Kristen’s best advice for maximizing success with an outsourced social media team.

When our senior social media manager Kristen Fritz started at Brafton several years back, her job responsibilities frequently involved building client’s social media accounts from scratch. Those days are few and far between as we approach the start of 2015. This year, the portion of B2Cs with existing social media presences climbed to 88 percent, and that number climbs to 92 percent for B2Bs.

However, Kristen is the first to remind you that there’s a big difference between having an account set up and having a social media strategy. Not all businesses are that clear on the distinction, yet.

That’s where Kristen and her team of social strategists come in. Alongside the initial setup and consultancy, our teams dive into our client’s audiences – finding out their preferences, what they respond best to and where they’re most likely going to be spending time online.

Even though social media services are widely used by businesses,  Kristen said it’s natural for clients to feel apprehensive – even fearful – about sharing their social media platforms with an outside team. “Will we lose control?”  “Will our presence be altered?” “Will they understand how we want to be portrayed?” are all questions Kristen regularly fields.

Here’s some of Kristen’s best advice for maximizing success with an outsourced social media team:

Fear: How will you know how we want to be portrayed?

Think voice, think tone

We begin client relationships with a kickoff process that answers any initial questions they have and learn more about what their social media experiences have been thus far.

From there, our strategists get to work on a proposal that’s both a combination of our clients’ goals and wishes and our instincts based on successes we’ve seen.

Kristen said one of most critical topics we cover in our proposal is voice and tone. We always strive to use an appropriate voice and build a presence that we think works best for the brand and industry. Clients can then take this a step further by providing their marketing materials and internal documents, so we can fully understand how they want to be portrayed. 

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Fear: How will you know better than we will? 

Trust our instincts

Kristen said the best relationships happen when she has the support of her client to run the strategy based on her instincts and expertise.

“I’ve developed relationships with my clients over the course of the last few years, so at this point they really trust I’m doing the best things possible for their social media presence,” she said. “I have one client now that includes me in conversations with the PR team and it’s been helpful because I’m aware of any celebrity partnerships they have and media appearances coming up.”

Another concern we hear? Social media requires big money. Here’s our guide to promoting your content on any budget.

Fear: What if we don’t like what you’re doing?

Give us feedback and constructive criticism

Another thing that’s really helpful is receiving regular feedback from our clients. We need to know what they like and don’t like, so we can stay on track. It’s also helpful to have a calendar of events they want us to promote.

Another critical component: We need fresh content to share.

Kristen said it’s one of the most important things for success: “Any brand that wants to have a solid social media strategy needs interesting content on their website to share and keep visitors coming back.”

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Fear: We don’t want to lose all control of our presence.

Include your voice too

If losing control is a client’s main fear in an outsourced strategy – we encourage them to dip their feet in as well. Kristen said right now about half of our clients post alongside what we’re doing. This makes for an even more diverse social experience.

“Posting frequency varies based on client and industry,” Kristen said. “That said, we’d rather put out something worth sharing instead of worry about hitting a daily quota of 12 tweets.”

Read more: 15 Campaigns that prove “boring” industries can have fun on social media

We’re helping clients move out of the adoption phase and into a position where they can drive results. As brands embrace social media as a way to reach their audiences  – and have fun, engaging in one-on-one conversations – they’re giving us more freedom to execute strategies that amplify their marketing strategies even further.

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Want to learn more about the hot social media trends you’ll want to include in your 2015 budget? Kristen will be presenting our upcoming webinar on Dec. 10.

Molly Buccini is Brafton's community manager. She joined the team with a background in digital journalism and social media. She's a theatre nerd, pop culture junkie and lover of summertime.