5 STEPS TO TAKE WHEN CHOOSING A SOCIAL MEDIA AGENCY IN 2018
November 15, 2017
So you’ve decided to invest in the world of social media marketing but aren’t sure how to choose an agency? Since the average Australian spends almost two hours on social media every day, developing a cracking social media strategy is an extremely cost efficient tool to build trust, engage with and acquire new customers.
With social media ad spend predicted to be 20% higher year on year, how do you spend wisely to ensure your content gets seen, read and heard by your customers across multiple channels (especially when Hubspot tell us that no-one trusts social media ads)?
With a bunch of of social media agencies to choose from and freelance services like Upwork, everyone claims to be an ‘expert’ – how do you find the right fit for your growing business or start up? We get it, it can be tough! Here’s our 5 best tips on finding the right fit.
Choosing the right social channels for your content can be daunting so it’s more important than ever to choose the right agency to recommend a strategy that’s a right fit for your brand.
1: THE OUTPUT IS ONLY EVER GOING TO BE AS GOOD AS THE INPUT!
Before you even start looking at agencies, make sure you’re crystal clear on your business and social media objectives. Know your target market and buyer personas inside out and become an expert on what your competitors are doing in the social space. If you’re clear on what you want and who you’re trying to engage, it almost guarantees that you can communicate to any agency what it is you want them to do. Vague notions of ‘I want to grow my business’, or ‘I want to be on Instagram’ aren’t going to cut it and you’ll find out that you get out what you put in!
2: DO YOUR RESEARCH
Once you’ve got a shortlist of agencies, it’s question time! Start with asking what their brief process is. How in depth is it? What’s their strategy for getting to know your customer, what they like and how they like to get their information? How do they evaluate what channels your customers are most active on? Make sure you check out their social media accounts – if they’re not doing a great job of their own, chances are it’ll be the same for you! Ask to see their case studies and portfolio. Have they had any clients in your industry / niche?
3: MAKE SURE THEIR SPECIALITY MATCHES YOUR OBJECTIVES
When it comes to social, there are so many avenues and channels to choose from so it can be tough to know which agency is best at what! A great agency will take a look at your objectives and be completely transparent about whether they think they’ll be able to achieve what you’re after. They should be able to discuss the pros and cons of each social channel and strategy with you and give you advice about what would work best for your customer. Make sure you’re familiar with current social media trends and terminology (check out the latest reports from Forbes and Entrepreneur). If video is important for engagement, influencer marketing is on the rise as is ephemeral content, are these strategies right for your customer? And if so, which agencies specialise in these?
4: REPORTING AND OPTIMIZATION IS KEY IN ACHIEVING OBJECTIVES
Inbound vs outbound. Written content vs video. Instagram vs Snapchat. Ephemeral vs Influencer. Paid vs content. With almost two thirds of consumers more likely to trust a brand if they interact with consumers in a positive way on social media, knowing what’s working and what’s not has never been more important. They key here is asking agencies how often they report, what key metrics they report on and how they then use this information to optimise your campaigns. It’s all well and good knowing after the fact how a campaign performed but being nimble enough to improve when they’re in market can make a good campaign a great one. Ask to see a sample report!
5: SIZE DOES MATTER
Since a ‘social media agency’ can cover a huge range of expertise and skills, another thing to consider is size. We already know that all agencies have different strengths but another thing to ask your agency is about workload. How many accounts do they have? How many accounts does each Account Manager look after? How much actual time will they spend on your business every week? How important to them is your business? Going with the biggest agency isn’t necessarily always the right decision.