’s the list of responsibilities!
As you can see, reporting, strategising, account monitoring and managing consumer reviews are significant elements of the job along with coming up with a long-term social media implementation plan that’s accessible and approved by management.
This is an exciting opportunity for someone with the right skills. But it’s also a great example of how and why social media management is considered a full-time position.
#4 Anyone can be a social media manager
It’s not that difficult right? Surely it will be easy to find the right candidate? Well, if you read the job description above you’ve now got an idea about the complexity of the role in question. It’s not easy and you will need someone with specific skills.
Someone in the position of social media manager needs to have a firm understanding of each and every platform including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube as well as blogging sites including Telegraph and Medium to name just a few.
They should also have an excellent grasp of social media tools including AgoraPulse which helps to schedule posts across all major platforms. Others on the list may include Hubspot which also provides closed-loop reporting data as well as TweetDeck which allows you to manage multiple accounts at once while following trending topics in an easy way. Then there’s Google Analytics, Buffer, Raven and a host of others that make life so much simpler. Life as a social media manager is rarely a 9-5 either. Expect to have channels on your smartphone that you may need to monitor out of hours.
Check out this super cool infographic for more information. Here’s a snippet:
Therefore, all things considered, its really not a good idea to throw someone new in the deep end. Or to base your marketing plans around the viewpoint that social doesn’t take that long!
#5 Bad comments can be swept under the rug
As seasoned social media managers know, bad comments should not be deleted or simply swept under the rug. Ignoring negative feedback or consumer complaints is not good for business. Instead, they should be addressed according to brand guidelines which will differ from company to company. An emergency bad PR plan should be in place at the start of any professional relationship and it’s wise to gather approved content that you can post to appease followers somewhat while you delve deeper into the issue.
My agency Contentworks is a leading provider of social media management for B2B and B2C brands.
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